Discussion in 'Techforge' started by Tuckerfan, Dec 6, 2014.
Awesome, you can actually see the atmosphere on it.
You know . . . that bright heart-shaped feature appears to be overlying the darker "whale" feature. I wonder if it's some kind of cryovulcanism thing going on there? Frozen nitrogen perhaps overlying darker frozen methane or something.
You beat NASA at least:
And speaking of Pluto's features, NASA scientists are now giving unofficial names to some of the things they've spotted -- names they can submit to the International Astronomical Union for official approval. They're sticking with the trend of underworld creatures and gods -- Pluto, after all, was the Roman god of the underworld -- and have tentatively named a previously observed dark, whale-shaped splotch (just to the left of the broken heart) after "Cthulhu," the dark deity invented by author H.P. Lovecraft. Described as part man, part dragon, and part octopus, Cthulhu has gained something of a cult following in the Internet age.
Off to bed now, but fingers crossed!
Hope it went well New horizons
New Horizons has phoned home to say its okay. Data dump to begin later.
You'll never unsee it. And how did Disney know?
I saw this....
Called it, post 44!
(I think -- post numbers don't show on the mobile version and fuck crapatalk)
And the first pics are in! Pluto has an 11K foot high ice mountain, Hydra looks like the invaders from the Space Invaders game and Charon looks like our moon. http://www.smithsonianmag.com/scien...seup-pictures-pluto-flyby-are-here-180955934/
As I knew I would be, I am simply awestruck. We've a whole new set of worlds to explore!
I can now check that item off of my list. I finally got to see Pluto, really see it. It's just as awesome as I had hoped. Onward! Let's push the boundaries of our knowledge!
It'll be a year before all the data gets back here, so there's still plenty to look forward to from this flyby.
I mentioned this over at TrekBBS, but it happened this afternoon:
My mom called me into the living room, where she was working on her laptop. She showed me that picture and said "Wow, look at this! I think this is Pluto, or its moon." I replied, "that's not Pluto, or one of its moons, mom." She answered, "Yeah, it is. I remember that they took some pictures of Pluto, and its moon." I waited a beat, and then said, "That's no moon, it's a space station."
True story. I waited my whole life for that moment, and it finally happened.
Where'd you get that from?
New Horizons cost less than what Minnesota's new football stadium did.
Lest you think there's no public money involved in building a football stadium for an NFL team, allow me to submit this.
Just look to the Braves for more evidence. Turner Field (formerly the Olympic Stadium) is being vacated. The Sun Trust Braves Stadium in Cobb County is being funded 50% by county issued bonds which will be paid back by taxpayers. The county says taxes won't be increased, just diverted from other projects that would have been for the public good. The taxpayers are pissed. This is the brainchild of one person; no referendum was held just 5 part time county commissioners voted. Only two weeks was allowed for public feedback.
After the new stadium was announced, citizens organized campaigns both supporting and opposing the plan, which was made public only two weeks before the Cobb County Commission voted. More than 80 percent of county residents supported delaying the vote, Cobb Chairman Tim Lee and Commissioner Helen Goreham insisted that vote could not be delayed because it would threaten the stadium's timeline. An InsiderAdvantage/FOX 5 poll released on November 25, 2013, showed that 59 percent of registered voters in Cobb County favored building a new stadium for the Braves. However, support fell to 30 percent of Cobb County voters when they were asked if they'd support funding the stadium with Cobb County tax dollars, with 56 percent opposed and 14 percent undecided. On September 8, 2014, the University of Florida's Department of Tourism, Recreation and Sports Management released the first independent scientific poll on Cobb residents' attitude toward the public investment in the stadium. The survey found that 55 percent of the survey respondents would have supported the stadium in a referendum.
Two weeks after the Atlanta Braves announced the new stadium project, the Cobb County Commission held a public hearing to vote on whether to approve the plan. Citizens who both supported and opposed the plan began crowding into the meeting hall hours before the 7 p.m. hearing was to begin, many sporting "Cobb: Home of the Braves" T-shirts. After a one hour public comment on the new stadium project the Cobb County Commission voted 4–1 to approve a memorandum of understanding with the Atlanta Braves. On May 27, 2014, the Cobb County Commissioners voted unanimously, 5–0, on the operating agreement that bound the county to borrow up to $397 million to build the new stadium.
Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority plans to issue up to $397 million in bonds for the project. Retired businessman Larry Savage, attorney Tucker Hobgood, and Austell resident Rich Pellegrino have filed notices of appeal with the Georgia Supreme Court, to argue against issuance of the bonds. Attorneys Lesly Gaynor Murray and Blake Sharpton of law firm Butler Snow, the county’s bond counsel, represented Cobb in the Supreme Court. The appeal was heard by the Georgia Supreme Court in February, 2015. On June 29, 2015, the Georgia Supreme Court unanimously upheld the bond authorization. The failed appeal represented the last legal challenge to the SunTrust Park project.
I find the whole idea of publically subsidized venues for private athletic competitions quite odd. There are cities that lack a single example of such venues, having built them entirely with private money. Then there are these corporate welfare cities that use tax money. Why can't Atlanta succeed in private enterprise when Boston manages to avoid these subsidies all together?
Anyway, this is getting pretty far off topic, and Techforge is not meant for threads shifting with the winds. Yes, it is awesome that NASA was so efficient with this mission. Aside from that, the question of public finances is a distraction.
IIRC it was after the loss of the Mars Observer that NASA decided they wanted to shift to the "faster, cheaper, better" concept in unmanned probes as they called it.
Mars Observer was considered one of the multi billion dollar "flagship missions" even though it had a largely "cobbled together" nature. New Horizons which grew out of earlier Pluto exploration concepts was part of this emphasis.
Though to be honest, the original Pluto Express plans were to send TWO unmanned spacecraft to flyby Pluto instead of only one.
ArsTechnica article saying that some of Pluto's features will be hard to explain.
Well, going to speculate here. Everybody's up in arms because Pluto's surface looks so young and fresh. No craters.
We know Pluto has seasons. It goes around the sun in about 248 years on a highly eccentric, very elliptic course. And I mean very elliptic - it's out between 30 and 50 AU. Until now we thought the temperature never rises about something like -230 degrees there. But why's that an absolute? Sure it doesn't get much energy from the sun but OTOH it doesn't seem to reflect much either. What if it goes up to something like -180 degrees? What if all the Methane and stuff actually (half-)melted there during summer because the surface is darker than we thought?
Now that'd explain the spit and polish, wouldn't it. Wham, bam, thank you asteroid-ma'am, but your crater will be gone next summer! Also, unique world with ever changing surface.
/cue geologists screaming in terror
So is this probe heading to Eris next? I'm actually more curious about that one, since it's about the same size as Pluto and we know nothing about it.
No, Eris is unreachable. And given that an Eris year has about 550.000 or so Earth years it won't move into a good position soon.
They are still deciding between two or three Kuiper Belt objects.
This Minnesotan was not given a vote.
Let's hope that the funding isn't cut or anything and that it can continue exploring the Kuiper belt. It's not as if chances like that come around very often.
Also, in terms of probes, what's next? We've visited all of the major spots in the solar system to some extent by now. I hear that there's a mission planned for a sample return from an asteroid. Maybe the moons of Neptune or Uranus could do with a closer look, or we could send something to land on the Jupiter/Saturn moons?
We're done doing deep space missions for the foreseeable future because we have almost no plutonium-238 left. We're down to 36 pounds, and the Curiosity rover alone took 10 pounds.
nope, we're good for the foreseeable future.
With 35 kilograms of plutonium dioxide on the shelf, NASA might seem in a good position to fuel many future nuclear-powered spacecraft. But the stockpile has aged, and less than half of it now meets NASA specifications in terms of how much heat it produces. Given the long lead time in planning planetary missions, and the challenges in maintaining the plutonium supply for missions not yet even dreamed of, the agency is less well-off than it might appear.
NASA will use about 5 kilograms as a generator on the next Mars rover, set to launch in 2020. And future missions to the outer Solar System could require multiple generators.
The new contract with the DOE will for the first time provide NASA with a steady supply of the isotope. The goal is for the DOE to produce 1.5 kilograms of plutonium dioxide a year by 2021, which translates to about 1.1 kilograms a year of 238Pu. With that small influx, NASA should have enough to fuel about two missions a decade, says David Schurr, deputy director of NASA’s planetary-sciences division in Washington DC. “We’re probably good for the next 20 years for foreseeable missions,” he says.
Besides Iran will be exporting atomic fuel in 10 years.
Facebook, I think. I don't know what its original source is.
Pics of Nix and Hydra are in.
If there was any doubt that Pluto was a cold bitch, her heart shaped region is carbon monoxide ice.
Pluto to scale, when compared with a familiar feature on the Earth.
Separate names with a comma.