OK: Found an XML parser.
OK: Support for GZIP encoding.
OK: Support for character munging.

Example Output

Channel: Space – Movs.World

RSS URL:

Parsed Results (var_dump'ed)

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      ["title"]=>
      string(93) "SpaceX launches “Starlink” satellites again – they could be prominently seen in the sky"
      ["link"]=>
      string(109) "https://movs.world/space/spacex-launches-starlink-satellites-again-they-could-be-prominently-seen-in-the-sky/"
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        ["creator"]=>
        string(11) "Susan Hally"
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      string(31) "Sat, 21 May 2022 22:35:59 +0000"
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      string(51) "SpacelaunchesprominentlysatellitesskySpacexStarlink"
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      string(803) "Home page knowledge Created: 05/19/2022, 2:57 p.m Von: Tanja Banner Split Like a “string of lights” or “string of pearls”: “Starlink” satellites from SpaceX move across the night sky. (Archive image) © Belga/Imago Images SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space company, keeps launching “Starlink” satellites into space. If you look carefully at the sky, you can see ... Read more"
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  1. Home page
  2. knowledge

Created:

Von: Tanja Banner

Split

Like a “string of lights” or “string of pearls”: “Starlink” satellites from SpaceX move across the night sky. (Archive image) © Belga/Imago Images

SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space company, keeps launching “Starlink” satellites into space. If you look carefully at the sky, you can see the “string of pearls”.

  • SpaceX, billionaire Elon Musk’s private space company, operates the largest fleet of satellites in Earth orbit.
  • The “Starlink” satellites should enable fast internet in all corners of the earth, but researchers and the US space agency Nasa are concerned.
  • The “Starlinks” are often visible as “strings of pearls” or “strings of lights” in the sky at dusk and dawn.

Update from Wednesday, May 18, 2022: SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites could be clearly visible in the sky again in the near future. In April and May, Elon Musk’s private space company launched six rockets, each carrying 53 Internet satellites, and there are currently 2,405 SpaceX satellites in orbit, of which 2,374 are operational, according to astronomer Jonathan McDowell on his private website.

In May alone, SpaceX sent four rockets, each with 53 satellites, into space – the “Starlink” satellites in particular, which have not been in earth orbit for long, could be seen in the sky. The last rocket launches took place on May 18, 14 and 13, 2022. Experts criticize the numerous rocket launches and fear that the rocket exhaust gases could have an impact on the climate and the earth’s atmosphere.

Important to know

If you spot an inexplicable “string of lights” or “strings of pearls” streaking across the dark sky, there’s a very good chance they’re SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites. Shortly after launch, the satellites are still very close together, so the appearance in the sky can take on other forms.

Strange “light chain” observed in the sky? “Starlink” satellites could be behind it

Update from Thursday, March 03, 2022: “Starlink”, the satellite megaconstellation from SpaceX, which is intended to make fast Internet available worldwide from space, is currently on everyone’s lips: SpaceX boss Elon Musk recently activated the “Starlink” Internet in Ukraine and shortly afterwards corresponding ones Hardware brought to the war-torn country. Today, Thursday (03/03/2022) at 3:35 p.m., a “Falcon 9” rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida transported the next 47 “Starlink” satellites into space.

SpaceX has been considered the largest satellite operator for some time. Before launch on March 3, SpaceX had 1,970 active “Starlink” satellites in Earth orbit, according to observer Jonathan McDowell – after launch, SpaceX will surpass 2,000 active satellites.

Newsletter on astronomy and space travel

What is happening in the sky above our heads? Which topics are researched in astronomy and what drives the space industry? Subscribe to the free FR newsletter and stay up to date!

Elon Musk’s “Starlink” satellite constellation is constantly expanding

First report from Friday, February 25, 2022: Frankfurt – If you look at the starry sky in Germany for a few minutes, you will most likely see them: More or less bright points of light that move quickly across the sky. Provided they aren’t blinking, these dots of light are satellites, and there’s a good chance they’re a very specific type of satellite: SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites. Elon Musk’s private space company has launched more than 2,000 of these small satellites into orbit since 2019, and almost 1,900 of them are still active and are currently orbiting the earth.

The flat satellites should provide fast Internet in all corners of the world, including in Germany you can already book and use the “Starlink” service. But in the astronomy community, Elon Musk’s ambitious project – he plans to launch a five-digit number of satellites into different orbits – is controversial. And the US space agency Nasa is concerned.

SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites are frowned upon in the astronomy community

Above all, these two points are met with criticism from professional and amateur sky observers:

  • Criticism one: The satellites can be seen in the sky, despite SpaceX’s best efforts. This does not bother the occasional look at the starry sky, because the satellites are no longer as conspicuous as they used to be several days after the start. But shots with longer exposure times, such as in astrophotography or sky observations with sensitive telescopes, are sometimes severely disturbed by the satellites. Experts even fear that the “Starlink” satellites, which regularly move across the sky, could hinder the search for potentially dangerous, near-Earth asteroids at dawn and dusk.
  • Criticism two: SpaceX has already sent more than 2000 satellites into orbit and has long since become the largest satellite operator. Experts criticize, among other things, that Elon Musk’s company with its large number of satellites is “clogging” the low earth orbit – which is also used by numerous other satellites. In addition, the numerous rocket launches are criticized from an environmental point of view, as well as the large number of satellites that will one day crash and burn up in earth orbit. It is far from clear what effects this will have on the Earth’s atmosphere.

Elon Musk is busy launching rockets with “Starlink” satellites

But SpaceX and Elon Musk are not dissuaded by this criticism and continue to launch their rockets. Even the loss of 40 “Starlink” satellites shortly after launch – they were hit by a solar storm and crashed – did not stop the company from launching numerous “Starlink” satellites for the fifth time in 2022 on Friday (02/25/2022). – Launch satellites into space.

“Starlink” satellites: Like a “string of pearls” or “string of lights” in the dark sky

Even if the satellites are deployed in a higher Earth orbit after the bad experience with the solar storm, they can sometimes be seen brightly in the night sky. The “Starlink” satellites in the sky are particularly noticeable in the first few days after launch: they are still relatively close together and look like a “string of pearls” or “string of lights” in the sky. The “Starlink” satellites are also sometimes described as a “chain of stars”. When SpaceX’s first internet satellites were launched in May 2019, their appearance in the sky was also known as the “Starlink” train or “Starlink” train.

Sometimes the satellites are so conspicuous in the sky, especially in the time after launch, that observers believe they are seeing a UFO. Whenever “Starlink” satellites are launched, the reports at the UFO reporting center pile up. In 2021, reported “Starlink” satellites accounted for 41 percent of the observations reported to the UFO reporting center Cenap. (tab) *fr.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA.

" } ["summary"]=> string(803) "Home page knowledge Created: 05/19/2022, 2:57 p.m Von: Tanja Banner Split Like a “string of lights” or “string of pearls”: “Starlink” satellites from SpaceX move across the night sky. (Archive image) © Belga/Imago Images SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space company, keeps launching “Starlink” satellites into space. If you look carefully at the sky, you can see ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(10002) "
  1. Home page
  2. knowledge

Created:

Von: Tanja Banner

Split

Like a “string of lights” or “string of pearls”: “Starlink” satellites from SpaceX move across the night sky. (Archive image) © Belga/Imago Images

SpaceX, Elon Musk’s space company, keeps launching “Starlink” satellites into space. If you look carefully at the sky, you can see the “string of pearls”.

  • SpaceX, billionaire Elon Musk’s private space company, operates the largest fleet of satellites in Earth orbit.
  • The “Starlink” satellites should enable fast internet in all corners of the earth, but researchers and the US space agency Nasa are concerned.
  • The “Starlinks” are often visible as “strings of pearls” or “strings of lights” in the sky at dusk and dawn.

Update from Wednesday, May 18, 2022: SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites could be clearly visible in the sky again in the near future. In April and May, Elon Musk’s private space company launched six rockets, each carrying 53 Internet satellites, and there are currently 2,405 SpaceX satellites in orbit, of which 2,374 are operational, according to astronomer Jonathan McDowell on his private website.

In May alone, SpaceX sent four rockets, each with 53 satellites, into space – the “Starlink” satellites in particular, which have not been in earth orbit for long, could be seen in the sky. The last rocket launches took place on May 18, 14 and 13, 2022. Experts criticize the numerous rocket launches and fear that the rocket exhaust gases could have an impact on the climate and the earth’s atmosphere.

Important to know

If you spot an inexplicable “string of lights” or “strings of pearls” streaking across the dark sky, there’s a very good chance they’re SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites. Shortly after launch, the satellites are still very close together, so the appearance in the sky can take on other forms.

Strange “light chain” observed in the sky? “Starlink” satellites could be behind it

Update from Thursday, March 03, 2022: “Starlink”, the satellite megaconstellation from SpaceX, which is intended to make fast Internet available worldwide from space, is currently on everyone’s lips: SpaceX boss Elon Musk recently activated the “Starlink” Internet in Ukraine and shortly afterwards corresponding ones Hardware brought to the war-torn country. Today, Thursday (03/03/2022) at 3:35 p.m., a “Falcon 9” rocket from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida transported the next 47 “Starlink” satellites into space.

SpaceX has been considered the largest satellite operator for some time. Before launch on March 3, SpaceX had 1,970 active “Starlink” satellites in Earth orbit, according to observer Jonathan McDowell – after launch, SpaceX will surpass 2,000 active satellites.

Newsletter on astronomy and space travel

What is happening in the sky above our heads? Which topics are researched in astronomy and what drives the space industry? Subscribe to the free FR newsletter and stay up to date!

