12 Jun

A look at the future of NASA & humans in space

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“‘Assuming the ISS [International Space Station] is extended to 2028 and the HSF [human spaceflight] budget is increased up to 5 percent per year (two times the rate of inflation), the earliest a crewed surface mission to Mars is likely to occur will be approximately 2040 to 2050.”

(Via Ariel Waldman » The future of humans in space.)

This, along with many other interesting highlights about the recent and thorough look at the future of NASA manned spaceflight by one of the report’s authors are all at the link above.

Meaty reading, I only had a chance to skim.

27 Jan

Yutu rover down for the count



“As sunset approached, something seems to have gone wrong with the Yutu rover. In order to survive the lunar night, Yutu positions itself with one solar panel angled toward the direction of the rising sun. Then it folds down the mast that carries its color camera and its high-gain antenna into its body. Then the other solar panel is folded over the deck like a lid, insulating the interior and the mast, which are kept warm with a radioisotope heating unit. According to various reports online, it sounds like something in this sequence did not execute properly, although the reports are unspecific so I’m not sure yet what happened.”

(Via Bad news for Yutu rover | The Planetary Society.)

04 Jun

Neil Armstrong’s Ohio accent confuses historical quote

Well, there you go:

“The controversy surrounding why Neil Armstrong’s famous moon quote was misheard by millions of people worldwide may have been less to do with dodgy recording equipment and more to do with his unique Ohio accent.

When Armstrong walked on the moon the astronaut claimed to have said: ‘That’s one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind’, but most listeners claim they can’t hear the first ‘a’ and the statement has become best known without it.

Poor recording equipment was previously blamed for the mishearing, yet linguistic experts now claim a unique feature of Armstrong’s Ohio accent could be to blame. “

(Via Neil Armstrong’s accent – rather than dodgy recording equipment – may be to blame for millions of people mishearing the astronaut’s famous moon quote | Mail Online.)

04 Jan

A cogent point about Moonshot returns

From Jonny Nexus Online, a brief blog post that makes a very good point:

…But when a US Navy party led by Admiral George J. Dufek had landed at the Pole in a C-47 Skytrain aircraft on 31st October 1956, they were first people to stand at the Pole since Scott’s party, in 1912, forty-four years previously

He makes the point that the 37+ year hiatus we’ve had since returning to the moon is fairly comparable to the polar hiatus.

I think he makes a good point.