Airline food is not much to write home about, so think about what astronauts have to endure. Well the HI-SEAS program is tackling that challenge. Its mission is
"to boldly study food preparation strategies for long-term space exploration.
Below the jump, see some of the dishes—and their recipes—selected
as the tastiest by the HI-SEAS crew, which intrepid Mars colonizers
might be munching on one day.
Each of these meals was submitted by outside contributors. The dishes
were made of stabilized, non-perishable ingredients during the HI-SEAS
mission by the crew, who then voted on their favorites. The following
three are just a sampling, though. For more, go to the recipe contest page, which also lists runners-up."
Charles F. Bolden Jr., the current NASA
administrator, said, “As long as there are history books, Neil
Armstrong will be included in them, remembered for taking humankind’s
first small step on a world beyond our own.”
Mr. Bolden also noted that in the years after the moonwalk, Mr.
Armstrong “carried himself with a grace and humility that was an example
to us all.” The historian Douglas Brinkley, who interviewed Mr.
Armstrong for a NASA oral history, described him as “our nation’s most
bashful Galahad.” His family called him “a reluctant hero who always
believed he was just doing his job.”
UrtheCast’s (pronounced Earthcast) 4.5-foot-long camera, designed to handle the radiation and
extreme temperatures of orbit, will record 90-second videos 150 times a
day as the spacecraft circles the planet, Larson says. A second camera
will continuously snap still photos. Together, the stills will cover a
47.3-kilometer-wide swath of the planet and generate 2.5 terabytes of
data a day, the equivalent of about 270 full-length movies. UrtheCast’s
engineers will condense and post the visuals to the company’s website an
hour or two later. “With our images, you can see things moving and
changing,” Larson says.
Powered by the space station, UrtheCast will be able to shoot images at
night, something existing providers’ solar-powered satellites don’t do,
Larson says. “That’s something unique. There’s a great application
potential,” says Timothy Puckorius, chief executive officer of Earth
Observation Technologies, which plans to act as UrtheCast’s account
manager for some government clients.
One of the most vexing problems in space research is that so little
has changed in 50 years about the way we get to space. Consequently,
space access remains both expensive and rare. It has still not reached
the stage where scientists can themselves routinely travel there to
conduct research, unlike oceanographers, who routinely reach the deep
ocean, or geophysicists, who venture to the poles.
All this is poised to change. The advent of for-profit commercial
spaceflight—most recently highlighted by the successful launches of the
Dragon space cargo capsule, built and operated by SpaceX, to the
International Space Station (ISS)—will likely transform space research.
Scientists will enjoy lower launch costs, far more frequent access to
space and the opportunity to personally run their experiments in orbit.
These advances will not only help the big space research enterprises at
NASA and the Japanese and the European space agencies, they will also
probably make space access affordable to a broad, global base of
nations, academic institutions and corporations.
While the call for a married couple to sign up for the 2018 Inspiration Mars fly-by has received the most attention, New Scientist (sub required) identifies 4 major challenges that need to be met before the mission can be attempted (the next launch window with ideal Earth-Mars alignment will not happen till 2031)
The record preserved in the Landsat archive is the record of loss—of
forests, glaciers, and pristine, natural spaces—as humans occupy ever
more area on Earth and affect its climate. “We are an impressive
species,” says Hansen. “We are everywhere doing stuff. And very few
forests are left alone. From Scandinavia to Australia to Chile, Brazil,
and back up to Canada—the forests are just used all the time.”
There’s an up side to the story, though, and Landsat is also
essential to it. Impressive for their reach and appetites, humans are
equally impressive for analyzing and understanding change. Landsat
images have been used around the world by resource managers who have put
in place practices to mitigate human impact as well as cope with the
effects of natural forces like floods and wildfires.
An even sunnier side of the story: Since 2008, Landsat archived
imagery has been free and accessible without restriction to anyone in
the world. As of August 2012, nine million images have been downloaded.
With renewed interest in space travel and satellite launches ..
"Despite the crude and primitive image of the country presented to the
world in “Borat,” Kazakhstan has long had an honored place in the space
community as home of the Baikonur spaceport from which Sputnik, the
first manmade satellite, was launched in 1957, igniting the space race."
"Today it remains the launch site for manned travel to the International
Space Station, including the travel of private citizens who can afford
the modest fee of fifty million dollars for a space adventure."
"Half of all light in the universe is in millimeter-wavelength light
between the far infrared and radio waves. ALMA can detect this light,
which is emitted by cool objects and distant objects. It's possible
thanks to the telescope's location at 16,400 feet in the driest desert
on Earth, and because of the incredible precision of its 66 antennas.
All telescopes are limited in their angular resolution by the ratio
of their aperture to the wavelength they observe, explained Michael
Thornburn, head of the ALMA department of engineering. ALMA is an
aperture synthesis telescope.
"We cannot make a single aperture 15 kilometers across, so we do it
in pieces," he said. "The signals from individual dishes are combined to
build up the image from a single large aperture."
Radio signals from distant cosmic sources arrive at each dish at
ever-so-slightly different times, and these are combined with the
signals from every other antenna. This technique, interferometry, allows
ALMA to operate like a single huge dish with an adaptable radius.
In a carefully choreographed ballet, each dish moves in unison with
the others to change the telescope's observing area. Along with moving
in place, giant transporter trucks, specially designed for the dishes,
can pick them up and cart them across the Chajnantor Plateau to one of
192 concrete pads. At their greatest distance apart--16
kilometers--ALMA's angular resolution will be equivalent to the Hubble
Space Telescope, Peck said."
Courtesy of Oliver Marks I saw this spectacular compilation of images from the International Space Station. While the whole video is awesome, the Milky Way at 2.36 and the auroras at 4.51 are particularly impressive.
New information provided by a worldwide network of sensors has allowed scientists to refine their estimates for the size of the object that entered that atmosphere and disintegrated in the skies over Chelyabinsk, Russia, at 7:20:26 p.m. PST, or 10:20:26 p.m. EST on Feb. 14 (3:20:26 UTC on Feb. 15).
The estimated size of the object, prior to entering Earth's atmosphere, has been revised upward from 49 feet (15 meters) to 55 feet (17 meters), and its estimated mass has increased from 7,000 to 10,000 tons. Also, the estimate for energy released during the event has increased by 30 kilotons to nearly 500 kilotons of energy released. These new estimates were generated using new data that had been collected by five additional infrasound stations located around the world – the first recording of the event being in Alaska, over 6,500 kilometers away from Chelyabinsk. The infrasound data indicates that the event, from atmospheric entry to the meteor's airborne disintegration took 32.5 seconds. The calculations using the infrasound data were performed by Peter Brown at the University of Western Ontario, Canada.
The trajectory of the Russia meteor was significantly different than the trajectory of the asteroid 2012 DA14, which hours later made its flyby of Earth, making it a completely unrelated object. The Russia meteor is the largest reported since 1908, when a meteor hit Tunguska, Siberia.