Elon Musk’s “Starlink” satellite constellation is constantly expanding

First report from Friday, February 25, 2022: Frankfurt – If you look at the starry sky in Germany for a few minutes, you will most likely see them: More or less bright points of light that move quickly across the sky. Provided they aren’t blinking, these dots of light are satellites, and there’s a good chance they’re a very specific type of satellite: SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites. Elon Musk’s private space company has launched more than 2,000 of these small satellites into orbit since 2019, and almost 1,900 of them are still active and are currently orbiting the earth.

The flat satellites should provide fast Internet in all corners of the world, including in Germany you can already book and use the “Starlink” service. But in the astronomy community, Elon Musk’s ambitious project – he plans to launch a five-digit number of satellites into different orbits – is controversial. And the US space agency Nasa is concerned.

SpaceX’s “Starlink” satellites are frowned upon in the astronomy community

Above all, these two points are met with criticism from professional and amateur sky observers:

  • Criticism one: The satellites can be seen in the sky, despite SpaceX’s best efforts. This does not bother the occasional look at the starry sky, because the satellites are no longer as conspicuous as they used to be several days after the start. But shots with longer exposure times, such as in astrophotography or sky observations with sensitive telescopes, are sometimes severely disturbed by the satellites. Experts even fear that the “Starlink” satellites, which regularly move across the sky, could hinder the search for potentially dangerous, near-Earth asteroids at dawn and dusk.
  • Criticism two: SpaceX has already sent more than 2000 satellites into orbit and has long since become the largest satellite operator. Experts criticize, among other things, that Elon Musk’s company with its large number of satellites is “clogging” the low earth orbit – which is also used by numerous other satellites. In addition, the numerous rocket launches are criticized from an environmental point of view, as well as the large number of satellites that will one day crash and burn up in earth orbit. It is far from clear what effects this will have on the Earth’s atmosphere.

Elon Musk is busy launching rockets with “Starlink” satellites

But SpaceX and Elon Musk are not dissuaded by this criticism and continue to launch their rockets. Even the loss of 40 “Starlink” satellites shortly after launch – they were hit by a solar storm and crashed – did not stop the company from launching numerous “Starlink” satellites for the fifth time in 2022 on Friday (02/25/2022). – Launch satellites into space.

“Starlink” satellites: Like a “string of pearls” or “string of lights” in the dark sky

Even if the satellites are deployed in a higher Earth orbit after the bad experience with the solar storm, they can sometimes be seen brightly in the night sky. The “Starlink” satellites in the sky are particularly noticeable in the first few days after launch: they are still relatively close together and look like a “string of pearls” or “string of lights” in the sky. The “Starlink” satellites are also sometimes described as a “chain of stars”. When SpaceX’s first internet satellites were launched in May 2019, their appearance in the sky was also known as the “Starlink” train or “Starlink” train.

Sometimes the satellites are so conspicuous in the sky, especially in the time after launch, that observers believe they are seeing a UFO. Whenever “Starlink” satellites are launched, the reports at the UFO reporting center pile up. In 2021, reported “Starlink” satellites accounted for 41 percent of the observations reported to the UFO reporting center Cenap. (tab) *fr.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA.

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1653172559) } [1]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(41) "The Martian Auroras Are Finally Explained" ["link"]=> string(67) "https://movs.world/space/the-martian-auroras-are-finally-explained/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Sat, 21 May 2022 11:34:48 +0000" ["category"]=> string(35) "SpaceAurorasexplainedfinallyMartian" ["guid"]=> string(67) "https://movs.world/space/the-martian-auroras-are-finally-explained/" ["description"]=> string(544) "Auroras observed on Earth are among the most beautiful phenomena we can see in the skies of the planet. But Earth is not the only place in the Solar System where this phenomenon occurs. An atmospheric glow, often only noticed at wavelengths invisible to our eyes, has now been detected on every planet except Mercury, ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(6127) "

Auroras observed on Earth are among the most beautiful phenomena we can see in the skies of the planet. But Earth is not the only place in the Solar System where this phenomenon occurs.

An atmospheric glow, often only noticed at wavelengths invisible to our eyes, has now been detected on every planet except Mercury, and even on Jupiter’s moons and a comet. But Mars is where the whole thing becomes more interesting. The Red Planet is famous for having lost its global magnetic field, and we’ve always learned that auroras only happen due to the interaction of the Sun’s charged particles with the planet’s magnetic field, so how could that be possible on Mars?

Although Mars has no global magnetic field, that doesn’t mean the planet is completely magnet-free. There are regions of magnetic field located at specific points in the crust, mainly in the southern hemisphere. New analyzes have confirmed that these small, localized magnetic fields interact with the solar wind in interesting ways to produce auroras on Mars. But they are auroras that are only visible in the ultraviolet.

This is the first detailed study of how solar wind conditions affect auroras on Mars. The main finding of the study is that within the region of the strongest crustal magnetic field, the rate of aurora occurrence depends mainly on the orientation of the solar wind’s magnetic field, while outside the region where the crustal magnetic field is strong, the rate of occurrence depends on the dynamic pressure of the solar wind.

Here on Earth, we know well how auroras occur, they appear when particles from the solar wind collide with the Earth’s magnetosphere, and are accelerated along magnetic field lines to the high latitudes where they are then generated. Elsewhere in the Solar System, such as Jupiter, auroras form in the same way.

But on Mars we don’t have that magnetic field, what we have are patches of magnetism preserved in minerals that are still magnetized in the planet’s crust. Ultraviolet images of Mars show that auroras tend to form near these lingering magnetic fields, which makes sense if magnetic field lines are necessary for particle acceleration.

The work also analyzed the conditions of the solar wind. Using data from the MAVEN spacecraft, data on the dynamic pressure of the solar wind, as well as the strength and angle of the interplanetary magnetic field, were compared with ultraviolet data obtained from the Martian aurora. With the study it was possible to discover that outside the magnetic field regions of the crust, the dynamic pressure of the solar wind plays a significant role in the frequency of detection of the aurora.

But the pressure of the solar wind is of little importance in the brightness of the aurorae. This suggests that space weather events such as coronal mass ejections that are associated with increased solar wind pressure could trigger Martian auroras.

Within regions of the crustal magnetic field, the orientation of the magnetic field and the solar wind appear to play an important role in the formation of aurorae on Mars. In certain orientations, the solar wind appears to favor magnetic reconnection events or the process of particle acceleration, processes necessary to produce the aurora glow.

These results reveal new information about how interactions with the solar wind can generate auroras on a planet without a global magnetic field. This information can be used to better understand the formation of discrete aurora on different worlds.

Sources:

https://www.sciencealert.com/we-now-know-how-aurora-might-form-on-mars-without-a-global-magnetic-field

https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1029/2021JA030238

" } ["summary"]=> string(544) "Auroras observed on Earth are among the most beautiful phenomena we can see in the skies of the planet. But Earth is not the only place in the Solar System where this phenomenon occurs. An atmospheric glow, often only noticed at wavelengths invisible to our eyes, has now been detected on every planet except Mercury, ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(6127) "

Auroras observed on Earth are among the most beautiful phenomena we can see in the skies of the planet. But Earth is not the only place in the Solar System where this phenomenon occurs.

An atmospheric glow, often only noticed at wavelengths invisible to our eyes, has now been detected on every planet except Mercury, and even on Jupiter’s moons and a comet. But Mars is where the whole thing becomes more interesting. The Red Planet is famous for having lost its global magnetic field, and we’ve always learned that auroras only happen due to the interaction of the Sun’s charged particles with the planet’s magnetic field, so how could that be possible on Mars?

Although Mars has no global magnetic field, that doesn’t mean the planet is completely magnet-free. There are regions of magnetic field located at specific points in the crust, mainly in the southern hemisphere. New analyzes have confirmed that these small, localized magnetic fields interact with the solar wind in interesting ways to produce auroras on Mars. But they are auroras that are only visible in the ultraviolet.

This is the first detailed study of how solar wind conditions affect auroras on Mars. The main finding of the study is that within the region of the strongest crustal magnetic field, the rate of aurora occurrence depends mainly on the orientation of the solar wind’s magnetic field, while outside the region where the crustal magnetic field is strong, the rate of occurrence depends on the dynamic pressure of the solar wind.

Here on Earth, we know well how auroras occur, they appear when particles from the solar wind collide with the Earth’s magnetosphere, and are accelerated along magnetic field lines to the high latitudes where they are then generated. Elsewhere in the Solar System, such as Jupiter, auroras form in the same way.

But on Mars we don’t have that magnetic field, what we have are patches of magnetism preserved in minerals that are still magnetized in the planet’s crust. Ultraviolet images of Mars show that auroras tend to form near these lingering magnetic fields, which makes sense if magnetic field lines are necessary for particle acceleration.

The work also analyzed the conditions of the solar wind. Using data from the MAVEN spacecraft, data on the dynamic pressure of the solar wind, as well as the strength and angle of the interplanetary magnetic field, were compared with ultraviolet data obtained from the Martian aurora. With the study it was possible to discover that outside the magnetic field regions of the crust, the dynamic pressure of the solar wind plays a significant role in the frequency of detection of the aurora.

But the pressure of the solar wind is of little importance in the brightness of the aurorae. This suggests that space weather events such as coronal mass ejections that are associated with increased solar wind pressure could trigger Martian auroras.

Within regions of the crustal magnetic field, the orientation of the magnetic field and the solar wind appear to play an important role in the formation of aurorae on Mars. In certain orientations, the solar wind appears to favor magnetic reconnection events or the process of particle acceleration, processes necessary to produce the aurora glow.

These results reveal new information about how interactions with the solar wind can generate auroras on a planet without a global magnetic field. This information can be used to better understand the formation of discrete aurora on different worlds.

