Long live and prosper or May the Force be with you?
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Saturday, September 29, 2007
In preparation for the targeted Oct. 23 launch, Discovery is set to roll from the Vehicle Assembly Building out to the Launch Pad 39A aboard the crawler transporter this weekend. Earlier in the week, the orbiter was attached to the external fuel tank and twin solid rocket boosters atop the mobile launch platform.
In the predawn hours Thursday, the payload canister for mission STS-120 arrived at Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center. The Italian-built U.S. Harmony module destined for the International Space Center will be transferred to Discovery's payload bay once the space shuttle reaches the pad.
More about the Harmony module and STS 120 here.
The pressurized component was named "Harmony" by U.S. students in a nationwide contest. "This module will allow all international partner pieces of the station to connect together, so it's really wonderful that kids recognize that harmony is necessary for space cooperation," said Bill Gerstenmaier, NASA's associate administrator for space operations, when the six winning schools who submitted the name were announced.
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. - A ground-based missile successfully intercepted a target missile Friday in a test of the nation's defense system, the Missile Defense Agency said.
An intercontinental ballistic missile interceptor blasted out of an underground silo at Vandenberg Air Force Base shortly after 1:15 p.m., and tracked a target missile that had lifted off from the Kodiak Launch Complex in Alaska, the Boeing Co. said in a statement.
The Missile Defense Agency said initial results show the interceptor's rocket motor system and kill vehicle performed as planned. Boeing said the warhead was tracked, intercepted and destroyed.
Boeing is the prime contractor for what is formally known as the Ground-Based Midcourse Defense system.
The MDA expects to invest $49 billion in ballistic missile defense development and fielding over the next five years.
Two operational interceptor missiles are currently based at Vandenberg and there are 11 deployed at Fort Greely, Alaska.
View the video of the intercepted missile here.
Thursday, September 27, 2007
Crews plan weekend search near Death Valley
By Brendan Riley
7:35 p.m. September 25, 2007
CARSON CITY, Nev. – Relying on new leads from Air Force experts, crews looking for famed aviator Steve Fossett plan to comb a rugged area near Death Valley by air and foot, authorities said Tuesday.
Gary Derks, the state Department of Public Safety official in charge of the search, said the Air Force analyzed images picked up by radar and satellite and “picked up what could be Mr. Fossett, his track.”
“It gives us an idea, if it's him, what direction he was going,” Derks said of the wealthy adventurer, missing for more than three weeks.
Derks said the area stretches about 100 miles to the southeast from where Fossett took off Sept. 3, an airstrip on a million-acre ranch owned by hotel mogul Barron Hilton. Maps show the area would include Nevada's remote Silver Peak Range, close to Death Valley National Park in California.
“There's nothing definite, nothing concrete,” Derks said. “These are just some hits that we want to track.”
Search planes will fly over the area Saturday and Sunday, Derks said.
The area is “very rough terrain,” Derks said. “If he's there, he's going to be hard to see. That's why we're sending in the ground search-and-rescue crews, too.”
A private search effort by Fossett's family and friends continued Tuesday when a plane with sophisticated camera gear took off from the ranch.
Fossett, 63, has not been seen since he left on what was supposed to be a short ride in a lightweight acrobatic plane to scout locations to break the land speed record.
The adventurer, who made millions as a commodities broker in Chicago, is the first person to circle the globe solo in a balloon. He has also swum the English Channel, completed the Iditarod sled dog race and scaled some of the world's best-known peaks.
James Hansen received $720,000 from OSI, Open Society Institute a Geroge Sorros group and to fund his media campaign. Then he received $250,000 from the Heinz group (Mrs. John Kerry) and supported John Kerry in 2004.
Then the hockey puck theory was kicked out from him here:
After the the GISS data error was revealed, Hansen finally agreed to make public the method he uses to generate "official" temperature records from the actual readings. That process has been revealed to be thousands of lines of source code, containing hundreds of arbitrary "bias" adjustments to individual sites, tossing out many readings entirely, and raising (or lowering) the actual values for others, sometimes by several degrees. Many areas with weak or no rising temperature trends are therefore given, after adjustment, a much sharper trend. A full audit of the Hansen code is currently underway, but it seems clear that Hansen has more explaining to do.
Sunday, September 16, 2007
A movie you must go see, "In the Shadow of the Moon." Here's some facts I did not know about Apollo 11:
The film also devotes time to a disaster that never happened - Armstrong and Aldrin being stranded on the moon. There's astonishing footage of President Richard Nixon delivering a eulogy to the astronauts, which, of course, never aired. Obviously, the fact that the speech was written and recorded says a lot about NASA's lack of confidence about the success of the mission - and the effect that failure would have had on the American public. The film continually makes the point - as do some of the astronauts - that the Apollo program represented what was good about the United States not only to Americans but also to the rest of the world.
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
Sunday, September 02, 2007
HT From Hotair here:
“The only moon landing in history is NASA’s Apollo expedition in 1968.”
Well lets see, did we or did we not have 6 Moon landings from 1969 to 1972? Is there something wrong with this story here.
MOSCOW (AFP) - Russia plans to send a manned mission to the Moon by 2025 and wants to build a permanent base there shortly after, the head of Russian space agency Roskosmos said Friday.I guess the AFP in Moscow doesn't fact check at all!
"According to our estimates we will be ready for a manned flight to the Moon in 2025," Anatoly Perminov told reporters. An "inhabited station" could be built there between 2027 and 2032, he said.