Published on Feb 21, 2015
” NASA astronauts Butch Wilmore and Terry Virts completed the first of three spacewalks to run cable outside the International Space Station on Saturday. Carly Marsh reports.
Wall Street Journal
Here is the time-lapse video comprised of one still shot of the sun taken every eight hours from June of 2010 until February 2015 as recorded by the Solar Dynamics Observatory …
Published on Feb 11, 2015
” The Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) celebrates its 5th anniversary since it launched on February 11, 2010. This time-lapse video captures one frame every 8 hours starting when data became available in June 2010 and finishing February 8, 2015. The different colors represent the various wavelengths (sometimes blended, sometimes alone) in which SDO observes the sun.
For more about SDO, please visit http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/ “
While this video pays tribute to the fifth anniversary of the SDO and provides some spectacular film closeups of the sun , solar flares , corona dances and more … simply awe-inspiring …
Published on Feb 11, 2015
” February 11, 2015 marks five years in space for NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, which provides incredibly detailed images of the whole sun 24 hours a day. Capturing an image more than once per second, SDO has provided an unprecedentedly clear picture of how massive explosions on the sun grow and erupt ever since its launch on Feb. 11, 2010. The imagery is also captivating, allowing one to watch the constant ballet of solar material through the sun’s atmosphere, the corona.
In honor of SDO’s fifth anniversary, NASA has released a video showcasing highlights from the last five years of sun watching. Watch the movie to see giant clouds of solar material hurled out into space, the dance of giant loops hovering in the corona, and huge sunspots growing and shrinking on the sun’s surface.
The imagery is an example of the kind of data that SDO provides to scientists. By watching the sun in different wavelengths – and therefore different temperatures – scientists can watch how material courses through the corona, which holds clues to what causes eruptions on the sun, what heats the sun’s atmosphere up to 1,000 times hotter than its surface, and why the sun’s magnetic fields are constantly on the move.
Five years into its mission, SDO continues to send back tantalizing imagery to incite scientists’ curiosity. For example, in late 2014, SDO captured imagery of the largest sun spots seen since 1995 as well as a torrent of intense solar flares. Solar flares are bursts of light, energy and X-rays. They can occur by themselves or can be accompanied by what’s called a coronal mass ejection, or CME, in which a giant cloud of solar material erupts off the sun, achieves escape velocity and heads off into space. In this case, the sun produced only flares and no CMEs, which, while not unheard of, is somewhat unusual for flares of that size. Scientists are looking at that data now to see if they can determine what circumstances might have led to flares eruptions alone.
Goddard built, operates and manages the SDO spacecraft for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington, D.C. SDO is the first mission of NASA’s Living with a Star Program. The program’s goal is to develop the scientific understanding necessary to address those aspects of the sun-Earth system that directly affect our lives and society.
This video is public domain and can be downloaded at: http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/goto?11742 “
” So the results are in. The main US global-temperature scorekeepers – NASA and the NOAA – say that last year was definitely the hottest year on record. But they’ve been contradicted by a highly authoritative scientific team, one actually set up to try an establish objective facts in this area.
On the face of it, there’s no dispute. The NASA and NOAA (National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration) statement says:
The year 2014 ranks as Earth’s warmest since 1880, according to two separate analyses by NASA and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) scientists.
Open and shut, right?
But in fact, detecting a global average temperature rise – of less than a degree since the 1880s, as all sides agree – among thousands upon thousands of thermometer readings from all over the world and spanning more than a century is no simple matter. The temperature at any given location is surging up and down by many degrees each day and even more wildly across a year. It can be done, across a timescale of decades, but trying to say that one year is hotter or colder than the next is to push the limits of statistics and the available data. This sort of thing is why the battle over global temperatures tends to be so hotly debated.
A few years ago, a new dataset was established called the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project. It was intended to address various issues raised by climate skeptics: but in fact it has plumped down firmly on the warmist side of the debate, saying that in fact there are no undue biases in the temperature records, changes in the Sun do not have any major climate effects, and so on.