Sources:

https://www.sciencealert.com/we-now-know-how-aurora-might-form-on-mars-without-a-global-magnetic-field

https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1029/2021JA030238

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1653132888) } [2]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(56) "Mars lander losing power because of dust on solar panels" ["link"]=> string(82) "https://movs.world/space/mars-lander-losing-power-because-of-dust-on-solar-panels/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Thu, 19 May 2022 15:30:52 +0000" ["category"]=> string(48) "SpaceabcnewsDustlanderlosingMarspanelspowersolar" ["guid"]=> string(82) "https://movs.world/space/mars-lander-losing-power-because-of-dust-on-solar-panels/" ["description"]=> string(604) "NASA is being forced to end its Mars lander mission early because of dust. Officials announced Tuesday the InSight spacecraft is slowly losing power because its two solar panels are covered in dust. Morever, the dust levels in the atmosphere are only increasing and sunlight is decreasing as Mars enters winter, which is speeding up ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(5406) "

NASA is being forced to end its Mars lander mission early because of dust.

Officials announced Tuesday the InSight spacecraft is slowly losing power because its two solar panels are covered in dust.

Morever, the dust levels in the atmosphere are only increasing and sunlight is decreasing as Mars enters winter, which is speeding up the loss of power.

Power levels will likely die out in July — effectively ending operations — and, by the end of the year, project leaders expect InSight will be “inoperative.”

One of the dust-covered solar panels on NASA’s InSight Mars lander in an image captured on April 24, 2022. After about four years of probing the interior of Mars, the InSight spacecraft will have to end its operations this summer because of dust that has accumulated on its solar panels.

NASA/JPL-Caltech via Getty Images

“People can obviously relate to, in their own homes, they have to dust because dust settles,” Chuck Scott, InSight’s project manager, told ABC News. “It’s the same sort of thing with these solar panels. We have dust in the Mars atmosphere that gets kicked up because of the local weather … storms where you get the dust kicked up because you have lot of wind.”

“Since Mars’s atmosphere is thinner, it goes up into the upper atmosphere and it can get distributed more widely than it would on Earth and it’ll deposit back down on whatever’s below including our spacecraft and the solar panels,” he added.

InSight is currently generating about one-tenth of the power it was when it landed on Mars in November 2018.

When the spacecraft first landed, the solar panels were producing 5,000 watt-hour for each Martian day, enough to power an electric oven for an hour and 40 minutes, NASA said. Currently, the panels are producing 500 watt-hour per Martian day, only enough to power an electric oven for 10 minutes.

Project leaders had expected the gradual dust buildup on the solar panels, but had hoped passing whirlwinds on Mars might have cleaned some of it off, but none have so far.

“Two rovers we sent back in 2003, they both experienced what we would call ‘natural cleaning’ or ‘dust cleaning events,'” Scott said. “Those winds went over the vehicles and cleared a lot fo the dust off the solar panels of those vehicles. We were were kind of hoping this would occur with a stationary lander.”

Due to the lower power, the team will put InSight’s robotic arm in a resting position known as “retirement pose” later this month. Then, by the end of the summer, the lander’s seismometer will only be turned on at certain times, such as night when winds are not as high.

Because energy is being preserved for the seismometer, NASA said non-seismic instruments “will rarely be turned on” starting next month.

InSight has detected more than 1,300 quakes since its landing, the most recent of which occurred on May 4. The data gathered from the marsquakes have helped scientists understand the composition of Mars’s deep interior, including the planet’s crust, mantle and core.

NASA said the lander had completed its primary goals during its first two years on Mars and was currently on an extended mission.

“There wasn’t really anything known about the interior of Mars,” Scott said. “Why that’s important is NASA had been looking at how our own planets formed in the Solar System. especially the rocky ones like Venus, Earth, Mars and even our own Moon.”

This is not the first time NASA has ended a Mars lander due to dust.

Opportunity, a robotic rover, landed on the planet in 2004 and was in operation until June 2018, when a global dust storm completely covered its solar panels, which ended communications with project leaders.

" } ["summary"]=> string(604) "NASA is being forced to end its Mars lander mission early because of dust. Officials announced Tuesday the InSight spacecraft is slowly losing power because its two solar panels are covered in dust. Morever, the dust levels in the atmosphere are only increasing and sunlight is decreasing as Mars enters winter, which is speeding up ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(5406) "

NASA is being forced to end its Mars lander mission early because of dust.

Officials announced Tuesday the InSight spacecraft is slowly losing power because its two solar panels are covered in dust.

Morever, the dust levels in the atmosphere are only increasing and sunlight is decreasing as Mars enters winter, which is speeding up the loss of power.

Power levels will likely die out in July — effectively ending operations — and, by the end of the year, project leaders expect InSight will be “inoperative.”

One of the dust-covered solar panels on NASA’s InSight Mars lander in an image captured on April 24, 2022. After about four years of probing the interior of Mars, the InSight spacecraft will have to end its operations this summer because of dust that has accumulated on its solar panels.

NASA/JPL-Caltech via Getty Images

“People can obviously relate to, in their own homes, they have to dust because dust settles,” Chuck Scott, InSight’s project manager, told ABC News. “It’s the same sort of thing with these solar panels. We have dust in the Mars atmosphere that gets kicked up because of the local weather … storms where you get the dust kicked up because you have lot of wind.”

“Since Mars’s atmosphere is thinner, it goes up into the upper atmosphere and it can get distributed more widely than it would on Earth and it’ll deposit back down on whatever’s below including our spacecraft and the solar panels,” he added.

InSight is currently generating about one-tenth of the power it was when it landed on Mars in November 2018.

When the spacecraft first landed, the solar panels were producing 5,000 watt-hour for each Martian day, enough to power an electric oven for an hour and 40 minutes, NASA said. Currently, the panels are producing 500 watt-hour per Martian day, only enough to power an electric oven for 10 minutes.

Project leaders had expected the gradual dust buildup on the solar panels, but had hoped passing whirlwinds on Mars might have cleaned some of it off, but none have so far.

“Two rovers we sent back in 2003, they both experienced what we would call ‘natural cleaning’ or ‘dust cleaning events,'” Scott said. “Those winds went over the vehicles and cleared a lot fo the dust off the solar panels of those vehicles. We were were kind of hoping this would occur with a stationary lander.”

Due to the lower power, the team will put InSight’s robotic arm in a resting position known as “retirement pose” later this month. Then, by the end of the summer, the lander’s seismometer will only be turned on at certain times, such as night when winds are not as high.

Because energy is being preserved for the seismometer, NASA said non-seismic instruments “will rarely be turned on” starting next month.

InSight has detected more than 1,300 quakes since its landing, the most recent of which occurred on May 4. The data gathered from the marsquakes have helped scientists understand the composition of Mars’s deep interior, including the planet’s crust, mantle and core.

NASA said the lander had completed its primary goals during its first two years on Mars and was currently on an extended mission.

“There wasn’t really anything known about the interior of Mars,” Scott said. “Why that’s important is NASA had been looking at how our own planets formed in the Solar System. especially the rocky ones like Venus, Earth, Mars and even our own Moon.”

This is not the first time NASA has ended a Mars lander due to dust.

Opportunity, a robotic rover, landed on the planet in 2004 and was in operation until June 2018, when a global dust storm completely covered its solar panels, which ended communications with project leaders.

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1652974252) } [3]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(33) "Some Surprising Uses for Hydrogen" ["link"]=> string(59) "https://movs.world/space/some-surprising-uses-for-hydrogen/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Thu, 19 May 2022 04:29:37 +0000" ["category"]=> string(23) "Spacehydrogensurprising" ["guid"]=> string(59) "https://movs.world/space/some-surprising-uses-for-hydrogen/" ["description"]=> string(543) "Hydrogen is one of the simplest chemical compounds out there. In fact, of all chemical substances, it is perhaps the simplest that humans regularly use. Hydrogen takes its name from the Greek word for “water” or “liquid”; the Germans call it Wasserstoff, literally “water substance”. This gives us a clue, of course, to the most ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(12381) "

Hydrogen is one of the simplest chemical compounds out there.

In fact, of all chemical substances, it is perhaps the simplest that humans regularly use. Hydrogen takes its name from the Greek word for “water” or “liquid”; the Germans call it Wasserstoff, literally “water substance”. This gives us a clue, of course, to the most fundamental role of hydrogen – to combine with an oxygen atom and give us the most important substance on the planet, the water that we all need to live, and which makes up over 70% of our bodies.

Hydrogen, in its elemental state, is also a highly flammable material. We are all aware of the terrible Hindenburg disaster, in which the famous zeppelin exploded on account of a spark occurring during docking – this ignited the highly flammable substance used on the airship’s material which naturally led to the infamous explosion. This tragedy, well illustrates the amount of latent energy inside hydrogen, which is one of the things which gives it a great many applications (although it will be forever stored with nearby warning safety signs).

It is no surprise, then, that such a fundamental molecule (hydrogen normally appears as two hydrogen atoms bonded together as an H2 molecule) has a truly vast range of applications. Some of these you will be more than familiar with as they are a fundamental part of modern life, others are more niche and might not be quite so well known. Others still might not even be in existence yet, as hydrogen is frequently touted as a fundamental substance for all manner of new products, technologies, and energy solutions into the future. It’s been with us for all of our existence, and we’ll be making use of it for some time yet.

Hydrogen Fuel

It might have been electric cars that won the day in terms of environmentally friendly road travel, but hydrogen fuel – which produces nothing but water as a by-product – has been touted for a long time as a potential fuel source for all manner of surprising applications. And it hasn’t been defeated yet. The future of hydrogen fuel looks promising, and its day as a primary energy source might yet come. Hydrogen-powered vehicles, for example, are far from off the table, and the reason for this is that the current electric vehicles that are being rolled out across the globe have some serious challenges to overcome if they are truly to become as ubiquitous as the gas-powered vehicle has been.

