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#5421
Jessica

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SpaceX Starship Will Be Modified for Human Landings on the Moon
Brian Wang | May 3, 2020
moonstarship-730x430.jpeg

The SpaceX human lander design is a single-stage solution with Starship, their fully reusable launch and landing system designed for travel to the Moon, Mars and beyond. The proposal included an in-space propellent transfer demonstration and uncrewed test landing.

The Starship will have an elevator pulley system to take the astronaut to the surface.

The SN4 Starship prototype should fly in May to 150 meters.

The SN5 Starship prototype should fly late in May or in June to 12-mile-high (20 kilometers)

 

https://www.nextbigf...n-the-moon.html



#5422
Jessica

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NASA's Perseverance rover spacecraft put in launch configuration

by Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Engineers working on NASA's Perseverance rover mission at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida have begun the process of placing the Mars-bound rover and other spacecraft components into the configuration they'll be in as they ride on top of the United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. The launch period for the mission opens on July 17—just 70 days from now.

 

Called "vehicle stacking," the process began on April 23 with the integration of the rover and its rocket-powered descent stage. One of the first steps in the daylong operation was to lift the descent stage onto Perseverance so that engineers could connect the two with flight-separation bolts.

 

https://phys.org/new...figuration.html



#5423
caltrek

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Milky Way Magnetar Makes Fast Radio Burst

 

https://skyandtelesc...st-radio-burst/

 

Introduction:

(Sky & Telescope) Two observatories have independently detected a burst of radio waves coming from a magnetar within the Milky Way.

 

The flash of radio waves looks just like the fast radio bursts (FRBs) discovered in increasing numbers over the past few years — but always in other galaxies. These flashes unleash a vast amount of power in the blink of an eye, producing as much energy in milliseconds as the Sun produces in a day. But what causes them remains unknown. The new detection, not yet published but posted on The Astronomer's Telegram, promises to shed light on a powerful mechanism.

 

A MILKY WAY MAGNETAR

 

Magnetars are the dead cores of stars that collapsed when the star itself went supernova. In this sense, they form the same way neutron stars do. But in magnetars, the core retains a powerful magnetic field, typically with a strength of a thousand trillion Gauss. (For comparison, Earth’s magnetic field is less than a Gauss on our planet’s surface.)  These exotic objects successfully explain weird phenomena, such as sources that flash and sputter gamma rays and X-rays.

 

…A magnetar in our own galaxy, known as SGR 1935+2154, was already in fine form, dishing out multiple X-ray flashes as seen with the NICER instrument aboard the International Space Station, the Neil Gehrels Swift Observatory, and others. The magnetar had been discovered in 2014 and monitored since then.

 

But on April 28th, something happened, and the magnetar emitted a powerful radio burst. The Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment (CHIME) and the STARE2 radio array both observed the distinctive flash of radio waves. Nearly simultaneously, the magnetar burped out a short X-ray flash spotted with the Chinese Insight X-ray telescope.


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#5424
Jessica

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Laser-powered rover is designed to explore the Moon's eternal darkness

May 14, 2020
 

Solar power is not just a great energy source on Earth, it can work on the Moon and Mars too. But there are some places that a solar-powered rover just can’t reach, like the Moon’s polar regions that are permanently in shadow. Now, ESA has outlined a new system where a lander shines a laser at a rover to keep it powered from miles away.

Flyovers by several orbiters have revealed that the Moon’s polar regions are home to high amounts of hydrogen, which suggests the presence of water ice. And that’s not entirely surprising – the bottoms of some of these craters never see any direct sunlight, and may not have for billions of years.

That makes these regions an enticing exploration opportunity. But the problem, of course, is that it’s a bit chilly for human astronauts, and even robots might have a hard time, particularly if they’re solar powered. But in a new study, an ESA team has proposed a system to power just such a rover.

 



#5425
Raklian

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Astronauts enter a routine quarantine for historic SpaceX Crew Dragon launch

 

M4ba4WxKUr3Lew6VqvhVqf-320-80.jpg

 

 

 


 

Two NASA astronauts entered quarantine today (May 13) to prepare for a historic launch to space on a SpaceX spacecraft.

