Space & Science megathread

Alpha Fail

Jack Burkitt
A good day to kick this off. At lunchtime I watched the NASA simulator's realtime 3D model of New Horizons passing close to Pluto. At first, you could sweep the camera around the ship, the solar system was behind it, Pluto in front, with its moons. I went to make a cup of tea. Coming back, we were five minutes from closest point. Within ten minutes, you could angle the camera so that the spacecraft, Pluto and the entire of the rest of the solar system was on-screen at once. 30,000mph relativistic speed - the fastest spacecraft and therefore fastest anything ever made by mankind. Powered by, of all things, plutonium. Just now, at 2:10am we received the first telemetry back, that's how long it takes. Now follows 15 months of data, all systems nominal. A perfect mission. 3.3 billion miles. That's further into touch than Danny Fox can kick a cross to a striker.

Since the shuttle grounded and the commercial rockets began losing their shit a few miles up, it's felt a bit flat, space-wise, but we've had so many triumphs recently - the mars rover providing me with desktop wallpapers, Voyager finally leaving the solar system - mankind reaching out into interstellar space for the first time, Philae landing on the comet and waking up months later, and now this.

It's humbling and I love it. Puts our mediocre sports club's issues into perspective for one thing. Let's have this thread for all such scientific awesomeness.

Here's another one for you. Theoretical physics predicted pentaquarks in the 60s. Today we found them, thanks to the Large Hadron Collider. Considering we are stuck here and started off knowing nothing, we're doing alright.
 
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Dr Sheldon Cooper

Geoff Thomas
The initial pictures of Pluto are rather concerning:

View attachment 9654

I was half expecting this

2865.gif


Back on topic, I'm always amazed by the accuracy of the trajectory these deep space probes take, considering that for almost all the journey they are unpowered and driven by gravity. I read a book about the voyager missions - an amazing achievement considering it was back in the day of slide rules.
 

virgo

Geoff Thomas
Being as Scientists are oft complaining that they are seen as aloof and self-centred and generally "Sheldon" like, I think they missed a trick when they named the dwarf planets associated with Pluto. Instead of naming them after people or Gods from Greek Mythology, why not just name them Bashful, Sleepy, Dopey, etc. I bet they could even get Disney to sponsor them.


(If I was clever enough I would put a tongue-in-cheek type thingy here).
 

Dr Sheldon Cooper

Geoff Thomas
Being as Scientists are oft complaining that they are seen as aloof and self-centred and generally "Sheldon" like, I think they missed a trick when they named the dwarf planets associated with Pluto. Instead of naming them after people or Gods from Greek Mythology, why not just name them Bashful, Sleepy, Dopey, etc. I bet they could even get Disney to sponsor them.


(If I was clever enough I would put a tongue-in-cheek type thingy here).

who you calling Sheldon like?
 

Strummer

Orel Mangala Fan Club
Space & Science megathread

"Look at those cave-men go...
It's the bestselling show...
Is there life on Maaaarrs?"

Is about the best I can find, from a quick listen of Ziggy Stardust
 
Whereas Debbie Harry went to the trouble of rhyming "Mars" with "cars", "bars" and "guitars". Bowie really needs to push himself a little more if he wants to make it n in the pop world...
 

Strummer

Orel Mangala Fan Club
Whereas Debbie Harry went to the trouble of rhyming "Mars" with "cars", "bars" and "guitars". Bowie really needs to push himself a little more if he wants to make it n in the pop world...

I think you might be on to something here.

Mr. Bowie, take note!
 

Dr Sheldon Cooper

Geoff Thomas
Whereas Debbie Harry went to the trouble of rhyming "Mars" with "cars", "bars" and "guitars". Bowie really needs to push himself a little more if he wants to make it n in the pop world...

Much as I loved Debbie Harry when I was an adolescent that song was pure shit.
 

I'm Red Till Dead

John Robertson
I found a few interesting bits on the New Horizons mission and Pluto that I thought some might find interesting

Here's the New Horizons Twitter feed

https://twitter.com/NASANewHorizons

Here's a CNN story with some photos going back to the start of the mission.

http://edition.cnn.com/2015/07/15/us/nasa-new-horizons-pluto-flyby/

And my favourite. Anyone remember when they sent the probe to Jupiter and they played the sound that it emitted? Well someone as uploaded the sound of Pluto to Youtube -

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FYTL8ydERw
 
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