For example, while the operation of an electric vehicle might produce no emissions, their manufacture, and especially the manufacture of the large li-ion batteries that power them, is very certainly not an environmentally friendly process. In fact, each stage of this process presents its own environmental challenges which are yet to be overcome. First of all, the mining of the lithium needed to produce li-ion EV batteries is an ecologically harmful process, which can damage local water supplies and is incredibly energy intensive. Furthermore, to manufacture enough batteries to completely replace the gas-powered vehicle, lithium mining will need to be stepped up, not down. Furthermore, lithium is very unevenly distributed about the world, meaning that a handful of countries have a monopoly on lithium mining. One of these countries is China, which in itself raises all sorts of geopolitical issues.

The second stage of the EV battery production process is the actual manufacture of these batteries, which is also an energy intensive and environmentally harmful process. And, finally, li-ion batteries are also exceedingly difficult to recycle – and they are currently not recycled at the rate necessary to offset environmental impact.

These challenges could be overcome, but until they are, hydrogen will remain as one of the primary contenders among alternative fuels. Actually, it is already used as a fuel in certain special applications.

Innovative Hydrogen Products

Hydrogen has had many traditional uses, which we will get onto in a moment, but it is also finding many new applications in modern science and technology, besides the fuel.

the uses of hydrogen water Hydrogen Water

Hydrogen water is a new health product that is proving exceptionally popular. But wait, doesn’t water already contain hydrogen? It certainly does but it is bonded with oxygen to make the water molecule H2O. Hydrogen water, on the other hand, contains pure hydrogen (the H2 molecule) suspended in “normal” water as gas. This has been said to have many health benefits, all revolving around the much smaller size of this molecule (hydrogen is one of the smallest molecules) and how this makes it easier to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Among the most useful benefits are more effective hydration, improved concentration, and a reduction in bodily inflammation.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Naturally, hydrogen is necessary for the manufacture of hydrogen peroxide. Most are aware of this product’s use in dying hair, but it also has applications in dental health and disinfection. In fact, as time goes on, people are finding more and more uses for this incredibly versatile compound.

Surprising Uses for Hydrogen

At the less well-known end of the spectrum, here follows some unusual, new, or innovative uses for the universe’s most basic element:

The Manufacture of Ammonia and Ethanol

Something many people do not realise when it comes to the uses for hydrogen, is that it is actually involved in the manufacture of many incredibly useful compounds not immediately identified with hydrogen itself. Ammonia and ethanol (alcohol) are two of the most useful, each having a list of applications which would simply be long to state here.

Welding

Oxyhydrogen torches, a little-known product outside of the specific industries in which it is used, is actually the most efficient welding tool out there. The energy in an oxyhydrogen torch is derived from the powerful reaction between oxygen and hydrogen.

Lifting Gas

Hydrogen is used in some contexts as a lifting gas. Helium is much denser than hydrogen, which makes it unsuitable for high-altitude ballooning (e.g., weather balloons and certain space travel devices) because of the effects of pressure. Hydrogen is still used in these contexts.

Trains

Hydrogen-powered trains are now a reality. They exist in Germany and their effectiveness is such that there are plans now to also introduce them in Great Britain, France, Italy, and Japan. In rail travel, there is also no competition from battery power.

Hydrogen use is one of the constants of all human technology and innovation. This just goes to show how fundamental to human life this substance is. There has never been a time in modern history when it has not been used and it seems like that time isn’t going to come any time soon either.

" } ["summary"]=> string(543) "Hydrogen is one of the simplest chemical compounds out there. In fact, of all chemical substances, it is perhaps the simplest that humans regularly use. Hydrogen takes its name from the Greek word for “water” or “liquid”; the Germans call it Wasserstoff, literally “water substance”. This gives us a clue, of course, to the most ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(12381) "

Hydrogen is one of the simplest chemical compounds out there.

In fact, of all chemical substances, it is perhaps the simplest that humans regularly use. Hydrogen takes its name from the Greek word for “water” or “liquid”; the Germans call it Wasserstoff, literally “water substance”. This gives us a clue, of course, to the most fundamental role of hydrogen – to combine with an oxygen atom and give us the most important substance on the planet, the water that we all need to live, and which makes up over 70% of our bodies.

Hydrogen, in its elemental state, is also a highly flammable material. We are all aware of the terrible Hindenburg disaster, in which the famous zeppelin exploded on account of a spark occurring during docking – this ignited the highly flammable substance used on the airship’s material which naturally led to the infamous explosion. This tragedy, well illustrates the amount of latent energy inside hydrogen, which is one of the things which gives it a great many applications (although it will be forever stored with nearby warning safety signs).

It is no surprise, then, that such a fundamental molecule (hydrogen normally appears as two hydrogen atoms bonded together as an H2 molecule) has a truly vast range of applications. Some of these you will be more than familiar with as they are a fundamental part of modern life, others are more niche and might not be quite so well known. Others still might not even be in existence yet, as hydrogen is frequently touted as a fundamental substance for all manner of new products, technologies, and energy solutions into the future. It’s been with us for all of our existence, and we’ll be making use of it for some time yet.

Hydrogen Fuel

It might have been electric cars that won the day in terms of environmentally friendly road travel, but hydrogen fuel – which produces nothing but water as a by-product – has been touted for a long time as a potential fuel source for all manner of surprising applications. And it hasn’t been defeated yet. The future of hydrogen fuel looks promising, and its day as a primary energy source might yet come. Hydrogen-powered vehicles, for example, are far from off the table, and the reason for this is that the current electric vehicles that are being rolled out across the globe have some serious challenges to overcome if they are truly to become as ubiquitous as the gas-powered vehicle has been.

For example, while the operation of an electric vehicle might produce no emissions, their manufacture, and especially the manufacture of the large li-ion batteries that power them, is very certainly not an environmentally friendly process. In fact, each stage of this process presents its own environmental challenges which are yet to be overcome. First of all, the mining of the lithium needed to produce li-ion EV batteries is an ecologically harmful process, which can damage local water supplies and is incredibly energy intensive. Furthermore, to manufacture enough batteries to completely replace the gas-powered vehicle, lithium mining will need to be stepped up, not down. Furthermore, lithium is very unevenly distributed about the world, meaning that a handful of countries have a monopoly on lithium mining. One of these countries is China, which in itself raises all sorts of geopolitical issues.

The second stage of the EV battery production process is the actual manufacture of these batteries, which is also an energy intensive and environmentally harmful process. And, finally, li-ion batteries are also exceedingly difficult to recycle – and they are currently not recycled at the rate necessary to offset environmental impact.

These challenges could be overcome, but until they are, hydrogen will remain as one of the primary contenders among alternative fuels. Actually, it is already used as a fuel in certain special applications.

Innovative Hydrogen Products

Hydrogen has had many traditional uses, which we will get onto in a moment, but it is also finding many new applications in modern science and technology, besides the fuel.

the uses of hydrogen water Hydrogen Water

Hydrogen water is a new health product that is proving exceptionally popular. But wait, doesn’t water already contain hydrogen? It certainly does but it is bonded with oxygen to make the water molecule H2O. Hydrogen water, on the other hand, contains pure hydrogen (the H2 molecule) suspended in “normal” water as gas. This has been said to have many health benefits, all revolving around the much smaller size of this molecule (hydrogen is one of the smallest molecules) and how this makes it easier to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Among the most useful benefits are more effective hydration, improved concentration, and a reduction in bodily inflammation.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Naturally, hydrogen is necessary for the manufacture of hydrogen peroxide. Most are aware of this product’s use in dying hair, but it also has applications in dental health and disinfection. In fact, as time goes on, people are finding more and more uses for this incredibly versatile compound.

Surprising Uses for Hydrogen

At the less well-known end of the spectrum, here follows some unusual, new, or innovative uses for the universe’s most basic element:

The Manufacture of Ammonia and Ethanol

Something many people do not realise when it comes to the uses for hydrogen, is that it is actually involved in the manufacture of many incredibly useful compounds not immediately identified with hydrogen itself. Ammonia and ethanol (alcohol) are two of the most useful, each having a list of applications which would simply be long to state here.

Welding

Oxyhydrogen torches, a little-known product outside of the specific industries in which it is used, is actually the most efficient welding tool out there. The energy in an oxyhydrogen torch is derived from the powerful reaction between oxygen and hydrogen.

Lifting Gas

Hydrogen is used in some contexts as a lifting gas. Helium is much denser than hydrogen, which makes it unsuitable for high-altitude ballooning (e.g., weather balloons and certain space travel devices) because of the effects of pressure. Hydrogen is still used in these contexts.

Trains

Hydrogen-powered trains are now a reality. They exist in Germany and their effectiveness is such that there are plans now to also introduce them in Great Britain, France, Italy, and Japan. In rail travel, there is also no competition from battery power.

Hydrogen use is one of the constants of all human technology and innovation. This just goes to show how fundamental to human life this substance is. There has never been a time in modern history when it has not been used and it seems like that time isn’t going to come any time soon either.

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1652934577) } [4]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(87) "Royal Caribbean updates: Odyssey of the Seas cancellations, SpaceX investigation & more" ["link"]=> string(109) "https://movs.world/space/royal-caribbean-updates-odyssey-of-the-seas-cancellations-spacex-investigation-more/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Wed, 18 May 2022 17:28:30 +0000" ["category"]=> string(69) "SpacecancellationscaribbeaninvestigationodysseyRoyalseasSpacexupdates" ["guid"]=> string(109) "https://movs.world/space/royal-caribbean-updates-odyssey-of-the-seas-cancellations-spacex-investigation-more/" ["description"]=> string(688) "There’s plenty happening with Royal Caribbean this week, so here is a quick wrap-up of changes and announcements you should know. Things move quickly in the cruise industry, so to keep you up to date with the news, this article has a few different things that have happened this week. Let’s take a look at ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(5722) "

There’s plenty happening with Royal Caribbean this week, so here is a quick wrap-up of changes and announcements you should know.

