posted on Jan, 5 2011 @ 08:47 AM
Precise Mars landing
New heat shields for spacecraft
The next Mars rover, called Curiosity, is set to launch next November. It’s ten times more advanced than the rovers currently on Mars. It has
ten times the number of experiments it can conduct and weighs five times as much. One of the most interesting upgrades: a spacecraft will deliver the
rover to a precise location within a 12-mile radius, use reverse thrusters to gently lower the delivery vessel. The rover will also start preparing
itself for operation during descent and start moving immediately after landing.
NASA’s powerful rock-zapping laser
The shield, which is made from "phenolic impregnated carbon ablator," keeps the capsule at room temperature even though the outside temp is
somewhere around 4,000 degrees. The shield can be re-used for each mission and is even capable of withstanding the harsher re-entry conditions of
Mars. It's similar to the carbon brake pads used on an F1.
Skin-tight spacesuit reduces bone loss
NASA recently developed a rock-zapping laser that will be used on the Mars Science Laboratory, the new rover that will launch next November. With
a blast that’s good for up to 22 feet (NASA officially reported a 32-foot distance, but has corrected that fact for FoxNews.com), the laser explodes
pinhead-sized rocks into fragments that can then be studied for their chemical compounds. When the rocks are blasted, they produce a flash of light
that can also be studied for its chemical make-up.
One of the issues facing astronauts who spend too much time in space -- apart from missing family and aging at a slightly different rate from the
rest of us -- is that they suffer bone loss. MIT has invented a new spacesuit, called the Gravity Loading Countermeasure Skinsuit (GLCS), that
simulates the effects of gravity on the body and helps reduce bone loss.
Man. I would love to be the one running that laser... I would feel like Star Wars....
With all of these suits and tech advancements one can't help but thing that Star Trek and/or Star Wars (I am sure much more boring since we are the
only ones in the universe but..) will be a reality someday.
My biggest problem is when I do get a chance to escape for a little ATS time etc. I start feeling warm and fuzzy about a topic and sure enough...
just as in this case. I get an email that totally disrupts my train of thought.
So, Im sitting here getting all warm and fuzzy about the future of Space Exploration etc and I get this email that is a thread lead to a story about
how a man was dragged from his car while awaiting a green light-two black males approach the car, pull him out. They beat and robbed him. Right on a
It just makes me think that we should be the rest of the universe (if in fact there are other beings out there) that maybe we should just stay here on
earth and eat ourselves up and not spread it to the rest of them.
(mental note: update pistol/carry permit ASAP)