Check out this slow motion video taken from the launch of Apollo 11 of the Saturn V booster. The narration by Mark Gray really helps to illustrate the sheer power of this rocket [1 Million Pounds of Thrust!]. This thing weighed 6.7 million pounds. Now try strapping one of those to the roof of your El Camino. I'm thinking we should have a Rocketdyne week...this is the second bad ass motor reference to them in a week. When was the last time you gave a second thought to Pratt and Whitney [makers of Rocketdyne].
28 April 2010
23 April 2010
Watch this video of the churning of our most near and dear thermonuclear fusion reactor called the Sun and tell me you don't feel insignificant. This was just released from Nasa's Solar Dynamics Observatory [SDO] launched in February. If you're feeling really ambitious watch SDO's video on "helioseismology." Compared to the Sun's influence on Earth versus all of human existence, to think our impact on the planet is remotely significant is hugely arrogant. Humanity is just a hiatus between catastrophes. Nature will take us out when she darn well pleases, and Congress and Protests won't have any influence on her decision.
Wired magazine reported, today, that the US Air Force launched their secret X-37B (aka OTV-1) orbital test vehicle today on the head of an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral. It is supposedly unmanned and it's mission is completely unknown, even when they plan to de-orbit and land the thing. It's a about one fourth the size of the space shuttle. So here is my question to the audience:
What military applications can you come up with? Avoid the obvious like "launching micro satellites." Let's see the creativity. If those satellites can hijack a Russian spy satellite, now we're talking. How about a new spin on HALO (high altitude low opening) military insertions. Does it make sense to drop a Navy Seal team from orbit? Will they have to change their name from "Seal" to "Orbital Drop Shock Trooper", pun intended? Have the DoD and Microsoft teamed up to make the Master Chief a reality?