Things move quickly in the cruise industry, so to keep you up to date with the news, this article has a few different things that have happened this week.

Let’s take a look at this week’s Royal Caribbean cruise news.

Odyssey of the Seas cruise cancellations

There’s a bit of a log jam in Fort Lauderdale, Florida this fall, which has necessitated a few Odyssey of the Seas cruises to be changed.

Royal Caribbean alerted travel agents that Odyssey of the Seas cruises departing between December 17, 2022 and December 31, 2022 have been revised. Essentially, the departure dates have changed and that means anyone who was booked on one of these cruises needs to pick a new sailing.

Guests have the option of staying booked on the revised sailing, which departs a day earlier, re-book to other sailing minus change fees, or a full refund.

Royal Caribbean will reimburse passengers for non-refundable, pre-purchased transportation change fees incurred (such as flight, train ticket, or rental car).

  • If they stay on Odyssey: up to $300 USD per guest for Domestic changes, or up to $500 USD per guest for International changes.
  • If they pick another sailing: up to $200 USD per guest for Domestic changes, or up to $400 USD per guest for International changes.

Coast Guard concludes investigation into Royal Caribbean SpaceX incursion

Remember in January 2022 when a SpaceX launch was cancelled because Harmony of the Seas got too close to the launch site?

The Coast Guard wrapped up its investigation of Harmony of the Seas moving within the safety zone.

Prior to any SpaceX launch, there is an exclusion zone established so that no planes, ships, etc are able to enter the space, which adjoins against the second busiest cruise and shipping port in the country at Port Canaveral.

The Harmony of the Seas’ crew got underway from Port Canaveral and began voyaging toward the Bahamas. Harmony of the Seas entered an established safety zone, designed to ensure the safety of the public during the Cosmo Skymed rocket launch, without proper authorization. The launch was ultimately cancelled due to the encroachment into the surveilled launch hazard area.

“We are committed to protecting the maritime transportation system as well as finding the best practices to manage the intersection of space and maritime operations,” said Capt. Janet D. Espino-Young, prevention division chief, Coast Guard District Seven.

The statement went on to say the Coast Guard may pursue administrative enforcement actions, but did not specify if it would do so. Such actions may include monetary fines and or future vessel control actions.

Cruise planner update for Grandeur & Enchantment of the Seas

Good news for anyone that is booked on an upcoming Grandeur of the Seas or Enchantment of the Seas sailing: expect the enhanced cruise planner.

Over the last year, Royal Caribbean introduced its next generation cruise planning software, called My Royal Cruise.

My Royal Cruise is a new look to the website guests access to browse options and add-ons for their sailing.

Guests booked onboard Grandeur of the Seas sailings departing on or after May 27, 2022 and Enchantment of the Seas sailings departing on or after June 24, 2022, will now see the My Royal Cruise platform with all their existing bookings seamlessly and automatically transferred.

Casino Royale makes change to free cruise program

Casino Royale is informing guests of its popular program of a change to how free cruises are earned.

According to TheStreet, Royal Caribbean’s casino rewards program has changed how it offers free sailing offers.

“Our certificate program recently changed. We no longer offer prequalified certificates, that are based on the previous sailing. We still have a certificate program, but now they are based on the active sailing and are awarded at the end of the sailing,” the company said.

The free casino offers are based on how much a person gambles in the casino. You earn points on slots at 1 point for every $5 fed through the machines. Tables earn at different and varying rates.

The first casino status level you can hit is at 2500 points, which means you’re probably gambling about $12,500 in order to hit that threshold.

You have the entire year to earn that 2500 points which will qualify you at prime for the rest of the qualifying year and through the entire next year. Prime benefits include a free interior stateroom cruise, no convenience charge to get cash from the cashier or at the tables and also free drinks while in the casino.

Royal Caribbean sends first cruise ship in 3 years to visit Haines, Alaska

Another milestone in the cruise industry restart has been reached with the arrival of Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas to Haines, Alaska this week.

The arrival of Serenade to Haines is the first time in three years a large cruise ship has visited the port.

The last visit was in September 2019.

" } ["summary"]=> string(688) "There’s plenty happening with Royal Caribbean this week, so here is a quick wrap-up of changes and announcements you should know. Things move quickly in the cruise industry, so to keep you up to date with the news, this article has a few different things that have happened this week. Let’s take a look at ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(5722) "

There’s plenty happening with Royal Caribbean this week, so here is a quick wrap-up of changes and announcements you should know.

Things move quickly in the cruise industry, so to keep you up to date with the news, this article has a few different things that have happened this week.

Let’s take a look at this week’s Royal Caribbean cruise news.

Odyssey of the Seas cruise cancellations

There’s a bit of a log jam in Fort Lauderdale, Florida this fall, which has necessitated a few Odyssey of the Seas cruises to be changed.

Royal Caribbean alerted travel agents that Odyssey of the Seas cruises departing between December 17, 2022 and December 31, 2022 have been revised. Essentially, the departure dates have changed and that means anyone who was booked on one of these cruises needs to pick a new sailing.

Guests have the option of staying booked on the revised sailing, which departs a day earlier, re-book to other sailing minus change fees, or a full refund.

Royal Caribbean will reimburse passengers for non-refundable, pre-purchased transportation change fees incurred (such as flight, train ticket, or rental car).

  • If they stay on Odyssey: up to $300 USD per guest for Domestic changes, or up to $500 USD per guest for International changes.
  • If they pick another sailing: up to $200 USD per guest for Domestic changes, or up to $400 USD per guest for International changes.

Coast Guard concludes investigation into Royal Caribbean SpaceX incursion

Remember in January 2022 when a SpaceX launch was cancelled because Harmony of the Seas got too close to the launch site?

The Coast Guard wrapped up its investigation of Harmony of the Seas moving within the safety zone.

Prior to any SpaceX launch, there is an exclusion zone established so that no planes, ships, etc are able to enter the space, which adjoins against the second busiest cruise and shipping port in the country at Port Canaveral.

The Harmony of the Seas’ crew got underway from Port Canaveral and began voyaging toward the Bahamas. Harmony of the Seas entered an established safety zone, designed to ensure the safety of the public during the Cosmo Skymed rocket launch, without proper authorization. The launch was ultimately cancelled due to the encroachment into the surveilled launch hazard area.

“We are committed to protecting the maritime transportation system as well as finding the best practices to manage the intersection of space and maritime operations,” said Capt. Janet D. Espino-Young, prevention division chief, Coast Guard District Seven.

The statement went on to say the Coast Guard may pursue administrative enforcement actions, but did not specify if it would do so. Such actions may include monetary fines and or future vessel control actions.

Cruise planner update for Grandeur & Enchantment of the Seas

Good news for anyone that is booked on an upcoming Grandeur of the Seas or Enchantment of the Seas sailing: expect the enhanced cruise planner.

Over the last year, Royal Caribbean introduced its next generation cruise planning software, called My Royal Cruise.

My Royal Cruise is a new look to the website guests access to browse options and add-ons for their sailing.

Guests booked onboard Grandeur of the Seas sailings departing on or after May 27, 2022 and Enchantment of the Seas sailings departing on or after June 24, 2022, will now see the My Royal Cruise platform with all their existing bookings seamlessly and automatically transferred.

Casino Royale makes change to free cruise program

Casino Royale is informing guests of its popular program of a change to how free cruises are earned.

According to TheStreet, Royal Caribbean’s casino rewards program has changed how it offers free sailing offers.

“Our certificate program recently changed. We no longer offer prequalified certificates, that are based on the previous sailing. We still have a certificate program, but now they are based on the active sailing and are awarded at the end of the sailing,” the company said.

The free casino offers are based on how much a person gambles in the casino. You earn points on slots at 1 point for every $5 fed through the machines. Tables earn at different and varying rates.

The first casino status level you can hit is at 2500 points, which means you’re probably gambling about $12,500 in order to hit that threshold.

You have the entire year to earn that 2500 points which will qualify you at prime for the rest of the qualifying year and through the entire next year. Prime benefits include a free interior stateroom cruise, no convenience charge to get cash from the cashier or at the tables and also free drinks while in the casino.

Royal Caribbean sends first cruise ship in 3 years to visit Haines, Alaska

Another milestone in the cruise industry restart has been reached with the arrival of Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas to Haines, Alaska this week.

The arrival of Serenade to Haines is the first time in three years a large cruise ship has visited the port.

The last visit was in September 2019.

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1652894910) } [5]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(71) "Head-To-Head Review: Virgin Orbit (NASDAQ:VORB) vs. NextNav (NASDAQ:NN)" ["link"]=> string(89) "https://movs.world/space/head-to-head-review-virgin-orbit-nasdaqvorb-vs-nextnav-nasdaqnn/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Wed, 18 May 2022 06:27:34 +0000" ["category"]=> string(141) "SpaceAerospacecomparisonheadtoheadNASDAQ: SPEAKINGNASDAQ:NNNASDAQVORBNextNavorbitReviewspeechstock analysisstock comparisonVirginvirgin orbit" ["guid"]=> string(89) "https://movs.world/space/head-to-head-review-virgin-orbit-nasdaqvorb-vs-nextnav-nasdaqnn/" ["description"]=> string(699) "Virgin Orbit (NASDAQ:VORB – Get Rating) and NextNav (NASDAQ:NN – Get Rating) are both small-cap aerospace companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, risk and dividends. Analyst Recommendations This is a summary of current ratings and ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(6116) "

Virgin Orbit (NASDAQ:VORB – Get Rating) and NextNav (NASDAQ:NN – Get Rating) are both small-cap aerospace companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, risk and dividends.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and price targets for Virgin Orbit and NextNav, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Virgin Orbit 0 0 2 0 3.00
NextNav 0 0 3 0 3.00

Virgin Orbit currently has a consensus price target of $16.00, indicating a potential upside of 229.90%. NextNav has a consensus price target of $14.75, indicating a potential upside of 213.16%. Given Virgin Orbit’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Virgin Orbit is more favorable than NextNav.