Now, however, the BEST boffins have broken ranks with the NASA/NOAA/UK Met Office climate establishment and bluntly contradicted the idea that one can simply say “2014 was the hottest year on record”. According to BEST’s analysis (pdf):
Our best estimate for the global temperature of 2014 puts it slightly above (by 0.01 C) that of the next warmest year (2010) but by much less than the margin of uncertainty (0.05 C). Therefore it is impossible to conclude from our analysis which of 2014, 2010, or 2005 was actually the warmest year.
That may seem like not such a big deal, but it is really. At the moment the big debate in this area is about the “hiatus” – has global warming been stalled for the last fifteen-years-plus, or not? “
” NASA’s Opportunity rover celebrated 11 years on Mars Saturday (Jan. 24), and the robot’s handlers are marking the occasion with a gorgeous panoramic photo that Opportunity took of its Red Planet home.
Opportunity landed on Mars on the night of Jan. 24, 2004, a few weeks after its twin, Spirit, made its Red Planet debut. The rovers were tasked with three-month missions to search for signs of past water activity on the Red Planet. Both Spirit and Opportunity found plenty of such evidence, and then kept rolling long after their warranties expired.”
” Spirit stopped communicating with Earth in 2010 and was declared dead a year later, but Opportunity is still going strong. The robot has been exploring the rim of the 14-mile-wide (22 kilometers) Endeavour Crater since August 2011, and it crested a rise on the rim known as Cape Tribulation earlier this month. [Latest Mars Rover Photos from Opportunity & Spirit] “
” A mountain-size asteroid will zoom past Earth Monday (Jan. 26), marking the closest pass by such a large space rock until 2027.
Asteroid 2004 BL86, which is about 1,800 feet (550 meters) wide, will come within 745,000 miles (1.2 million kilometers) of our planet Monday — about three times the distance between Earth and the moon. While this flyby poses no threat to Earth, it does present a rare opportunity to get a good look at a near-Earth asteroid, NASA officials say.
Scientists are eager to study 2004 BL86 to pinpoint its orbit, observe its surface and even look for moons. The plan is to track the fast-moving asteroid using the 230-foot (70 m) dish-shaped Goldstone antenna at NASA’s Deep Space Network in California, as well as the 1,000-foot (305 m) Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. These radio dishes will beam microwave signals at the asteroid, which will then bounce off the target and return to Earth. [Photos: Potentially Dangerous Asteroids]
” For objects that get this close, that are this large, the radar observations are really analogous to a spacecraft flyby in terms of the caliber of the data that we can get,” said Lance Benner of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, who is the principal investigator for the Goldstone observations of the asteroid.”
” Using images from the Hubble Space Telescope, a bird’s-eye panoramic view of part of the Andromeda galaxy is the clearest, largest picture ever assembled by NASA of the galaxy next door.
The Andromeda galaxy is located more than 2 million light-years away from Earth but the Hubble Space Telescope was powerful enough to capture part of it, bringing together 1.5 billion pixels representing a stretch of galaxy with a length of 61,000 light-years. Over 100 million stars were immortalized in the image as well, some of them seen in clusters of thousands.”
” The impressive photograph raises the bar for precision studies involving spiral galaxies dominating the universe as they number more than 100 billion. Astronomers have never been able to view stars so clearly yet so widespread in external spiral galaxies. “
” An unmanned cargo rocket bound for the International Space Station exploded Tuesday over a launchpad in Virginia.
No injuries were reported following the first catastrophic launch in NASA’s commercial spaceflight effort.
The accident at Orbital Sciences Corp.’s launch complex at Wallops Island was sure to draw criticism over the space agency’s growing reliance on private U.S. companies in this post-shuttle effort.
NASA is paying billions of dollars to Orbital Sciences and the SpaceX company to make station deliveries, and it’s counting on SpaceX and Boeing to start flying U.S. astronauts to the orbiting lab as early as 2017. NASA spokesman Rob Navias said there was nothing on the lost flight that was urgently needed by the six people living on the space station.
Orbital Sciences’ Antares rocket blew up over the launch complex, just six seconds after the liftoff. The company said everyone at the site had been accounted for, and the damage appeared to be limited to the facilities.”