 

Astronauts Robert "Bob" Behnken and Douglas "Doug" Hurley entered a pre-flight quarantine today as they get ready to launch to the International Space Station aboard SpaceX's Crew Dragon vehicle as part of SpaceX's Demo-2 mission. This mission, scheduled to launch later this month on May 27 from NASA's Kennedy Space Center (KSC) in Florida, will be the first crewed mission for the vehicle and will be the first crewed mission to orbit since NASA's Space Shuttle program ended in 2011. 

 

 

https://www.space.co...quarantine.html


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#5426
caltrek

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Living on The Space Station Leaves a Microbial 'Fingerprint' on Astronauts

 

https://www.sciencea...t-on-astronauts

 

Introduction:

(Science Alert) If we're going to make it out further into the Universe, we need to know more about the long-term effects of living in space. Two studies have now revealed how the International Space Station (ISS) leaves a microbial 'fingerprint' on astronauts, and vice versa.

 

These studies are part of ongoing projects looking at how space travel affects the human microbiome – all the microorganisms that live on and inside the human body, ranging from our gut bacteria to microorganisms on our skin – and how that microbiome in turn affects the spacecraft around astronauts.

 

The results make for an interesting read. First, an analysis of nine astronauts, published in Scientific Reports in 2019.

 

This study looked at crew members who stayed on the ISS between six and 12 months, and found that, surprisingly, their gut microbiomes actually grew more diverse in the relatively sterile and bacteria-free environment of space.

 

"Since the station is a very clean environment, we were expecting reduced gut diversity in space compared to preflight or postflight because the astronauts are less exposed to environmental bacteria," says microbiologist Hernan Lorenzi, from the J. Craig Venter Institute.

 

The Science Alert article also makes reference to a second study.  A link to that second study is provided below, and an abstract of that study is provided in the quote box below:

 

https://journals.plo...al.pone.0231838

 

Abstract:

(Plos One) The International Space Station (ISS) is a complex built environment physically isolated from Earth. Assessing the interplay between the microbial community of the ISS and its crew is important for preventing biomedical and structural complications for long term human spaceflight missions. In this study, we describe one crewmember’s microbial profile from body swabs of mouth, nose, ear, skin and saliva that were collected at eight different time points pre-, during and post-flight. Additionally, environmental surface samples from eight different habitable locations in the ISS were collected from two flights. Environmental samples from one flight were collected by the crewmember and samples from the next flight were collected after the crewmember departed. The microbial composition in both environment and crewmember samples was measured using shotgun metagenomic sequencing and processed using the Livermore Metagenomics Analysis Toolkit. Ordination of sample to sample distances showed that of the eight crew body sites analyzed, skin, nostril, and ear samples are more similar in microbial composition to the ISS surfaces than mouth and saliva samples; and that the microbial composition of the crewmember’s skin samples are more closely related to the ISS surface samples collected by the crewmember on the same flight than ISS surface samples collected by other crewmembers on different flights. In these collections, species alpha diversity in saliva samples appears to decrease during flight and rebound after returning to Earth. This is the first study to compare the ISS microbiome to a crewmember’s microbiome via shotgun metagenomic sequencing. We observed that the microbiome of the surfaces inside the ISS resemble those of the crew’s skin. These data support future crew and ISS microbial surveillance efforts and the design of preventive measures to maintain crew habitat onboard spacecraft destined for long term space travel.

 

iss-micro-2.jpg

A microbiome swab kit on the ISS.

(NASA)


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#5427
caltrek

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Astronomers Find a Record-Breaking Star That's Nearly as Old as The Universe

 

https://www.sciencea...as-the-universe

 

Introduction:

(Science Alert) Another ancient star has been found lurking in the Milky Way. Around 35,000 light-years away, a red giant star named SMSS J160540.18–144323.1 was found to have the lowest iron levels of any star yet analysed in the galaxy.

 

This means that it's one of the oldest stars in the Universe, probably belonging to the second generation of stars after the Universe burst into existence 13.8 billion years ago.

 

"This incredibly anaemic star, which likely formed just a few hundred million years after the Big Bang, has iron levels 1.5 million times lower than that of the Sun," explained

astronomer Thomas Nordlander of the ARC Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions and the Australian National University.

 

"That's like one drop of water in an Olympic swimming pool."