Profitability

This table compares Virgin Orbit and NextNav’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Virgin Orbit N/A -193.46% -31.68%
NextNav N/A -250.72% -29.32%

Institutional and Insider Ownership

52.1% of Virgin Orbit shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 66.5% of NextNav shares are owned by institutional investors. 15.7% of NextNav shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Virgin Orbit and NextNav’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Virgin Orbit $7.39 million 31.38 -$157.29 million N/A N/A
NextNav $760,000.00 598.38 -$144.67 million N/A N/A

NextNav has lower revenue, but higher earnings than Virgin Orbit.

Summary

NextNav beats Virgin Orbit on 6 of the 9 factors compared between the two stocks.

Virgin Orbit Company Profile (Get Rating)

Virgin Orbit Holdings, Inc. designs and develops launch solutions for small satellites. It offers launch services for national security and defense; rideshare satellite launch services; civil spaceports; and space solutions. The company is headquartered in Long Beach, California. Virgin Orbit Holdings, Inc. is a subsidiary of Vieco 10 Ltd.

NextNav Company Profile (Get Rating)

NextNav Inc. provides next generation global positioning system (GPS) and 3D geolocation services. The company delivers next generation positioning, navigation, and timing solutions through its network-based Pinnacle and TerraPoiNT solutions. Its Pinnacle 3D geolocation service is commercially available in approximately 4,400 cities and towns in the United States; and its TerraPoiNT terrestrial-based encrypted network has deployments in 51 total markets nationally. The company sells its solutions directly to customers or through partners. The company was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in McLean, Virginia.



Receive News & Ratings for Virgin Orbit Daily – Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts’ ratings for Virgin Orbit and related companies with MarketBeat.com’s FREE daily email newsletter.

" } ["summary"]=> string(699) "Virgin Orbit (NASDAQ:VORB – Get Rating) and NextNav (NASDAQ:NN – Get Rating) are both small-cap aerospace companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, risk and dividends. Analyst Recommendations This is a summary of current ratings and ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(6116) "

Virgin Orbit (NASDAQ:VORB – Get Rating) and NextNav (NASDAQ:NN – Get Rating) are both small-cap aerospace companies, but which is the better business? We will compare the two companies based on the strength of their institutional ownership, profitability, analyst recommendations, valuation, earnings, risk and dividends.

Analyst Recommendations

This is a summary of current ratings and price targets for Virgin Orbit and NextNav, as provided by MarketBeat.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Virgin Orbit 0 0 2 0 3.00
NextNav 0 0 3 0 3.00

Virgin Orbit currently has a consensus price target of $16.00, indicating a potential upside of 229.90%. NextNav has a consensus price target of $14.75, indicating a potential upside of 213.16%. Given Virgin Orbit’s higher possible upside, analysts clearly believe Virgin Orbit is more favorable than NextNav.

Profitability

This table compares Virgin Orbit and NextNav’s net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Virgin Orbit N/A -193.46% -31.68%
NextNav N/A -250.72% -29.32%

Institutional and Insider Ownership

52.1% of Virgin Orbit shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 66.5% of NextNav shares are owned by institutional investors. 15.7% of NextNav shares are owned by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a company is poised for long-term growth.

Valuation and Earnings

This table compares Virgin Orbit and NextNav’s revenue, earnings per share (EPS) and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Virgin Orbit $7.39 million 31.38 -$157.29 million N/A N/A
NextNav $760,000.00 598.38 -$144.67 million N/A N/A

NextNav has lower revenue, but higher earnings than Virgin Orbit.

Summary

NextNav beats Virgin Orbit on 6 of the 9 factors compared between the two stocks.

Virgin Orbit Company Profile (Get Rating)

Virgin Orbit Holdings, Inc. designs and develops launch solutions for small satellites. It offers launch services for national security and defense; rideshare satellite launch services; civil spaceports; and space solutions. The company is headquartered in Long Beach, California. Virgin Orbit Holdings, Inc. is a subsidiary of Vieco 10 Ltd.

NextNav Company Profile (Get Rating)

NextNav Inc. provides next generation global positioning system (GPS) and 3D geolocation services. The company delivers next generation positioning, navigation, and timing solutions through its network-based Pinnacle and TerraPoiNT solutions. Its Pinnacle 3D geolocation service is commercially available in approximately 4,400 cities and towns in the United States; and its TerraPoiNT terrestrial-based encrypted network has deployments in 51 total markets nationally. The company sells its solutions directly to customers or through partners. The company was founded in 2007 and is headquartered in McLean, Virginia.



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" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1652855254) } [6]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(48) "SpaceX setback: Starbase approval denied for now" ["link"]=> string(73) "https://movs.world/space/spacex-setback-starbase-approval-denied-for-now/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Tue, 17 May 2022 19:26:56 +0000" ["category"]=> string(141) "SpaceapprovaldeniedElon MuskFalcon 9generalResearch & SciencerocketRocket launchsetbacksmall mouthSpace travelSpaceshipSpacexStarbaseStarship" ["guid"]=> string(73) "https://movs.world/space/spacex-setback-starbase-approval-denied-for-now/" ["description"]=> string(573) "SpaceX wants to build a spaceport in Boca Chica, Texas. But such an undertaking is of course associated with many conditions and here Elon Musk’s rumfahrt company had to suffer a setback because approval was refused. The Army Corps of Engineers is the engineering corps of the US armed forces and is not only responsible ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(3534) "


SpaceX wants to build a spaceport in Boca Chica, Texas. But such an undertaking is of course associated with many conditions and here Elon Musk’s rumfahrt company had to suffer a setback because approval was refused.

The Army Corps of Engineers is the engineering corps of the US armed forces and is not only responsible for the construction and maintenance of military installations. It also has an important civil function and performs various civil engineering services for the government. This also includes approval procedures such as the current one in connection with the expansion of the SpaceX spaceport called Starbase.

Permission was denied

Specifically, this involved an audit in connection with water protection, which is or has been carried out on behalf of the government. But this case has now been closed and without a positive outcome for SpaceX. As The Verge reports, the Army Corps of Engineers closed the case because SpaceX was unable to provide the required documents.

Specifically, the engineer corps wanted to know what measures SpaceX intends to take to compensate for or intercept the loss of water and the wetlands around the starbase. Because SpaceX has to ensure that the water protection laws “Clean Water Act” and “Rivers and Harbors Act” are not violated.

The renewed approval is necessary because SpaceX originally only carried out launches on a smaller scale on the site purchased in 2012. But these are to be greatly expanded in the future: not only Falcon 9 rockets are to be launched in Boca Chica, but above all the two-stage Starship together with the Super Heavy Booster.

FAA is still testing

However, the water test that has now been discontinued is a temporary measure, at least if SpaceX subsequently delivers the required documents. Should that happen, the Corps can immediately reopen the case. However, this does not mean that launches can be carried out immediately on the extended site.

Because the process of the US aviation authority is running parallel to this, the FAA is responsible for the general environmental impact assessment – and only announced a renewed postponement of the deadline to the end of April at the end of March.

See also:


Outer Space, Astronautics, Spacex, Rocket, Spaceship, Rocket Launch, Falcon

" } ["summary"]=> string(573) "SpaceX wants to build a spaceport in Boca Chica, Texas. But such an undertaking is of course associated with many conditions and here Elon Musk’s rumfahrt company had to suffer a setback because approval was refused. The Army Corps of Engineers is the engineering corps of the US armed forces and is not only responsible ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(3534) "


SpaceX wants to build a spaceport in Boca Chica, Texas. But such an undertaking is of course associated with many conditions and here Elon Musk’s rumfahrt company had to suffer a setback because approval was refused.

The Army Corps of Engineers is the engineering corps of the US armed forces and is not only responsible for the construction and maintenance of military installations. It also has an important civil function and performs various civil engineering services for the government. This also includes approval procedures such as the current one in connection with the expansion of the SpaceX spaceport called Starbase.

Permission was denied

Specifically, this involved an audit in connection with water protection, which is or has been carried out on behalf of the government. But this case has now been closed and without a positive outcome for SpaceX. As The Verge reports, the Army Corps of Engineers closed the case because SpaceX was unable to provide the required documents.

Specifically, the engineer corps wanted to know what measures SpaceX intends to take to compensate for or intercept the loss of water and the wetlands around the starbase. Because SpaceX has to ensure that the water protection laws “Clean Water Act” and “Rivers and Harbors Act” are not violated.

The renewed approval is necessary because SpaceX originally only carried out launches on a smaller scale on the site purchased in 2012. But these are to be greatly expanded in the future: not only Falcon 9 rockets are to be launched in Boca Chica, but above all the two-stage Starship together with the Super Heavy Booster.

FAA is still testing

However, the water test that has now been discontinued is a temporary measure, at least if SpaceX subsequently delivers the required documents. Should that happen, the Corps can immediately reopen the case. However, this does not mean that launches can be carried out immediately on the extended site.

Because the process of the US aviation authority is running parallel to this, the FAA is responsible for the general environmental impact assessment – and only announced a renewed postponement of the deadline to the end of April at the end of March.