” A small asteroid, designated 2014 RC, will safely pass very close to Earth on Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014. At the time of closest approach, based on current calculations to be about 2:18 p.m. EDT (11:18 a.m. PDT / 18:18 UTC), the asteroid will be roughly over New Zealand. From its reflected brightness, astronomers estimate that the asteroid is about 60 feet (20 meters) in size.”
” At an evening event in the SpaceX Headquarters on Thursday night, CEO and founder Elon Musk revealed the Dragon V2 space capsule, a next-generation version of SpaceX’s current Dragon capsule that will be able to ferry up to seven crew members and cargo to the International Space Station (ISS) and eventually to other destinations. The capsule is reusable, and will be able to make a controlled landing “with the precision of a helicopter” upon re-entry.
The capsule, which has been in development for several years with help from NASA, will be a part of a new generation of commercial space vehicles since the US shuttered its own shuttle program in 2011. Currently, NASA pays Russia around $71 million a head to taxi astronauts to and from the ISS on Soyuz vehicles.
Tonight, Musk told the press that his company foresees being able to send astronauts to the ISS and back for around $20 million per seat.
Musk added that depending on how many flights SpaceX is able to launch, that cost-per-head number could come down significantly to where it could “potentially get into the single-digit-million figure.”
NASA has publicly stated that it wants a commercial space vehicle to be ready for prime time by 2017; Musk told Ars tonight that NASA is being characteristically cautious: “from a SpaceX standpoint we expect to be ready to transport crew by 2016,” he said. “We feel fairly confident that we’ll be ready in two years.” When the Dragon V2 does launch, it’ll launch from the historic pad 39A at the Kennedy Space Center, which SpaceX recently signed a 20-year lease for.”
Ars Technica has much more
” One of the latest missions from the ISS is kind of amazing. The High Definition Earth Viewing (HDEV) experiment consists of four cameras that have been attached outside of the ISS. Though temperature is controlled, the cameras are exposed to the radiation from the sun, which will allow astronauts to understand how radiation affects the instruments.
The experiment is being run in conjunction with High Schools United with NASA to Create Hardware (HUNCH) program that serves as outreach for students 9-12. Students participating in this program also helped design some aspects of the camera.
The cameras point down at Earth at all times, which makes for some breathtaking images. The feed will sometimes go down as the signal switches between the cameras, and it is hard to see when the ISS is on the dark side of the planet. If the cameras are down, the screen will be grey.”
” ***QUICK NOTES ABOUT HDEV VIDEO***
” Black Image = International Space Station (ISS) is on the night side of the Earth.
Gray Image = Switching between cameras, or communications with the ISS is not available.
No Audio = Normal. There is no audio on purpose. Add your own soundtrack.
For a display of the real time ISS location plus the HDEV imagery, visit here: http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/HDEV/
The High Definition Earth Viewing (HDEV) experiment aboard the ISS was activated April 30, 2014. It is mounted on the External Payload Facility of the European Space Agency’s Columbus module. This experiment includes several commercial HD video cameras aimed at the earth which are enclosed in a pressurized and temperature controlled housing. Video from these cameras is transmitted back to earth and also streamed live on this channel. While the experiment is operational, views will typically sequence though the different cameras. Between camera switches, a gray and then black color slate will briefly appear. Since the ISS is in darkness during part of each orbit, the images will be dark at those times. During periods of loss of signal with the ground or when HDEV is not operating, a gray color slate or previously recorded video may be seen.
Analysis of this experiment will be conducted to assess the effects of the space environment on the equipment and video quality which may help decisions about cameras for future missions. High school students helped with the design of some of the HDEV components through the High Schools United with NASA to Create Hardware (HUNCH) program. Student teams will also help operate the experiment. To learn more about the HDEV experiment, visit here: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/917.html “
” A potential game changer in the hunt for life outside our neighborhood has just been discovered about 493 light years away. Using NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope, astronomers have found a rocky planet that is similar in size to Earth and is within the “habitable zone” of the star it orbits.