 

And that's how we can tell how old the star is, because the very early Universe had no metals at all. The first stars were made up primarily of hydrogen and helium, and were thought to be very massive, very hot, and very short-lived.

 


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#5428
Jessica

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US military's mystery space plane rockets back into orbit

Source: AP

By MARCIA DUNN



CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The U.S. military’s mystery space plane rocketed into orbit again Sunday, this time with an extra load of science experiments.

It’s the sixth flight of an X-37B, a solar-powered plane that’s flown by remote control without a crew.

Officials aren’t saying how long the spacecraft will remain in orbit this time or the purpose of the mission. But a senior vice president for X-37B developer Boeing, Jim Chilton, noted each mission has been progressively longer.

The previous mission lasted a record two years, with a touchdown shrouded in darkness at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center last year.

 


800.jpeg

A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket lifts off from Launch Complex 41 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Sunday, May 17, 2020, in Cape Canaveral, Fla. The mission's primary payload is the X-37B spaceplane. (AP Photo/John Raoux)


Read more: https://apnews.com/a...f181493c8fe555a



#5429
Jessica

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Images reveal the first glimpse of a baby planet being born
6 hours ago
 

Planets form from a disk of gas and dust that encircle a young star — the dusk particles only 1/50th the diameter of a single human hair. Gravitational forces pull the gas and dust together and, sometime between 1 to 10 million years later, all of that collision results in a planetary body.

This process is known by scientists. What scientists haven't known is what the birth of a planet actually looks like.

 

https://www.inverse....formation-study



#5430
caltrek

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Massive Rotating Disk in Early Universe Flips Galaxy-Formation Theories

 

https://www.courthou...ation-theories/

 

Introduction:

(Courthouse News) — Star-gazing instruments in the Chilean desert have observed a massive rotating-disk galaxy formed more than 12 billion years ago when the universe was young — a discovery that challenges models for gradual galaxy formation. 

 

Most galaxies in our 13.8 billion-year-old universe — including our Milky Way — developed their large mass slowly and over billions of years, according to traditional formation models.

 

Galaxy development simulations predict that massive galaxies form by merging with or absorbing smaller galaxies and hot clumps of gas, according to the study titled “A Cold, Massive, Rotating Disk 1.5 Billion Years after the Big Bang.”

 

But the new evidence collected by the Atacama Large Millimeter/Submillimeter Array (ALMA) project in Chile shows at least one galaxy reached its large mass at an earlier point in the evolution of the cosmos.

 

The galaxy observed by ALMA — categorized as Galaxy DLA0817g — is the most distant rotating-disk galaxy ever observed, according to the study published Wednesday in the journal Nature.

GalaxyDLA0817g.jpg?resize=1024%2C1024

ALMA radio image of the Wolfe Disk, seen when the universe was only 10% of its current age.

(ALMA (ESO / NAOJ / NRAO), M. Neeleman; NRAO /AUI /NSF, S. Dagnello)


The principles of justice define an appropriate path between dogmatism and intolerance on the one side, and a reductionism which regards religion and morality as mere preferences on the other.   - John Rawls


#5431
Jessica

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Six Days Until Scheduled Manned SpaceX Crew Dragon Flight
Brian Wang | May 21, 2020
demo2capsule-730x430.jpg

 

SpaceX and NASA are targeting May 27 for Falcon 9’s launch of Crew Dragon’s second demonstration mission (Demo-2) from historic Launch Complex 39A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida as part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program. NASA astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley will be the first two NASA astronauts to fly onboard the Dragon spacecraft as part of the Demo-2 mission to and from the International Space Station.

https://www.nextbigf...gon-flight.html



#5432
Jessica

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Trump to attend SpaceX launch in Florida

Source: The Hill


President Trump will attend a major SpaceX launch at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida next Wednesday, according to a White House official.

NASA astronauts are scheduled to fly on SpaceX’s Crew Dragon spacecraft on May 27, lifting off from the Kennedy Space Center complex at Cape Canaveral. It will be the first time that NASA has launched astronauts from the United States to the International Space Station since 2011.

The flight will mark the last flight test for the Crew Dragon spacecraft before it enters regular service. The capsule will blast off with a Falcon 9 rocket.