See also:


Outer Space, Astronautics, Spacex, Rocket, Spaceship, Rocket Launch, Falcon

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1652815616) } [7]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(52) "Cosmic rays and interplanetary travel – part three" ["link"]=> string(74) "https://movs.world/space/cosmic-rays-and-interplanetary-travel-part-three/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Sun, 06 Feb 2022 17:37:36 +0000" ["category"]=> string(39) "SpaceCosmicinterplanetarypartRaystravel" ["guid"]=> string(74) "https://movs.world/space/cosmic-rays-and-interplanetary-travel-part-three/" ["description"]=> string(598) "​ Introduction ​ Any science fiction enthusiast will admit that the above dialogue sounds better than if the captain’s phrase was “leave your positions, hide in bathrooms” (which is why I explain to bathrooms in part II). And thus, if the prospect of relocation to the Martian base is to be one day attractive to ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(15022) "

Introduction


Any science fiction enthusiast will admit that the above dialogue sounds better than if the captain’s phrase was “leave your positions, hide in bathrooms” (which is why I explain to bathrooms in part II). And thus, if the prospect of relocation to the Martian base is to be one day attractive to a wide group of high-class specialists (among whom, of course, there is an overrepresentation of geeks), this is – as all serious studies show* – the ships of the future should be as faithful as possible to the ideas of Star Trek enthusiasts about interplanetary travel. Shields in the form of a “force field” are, on the other hand, a characteristic attribute of all futuristic spacecraft.

* there are no such studies

However, do such concepts make practical sense in the context of protecting passengers against radiation? This question can be answered evasively, formulating a non-controversial conclusion that active shields are definitely not necessary.

Initially, manned interplanetary ships will only be equipped with “primitive” shelters (where primitive does not have to mean uncomfortable, as argued and illustrated in detail in the previous entry), shielding astronauts from potentially dangerous particles – in the case of, for example, a mission to Mars, it is a fully sufficient remedy for the problem of radiation.

In the long run, however – although this may theoretically be shortened to e.g. 30-40 years, taking into account the development potential of the sector New Space – i.e. when humanity begins to venture longer and longer journeys, systems that ensure permanent protection not only of all decks of the ship, and even its immediate surroundings (e.g. research instruments located outside, after all, precise electronics are susceptible to “Radiation sickness” like living organisms). Especially since, apart from traveling from A to B, one can imagine orbital base stations where the inhabitants will spend many years (and remember that any possible health repercussions of ionizing radiation are distant in time).

Surrounding the entire structure with a layer of passive shielding is one of the ways, and it is not possible to exclude the development of very effective materials in this role over time. Theoretically, the ship / station does not have to have windows – technology already allows replacing them with screens transmitting the image from cameras located outside. Such a solution is now seriously considered even by aircraft manufacturers, as it allows to simplify the production of the fuselage and reduce its weight (both of these criteria are also of key importance for the mass production of Starship, announced by SpaceX). There is no doubt that the potential for improvement in the passive shielding category is large and will continue for many years to come.

Unfortunately, this type of protection is far from ideal in its very assumption. Under the influence of continuous “bombardment” with high-energy particles, the shielding properties of any material degenerate over time. The problem becomes more acute the longer the ship stays in interplanetary space. In the future, ships that do not land after leaving the “shipyard” are to be expected never – I am going to present the physical basics of technology that can complement passive shielding on this type of units.

The entry is a continuation of the cycle in which I explain the nature of the phenomenon of cosmic rays and the risks associated with it for manned flights beyond the Earth’s magnetic field. For a more complete understanding of the issues discussed below, I recommend that you read the previous sections first.

We can distinguish three main types of active shielding: electrostatic, electromagnetic (for which you should additionally distinguish limited and unlimited / open fields) and, the closest to sf imaginations due to the visual resemblance to force fields, plasma (requiring the most advanced technology, but within our reach, assuming financing).

These can then be divided into subcategories and discuss technical nuances, but the aim of my articles is to “reduce” complex scientific issues to the most accessible, understandable and at the same time interesting form possible, which, however, will be an increasing challenge when we take into the wallpaper “deconstruction ”Futuristic anti-radiation shields. Therefore, some details will be deliberately omitted, and the existence of certain problems will only be indicated, if the reader wishes to explore them on his own (I provide supplementary literature for subscribers).

This part is devoted exclusively to electrostatic shields – in this way, we will prepare the ground for comparing their advantages and disadvantages with “artificial” magnetic fields and systems based on trapped plasma (part four of this cycle).

Electrostatic shield


The idea seems trivial: the generators placed on the ship maintain an electric charge around the ship that repels the charged particles of cosmic rays. So the method works exactly the opposite of this cat:

If the Filemon in the photo were a spaceship, he could simply change his electric charge and traverse the endless spaces of polystyrene balls completely unscathed. And if the load was strong enough, they would even move out of the way.

Likewise, if the intention of engineers was to, for example, shield astronauts from GCR particles (radiation reaching us from outside the solar system – to learn more, read the previous parts of my cycle on cosmic rays) with energies up to 500 million electron volts (MeV), it would be enough to generate a charge of 500 megavolts potential. Additionally, particles with higher energies would be slowed down before hitting the ship. So in theory it sounds very good and even a little too easy.

In fact, it sounds easy not only in theory, because the mechanism was successfully (even more than expected) tested half a century ago on the Soviet Kosmos 605 satellite:

Note: the image is a hyperlink to download the full .pdf file with the description of the experiment.  The Kosmos 605 satellite, also called Biocosmos 1, launched into orbit, among others  a few dozen live rats and six turtles - this digression ends the participation of unexpected animals in the article.

But, as you can guess, there is a catch – the GCR consists (about 99%) of protons and atomic nuclei (mainly helium), i.e. positively charged particles. Meanwhile, the solar wind also abounds in electrons – although less energetic, there are many more of them than GCR protons.

Surrounding the ship with a strong positive field would make the repulsive “inverted cat effect” work great as a shield against the GCR particles, but at the same time negatively charged electrons would be attracted and additionally accelerated in our field of 500 MV, until the inevitable collision with the fuselage.

It is true that the electron hitting the ship’s hull, unlike heavy atomic nuclei, is not able to penetrate even a thin sheathing (it lacks penetrating force), but nothing is lost in nature – the energy of the electron must be preserved, hence its sudden stopping results in the emission of photon. Under constant bombardment, the fuselage would quickly begin to emit x-rays, which would have the practical effect of “cooking” the crew. So much worse than if there was no “protective” field at all … Naturally, someone could say that the hull emitting X rays is not a tragedy yet, as it can be blocked relatively easily. However, it is not for this that we have equipped the ship with a futuristic active shield, in order to create the need for parallel multi-tonal shielding against X-rays. The more so because before the launch of the shield, the electrons of solar origin did not pose any threat.

Let’s summarize the essence of the problem: an effective electrostatic shield is one that does not attract (giving them higher energies) electrons from the entire vicinity of the ship and at the same time repels the positive ions of cosmic rays, which are not indifferent to the health of astronauts. So is it possible to push particles with plus and minus charges away from the ship at the same time?

Well, it is possible, although here the matter gets a bit more complicated. In order to repel particles with opposite charges, the field must have a “layered”, multipolar structure – the task of the outer “layer” is to clean the immediate vicinity of the ship, surrounding it with a kind of “bubble” without electrons, so that the positive poles located closer to the ship can then deal with protons .

Construction

The simplest configuration that meets the above requirements is the so-called linear quadrupole.

It could be “tuned” to filter most cosmic ray particles on collision trajectories.

This is possible due to the fortunate feature of cosmic rays, namely energetic asymmetry between electrons (low energies) and positively charged GCR particles (very high energies).

Observed from a distance, the ship generates a field with the properties of a negative monopoly – the whole system is also slightly “negative”. It does not allow electrons to the vicinity of the positive pole located in the center (let us emphasize that this field accelerates at the same time, the GCR particles, but only minimally, which does not make a significant difference to their energy, because it is already large “in”).

The Feasibility of Multipole Electrostatic Radiation Shielding [Metzger et al., 2004]

In close-up, however, you can see that the concentrated positive field deflects all protons below a given energy level. As we know from previous entries, attempts to stop or deviate all GCR particles are unrealistic – this is true for both passive and active shielding. Let us remind you that even the magnetic field of the Sun, then the Earth’s magnetic field cannot cope with the most energetic protons, and finally the entire atmosphere (to receive a dose of radiation from the center of the Milky Way, just go for a walk, preferably in the mountains), so some of them will fly through the electrostatic shield as if it wasn’t there. However, this does not change the fact that the “cut-off” of 80% of the protons translates into an approximately 5-fold reduction in radiation doses taken by the crew.

Other concepts of multipolar structure assume that the ship is surrounded by charged spheres (these could literally be inflated) – the higher the potential difference, the greater the distance required to maintain their relative positions.

The figure below shows one of the possible configurations – a central area of ​​40 meters in diameter is protected by 12 spheres with +300 MV and -300 MV charges. The total diameter of the system is 320 meters.

Electrostatic Active Radiation Shielding – Revisited [Wilson et al., 2006]

Importantly, however, particles with energies exceeding the field value will be slowed down by them, making the ship’s passive shielding (as discussed in detail in the second part of the water jacket radiation cycle) more effective.

For example, for the configuration illustrated above (300 MV), a particle with an initial kinetic energy of 6 GeV would hit the ship with an energy of 5.7 GeV (5% difference – of course, percentage the reduction level is the greater, the smaller the difference between the field charge and the energy of the penetrating particle). In this respect, the electrostatic shield may appear as a future-proof complementary solution in large units. We should not consider active systems as alternatives replacing passive shielding, but as the first line of defense that “relieves” the ship’s hull.

(…)

The above text is approximately 50% of the article, fully published on Substack. Continue reading.

The article was created in cooperation with the user TexasBocaChicapublishing their texts on the site Substack. All his entries can be found at this link, feel free to subscribe.