The discovery of this planet, called Kepler-186f, is confirmation that exoplanets the size of Earth do exist in the habitable zone of stars other than our sun. The habitable zone – often referred to as the Goldilocks Zone – is the range of distance from a star where liquid water can pool on the surface of an orbiting planet.
This is not the first planet that has been discovered within the habitable zone, but it is the first of near equal size to Earth. Other larger planets that have been found have been at least 40 percent larger than Earth and have been difficult for researchers to determine their exact composition.”
Red Orbit has the story
” An encryption flaw called the Heartbleed bug that has exposed a collection of popular websites — from Airbnb and Yahoo to NASA and OKCupid — could be one of the biggest security threats the Internet has ever seen. If you have logged into any of the affected sites over the past two years, your account information could be compromised, allowing cybercriminals to snap up your credit card information or steal your passwords.
You’re likely either affected directly or indirectly by the bug, which was found by a member of Google‘s security team and a software firm named Codenomicon. The bad news: There’s not a lot you can do about it now. It’s the responsibility of Internet companies to update their servers to deal with Heartbleed, and once they do, you can take action (see below).
The issue involves network software called OpenSSL, which is an open-source set of libraries for encrypting online services. Secure websites — with “https” in the URL (“s” stands for secure) — make up 56% of websites, and nearly half of those sites were vulnerable to the bug. In theory, a cybercriminal could have exploited Heartbleed by making network requests that could piece together your sensitive data. The good news: There isn’t any indication that a hacker caught wind of this; it seems the researchers were the first to locate the problem.”
Read more at Mashable and learn how to save your data
” Sydney – NASA’s new study says the crunch time for civilization could be very near. Usually, when civilizations fall, it’s a big deal. Whether or not anybody will even notice the fall of this particular civilization is highly debatable.
A new study sponsored by Nasa’s Goddard Space Flight Center has highlighted the prospect that global industrial civilization could collapse in coming decades due to unsustainable resource exploitation and increasingly unequal wealth distribution.
Noting that warnings of ‘collapse’ are often seen to be fringe or controversial, the study attempts to make sense of compelling historical data showing that “the process of rise-and-collapse is actually a recurrent cycle found throughout history.” Cases of severe civilisational disruption due to “precipitous collapse – often lasting centuries – have been quite common.”
NASA is sounding like an adjunct to the extremists of the Democratic party . While the drumbeat of income inequality is sure to grow louder and louder as the 2014 election nears we wouldn’t expect such a blatant show of partisanship from an allegedly apolitical scientific organization such as NASA , but such is life in Obama’s Amerika .
” You can see where this is going. Distribution of wealth, social inequalities, etc. One word would do- “Mismanagement”. The historical societies didn’t just collapse. They fell to pieces over time. At any point, they could have revived, but they didn’t.
Old economics are still very much part of this perspective. The economic hierarchy is given as the primary symptom of the decline of civilization. Resource depletion is cited as the primary issue for economic management. “
The fact is that we are not in disagreement with the concept of the “s**t hitting the fan” , on the contrary , we see no other possible result under our present leadership of ignorance , foolishness and corruption . No , where we take issue with the NASA prediction is in the root causes … NASA’s main focus deems “income inequality” and “unsustainable resource exploitation” as the culprit in civilization’s impending death , which is just another way of demanding MORE GOVERNMENT INTERVENTION .
” As a matter of fact, inequalities have existed since the caves. There are no recorded instances of any society of economically equal people, either, in those 5000 years. Quite the opposite, the “1%” of the historical past records the elites, not the mass of the society. “
We here at YouViewed on the other hand feel that the demise of our way of life , should it come to be and things are not looking good , will be a direct result of an overabundance of State action rather than a need for more . Trying to shift the blame to two of the Left’s favorite stalking horses all but guarantees our imminent collapse by throwing more gasoline on the already raging pyre . The solution to our ills lies at the very fingertips of our innovative citizenry if only those fingertips weren’t being crushed under the boot heel of the Leviathan State .
” History is made by individuals and groups, not by the whole society.”
Read the rest
” NASA scientists announced Wednesday the discovery of 715 new planets around distant stars, including four alien worlds roughly the size of Earth that might be the proper temperature for liquid water to form and, therefore, potentially suitable for life.