Trump acknowledged Thursday that he was considering attending the launch in Florida. The trip will be Trump’s fourth to a battleground state in the same number of weeks and will mark his first trip not related to the federal response to the novel coronavirus.

 


Read more: https://thehill.com/...unch-in-florida



#5433
eacao

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And a bromance blossoms

If you're going through hell, keep going. - Winston Churchill

You don't decide your future. You decide your habits, and your habits decide your future.
Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. - Abraham Lincoln.


#5434
Jessica

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China set to launch Mars probe and rover mission in July
 

China’s space program will launch a Mars mission in July, according to its current plans. This will include deploying an orbital probe to study the red planet, and a robotic, remotely-controlled rover for surface exploration. The U.S. has also been planning another robotic rover mission for Mars, and it’s set to take off this summer, too – peak time for an optimal transit from Earth to Mars thanks to their relative orbits around the Sun.

This will be the first rover mission to Mars for China’s space program, and is one of the many ways that it’s aiming to better compete with NASA’s space exploration efforts. NASA has flown four previous Mars rover missions, and its fifth, with an updated rover called ‘Perseverance,’ is set to take place this years with a goal of making a rendezvous with Mars sometime in February 2021.

 

https://techcrunch.c...ission-in-july/



#5435
Jessica

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SpaceX Plans for Mobile Service Tower and 70 Launches Per Year
Brian Wang | May 27, 2020
Screen-Shot-2020-05-27-at-10.12.47-PM-73

SpaceX has an environmental application to the FAA. It shows plans for a Mobile Service Tower and increasing launches to 70 per year. SpaceX will need to amend these plans when the Super Heavy Starship is working. The plans do not include Super Heavy Starship launches.

SpaceX plans to develop vertical integration capabilities at LC-39A to support commercial launches, NASA launches, and USAF’s National Security Space Launch program. An Mobile Service Tower (MST) would be constructed on the existing LC-39A pad to support this capability. The MST would consist of a steel trussed tower, a base, and a rail bridge. Four transport wheel assemblies located at the corners of the tower
Environmental Assessment for SpaceX Falcon Launch Vehicle at KSC and CCAFS would be constructed and used to move the tower 130 feet from an integration to a launch position. The tower would have 11 floors and would be approximately 284 feet tall.

 

https://www.nextbigf...s-per-year.html



#5436
Jessica

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SpaceX At Two Starship Per Month Construction Rate
Brian Wang | May 27, 2020
SN7start-730x430.jpg

SpaceX has started building its seventh Starship prototype. This is the second Starship construction start in May. They now have four Starship prototypes under active testing or construction. SN4 is being prepared for a test flight. SN4 has passed tank pressurization tests that show it could withstand the pressures needed to fly to orbit.

SpaceX is started two Starship prototype construction in May, 2020. SN6 and SN7 had construction starts in May. SN5 was started in April.

Elon Musk indicated that SpaceX would build two Starships every week in 2021.

 

https://www.nextbigf...nstruction.html



#5437
eacao

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And the Lord sayeth, “If thou maketh no stuff, therein the World is no stuff”

And His disciples say onto thee, “O, God and archangel Gabriel, we toil and we sow but verily Satan does cast down a plague on thee. Three months of suffering has he placed upon Your people”.

And the Lord our God replied, “Do not weep for Satan and his plague of three months. If it should wreak misery on your people for four months then keep faith and maketh thou stuff, and your crop shall be rewarded two-fold. If it should wreak misery for five months then thou shalt also keep faith and maketh thy stuff for your toils will be rewarded three-fold. And if it should wreak misery for seven months then maketh thou goods and I shall reward thee with a house by mine on the Kingdom of Mars and I will build seventy-times-ten ferries each year to carry you there. This is my command”.

If you're going through hell, keep going. - Winston Churchill

You don't decide your future. You decide your habits, and your habits decide your future.
Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. - Abraham Lincoln.


#5438
Jessica

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wddycxduvl151.jpg?width=640&height=426&c


#5439
wjfox

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#5440
Jessica

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Sadly, I don't think the starship is going to do as well as the falcon. :(







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: space exploration, aerospace engineering, astronomy, NASA, SpaceX, interstellar, telescopes, satellites, Mars, space

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