The discovery, based on two years of data collection on 150,000 or so stars by the agency’s orbiting Kepler space telescope, brings the confirmed count of planets outside our solar system to nearly 1,700.
” We have almost doubled the number of planets known to humanity,” said planetary scientist Jack Lissauer at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif., who is a science co-investigator on the $600 million Kepler space telescope mission.”
Discover more at WSJ
” Looking for a truly out-of-this-world camera? Then an upcoming auction in Austria might have something to interest you — at a price.Vienna’s Westlicht gallery, the world’s largest auction house for cameras, will auction in March a camera returned to Earth, having been used on the moon, during NASA’s Apollo 15 mission.
Compared to present-day cameras, the Swedish-made Hasselblad, used for landscape photography on the lunar surface, is something of a dinosaur. Inconvenient for selfies, it could never be slipped inside a pocket, weighing in at several kilograms.
Its lack of electronic wizardry means no geotagging, hence no metadata. But if anyone was concerned about the NSA getting wind of what it was up to, it’d be hard pushed to film anything surreptitiously. The Hasselblad, a boxy brontosaurus of a camera that Apollo 15’s Lunar Module Pilot Jim Irwin used to take nearly 300 pics while on the lunar surface, couldn’t be said to have a stealth mode.”
” Thanks to the nearly 3,000 satellites monitoring Earth, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration is able to capture some of the most breathtaking images of our planet from outer space. NASA recently released the best photos that these satellites have taken from space this year. “
” Clouds hovering off the coast of California “
” The unmanned X-37B spacecraft — flying a mission known as Orbital Test Vehicle 3 (OTV-3) — launched into space atop an Atlas 5 rocket from Florida’s Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Dec. 11, 2012. What payloads the space plane is toting and the overall mission goals on its confidential cruise are classified.
But it is known that the OTV-3 mission signals a milestone for the X-37B program. “
Published on Nov 29, 2013
” A pristine comet called ISON, which left its home at least a million years ago, will be making its closest approach to the sun on Thanksgiving day. Gautam Naik reports.”
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” South Korea has unveiled designs for its planned Moon lander, a key part of President Park Geun-hye’s pledge to revitalize the country’s aerospace industry and space programme.
The uncrewed module — of which a scaled-down mock-up was unveiled to the press on 22 October — will travel on board a Korea Space Launch Vehicle-2 rocket and is designed to carry a lunar rover weighing 10–20 kilograms, which will look for signs of rare minerals on the Moon’s surface. A robotic orbiter will also circle above the lunar landscape for more than a year at an altitude of about 100 km.”
Bring it on … the more the merrier .
” Scientists say that solar activity is stranger than in a century or more, with the sun producing barely half the number of sunspots as expected and its magnetic poles oddly out of sync.
The sun generates immense magnetic fields as it spins. Sunspots—often broader in diameter than Earth—mark areas of intense magnetic force that brew disruptive solar storms. These storms may abruptly lash their charged particles across millions of miles of space toward Earth, where they can short-circuit satellites, smother cellular signals or damage electrical systems.
Based on historical records, astronomers say the sun this fall ought to be nearing the explosive climax of its approximate 11-year cycle of activity—the so-called solar maximum. But this peak is “a total punk,” said Jonathan Cirtain, who works at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration as project scientist for the Japanese satellite Hinode, which maps solar magnetic fields.”
Are the lights about to go out ? End times anyone ?
” The countdown has commenced and the excitement is building for India’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) – which will conduct a detailed study of the Martian atmosphere and is the nation’s first ever mission to the Red Planet.”
” The 56 hour 30 min countdown started at 6:06 a.m. IST today (Nov. 3), according to an official statement from the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) leading to liftoff on Tuesday, Nov 5, from a seaside launch pad in Srihanikota, India.”
” MOM is the first of two new Mars orbiter science probes from Earth set to blast off for the Red Planet this November. Half a globe away, NASA’s MAVEN orbiter remains on target to launch barely two weeks after MOM on Nov. 18 – from the Florida Space Coast.”