Footnotes

" } ["summary"]=> string(598) "​ Introduction ​ Any science fiction enthusiast will admit that the above dialogue sounds better than if the captain’s phrase was “leave your positions, hide in bathrooms” (which is why I explain to bathrooms in part II). And thus, if the prospect of relocation to the Martian base is to be one day attractive to ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(15022) "

Introduction


Any science fiction enthusiast will admit that the above dialogue sounds better than if the captain’s phrase was “leave your positions, hide in bathrooms” (which is why I explain to bathrooms in part II). And thus, if the prospect of relocation to the Martian base is to be one day attractive to a wide group of high-class specialists (among whom, of course, there is an overrepresentation of geeks), this is – as all serious studies show* – the ships of the future should be as faithful as possible to the ideas of Star Trek enthusiasts about interplanetary travel. Shields in the form of a “force field” are, on the other hand, a characteristic attribute of all futuristic spacecraft.

* there are no such studies

However, do such concepts make practical sense in the context of protecting passengers against radiation? This question can be answered evasively, formulating a non-controversial conclusion that active shields are definitely not necessary.

Initially, manned interplanetary ships will only be equipped with “primitive” shelters (where primitive does not have to mean uncomfortable, as argued and illustrated in detail in the previous entry), shielding astronauts from potentially dangerous particles – in the case of, for example, a mission to Mars, it is a fully sufficient remedy for the problem of radiation.

In the long run, however – although this may theoretically be shortened to e.g. 30-40 years, taking into account the development potential of the sector New Space – i.e. when humanity begins to venture longer and longer journeys, systems that ensure permanent protection not only of all decks of the ship, and even its immediate surroundings (e.g. research instruments located outside, after all, precise electronics are susceptible to “Radiation sickness” like living organisms). Especially since, apart from traveling from A to B, one can imagine orbital base stations where the inhabitants will spend many years (and remember that any possible health repercussions of ionizing radiation are distant in time).

Surrounding the entire structure with a layer of passive shielding is one of the ways, and it is not possible to exclude the development of very effective materials in this role over time. Theoretically, the ship / station does not have to have windows – technology already allows replacing them with screens transmitting the image from cameras located outside. Such a solution is now seriously considered even by aircraft manufacturers, as it allows to simplify the production of the fuselage and reduce its weight (both of these criteria are also of key importance for the mass production of Starship, announced by SpaceX). There is no doubt that the potential for improvement in the passive shielding category is large and will continue for many years to come.

Unfortunately, this type of protection is far from ideal in its very assumption. Under the influence of continuous “bombardment” with high-energy particles, the shielding properties of any material degenerate over time. The problem becomes more acute the longer the ship stays in interplanetary space. In the future, ships that do not land after leaving the “shipyard” are to be expected never – I am going to present the physical basics of technology that can complement passive shielding on this type of units.

The entry is a continuation of the cycle in which I explain the nature of the phenomenon of cosmic rays and the risks associated with it for manned flights beyond the Earth’s magnetic field. For a more complete understanding of the issues discussed below, I recommend that you read the previous sections first.

We can distinguish three main types of active shielding: electrostatic, electromagnetic (for which you should additionally distinguish limited and unlimited / open fields) and, the closest to sf imaginations due to the visual resemblance to force fields, plasma (requiring the most advanced technology, but within our reach, assuming financing).

These can then be divided into subcategories and discuss technical nuances, but the aim of my articles is to “reduce” complex scientific issues to the most accessible, understandable and at the same time interesting form possible, which, however, will be an increasing challenge when we take into the wallpaper “deconstruction ”Futuristic anti-radiation shields. Therefore, some details will be deliberately omitted, and the existence of certain problems will only be indicated, if the reader wishes to explore them on his own (I provide supplementary literature for subscribers).

This part is devoted exclusively to electrostatic shields – in this way, we will prepare the ground for comparing their advantages and disadvantages with “artificial” magnetic fields and systems based on trapped plasma (part four of this cycle).

Electrostatic shield


The idea seems trivial: the generators placed on the ship maintain an electric charge around the ship that repels the charged particles of cosmic rays. So the method works exactly the opposite of this cat:

If the Filemon in the photo were a spaceship, he could simply change his electric charge and traverse the endless spaces of polystyrene balls completely unscathed. And if the load was strong enough, they would even move out of the way.

Likewise, if the intention of engineers was to, for example, shield astronauts from GCR particles (radiation reaching us from outside the solar system – to learn more, read the previous parts of my cycle on cosmic rays) with energies up to 500 million electron volts (MeV), it would be enough to generate a charge of 500 megavolts potential. Additionally, particles with higher energies would be slowed down before hitting the ship. So in theory it sounds very good and even a little too easy.

In fact, it sounds easy not only in theory, because the mechanism was successfully (even more than expected) tested half a century ago on the Soviet Kosmos 605 satellite:

Note: the image is a hyperlink to download the full .pdf file with the description of the experiment.  The Kosmos 605 satellite, also called Biocosmos 1, launched into orbit, among others  a few dozen live rats and six turtles - this digression ends the participation of unexpected animals in the article.

But, as you can guess, there is a catch – the GCR consists (about 99%) of protons and atomic nuclei (mainly helium), i.e. positively charged particles. Meanwhile, the solar wind also abounds in electrons – although less energetic, there are many more of them than GCR protons.

Surrounding the ship with a strong positive field would make the repulsive “inverted cat effect” work great as a shield against the GCR particles, but at the same time negatively charged electrons would be attracted and additionally accelerated in our field of 500 MV, until the inevitable collision with the fuselage.

It is true that the electron hitting the ship’s hull, unlike heavy atomic nuclei, is not able to penetrate even a thin sheathing (it lacks penetrating force), but nothing is lost in nature – the energy of the electron must be preserved, hence its sudden stopping results in the emission of photon. Under constant bombardment, the fuselage would quickly begin to emit x-rays, which would have the practical effect of “cooking” the crew. So much worse than if there was no “protective” field at all … Naturally, someone could say that the hull emitting X rays is not a tragedy yet, as it can be blocked relatively easily. However, it is not for this that we have equipped the ship with a futuristic active shield, in order to create the need for parallel multi-tonal shielding against X-rays. The more so because before the launch of the shield, the electrons of solar origin did not pose any threat.

Let’s summarize the essence of the problem: an effective electrostatic shield is one that does not attract (giving them higher energies) electrons from the entire vicinity of the ship and at the same time repels the positive ions of cosmic rays, which are not indifferent to the health of astronauts. So is it possible to push particles with plus and minus charges away from the ship at the same time?

Well, it is possible, although here the matter gets a bit more complicated. In order to repel particles with opposite charges, the field must have a “layered”, multipolar structure – the task of the outer “layer” is to clean the immediate vicinity of the ship, surrounding it with a kind of “bubble” without electrons, so that the positive poles located closer to the ship can then deal with protons .

Construction

The simplest configuration that meets the above requirements is the so-called linear quadrupole.

It could be “tuned” to filter most cosmic ray particles on collision trajectories.

This is possible due to the fortunate feature of cosmic rays, namely energetic asymmetry between electrons (low energies) and positively charged GCR particles (very high energies).

Observed from a distance, the ship generates a field with the properties of a negative monopoly – the whole system is also slightly “negative”. It does not allow electrons to the vicinity of the positive pole located in the center (let us emphasize that this field accelerates at the same time, the GCR particles, but only minimally, which does not make a significant difference to their energy, because it is already large “in”).

The Feasibility of Multipole Electrostatic Radiation Shielding [Metzger et al., 2004]

In close-up, however, you can see that the concentrated positive field deflects all protons below a given energy level. As we know from previous entries, attempts to stop or deviate all GCR particles are unrealistic – this is true for both passive and active shielding. Let us remind you that even the magnetic field of the Sun, then the Earth’s magnetic field cannot cope with the most energetic protons, and finally the entire atmosphere (to receive a dose of radiation from the center of the Milky Way, just go for a walk, preferably in the mountains), so some of them will fly through the electrostatic shield as if it wasn’t there. However, this does not change the fact that the “cut-off” of 80% of the protons translates into an approximately 5-fold reduction in radiation doses taken by the crew.

Other concepts of multipolar structure assume that the ship is surrounded by charged spheres (these could literally be inflated) – the higher the potential difference, the greater the distance required to maintain their relative positions.

The figure below shows one of the possible configurations – a central area of ​​40 meters in diameter is protected by 12 spheres with +300 MV and -300 MV charges. The total diameter of the system is 320 meters.

Electrostatic Active Radiation Shielding – Revisited [Wilson et al., 2006]

Importantly, however, particles with energies exceeding the field value will be slowed down by them, making the ship’s passive shielding (as discussed in detail in the second part of the water jacket radiation cycle) more effective.

For example, for the configuration illustrated above (300 MV), a particle with an initial kinetic energy of 6 GeV would hit the ship with an energy of 5.7 GeV (5% difference – of course, percentage the reduction level is the greater, the smaller the difference between the field charge and the energy of the penetrating particle). In this respect, the electrostatic shield may appear as a future-proof complementary solution in large units. We should not consider active systems as alternatives replacing passive shielding, but as the first line of defense that “relieves” the ship’s hull.

(…)

The above text is approximately 50% of the article, fully published on Substack. Continue reading.

The article was created in cooperation with the user TexasBocaChicapublishing their texts on the site Substack. All his entries can be found at this link, feel free to subscribe.

Footnotes

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1644169056) } [8]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(50) "Astronomers Keep Finding Stars That Should Be Dead" ["link"]=> string(76) "https://movs.world/space/astronomers-keep-finding-stars-that-should-be-dead/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Sun, 06 Feb 2022 06:36:31 +0000" ["category"]=> string(32) "SpaceAstronomersdeadfindingstars" ["guid"]=> string(76) "https://movs.world/space/astronomers-keep-finding-stars-that-should-be-dead/" ["description"]=> string(558) "The most massive stars in the universe are also the shortest-lived. The more massive a star is, the faster it burns up its fuel reserves, resulting in a lifespan of less than about 10 million years. This fascinating fact leads us to a puzzle. Most of these stars are found relatively close to the regions ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(6362) "

The most massive stars in the universe are also the shortest-lived. The more massive a star is, the faster it burns up its fuel reserves, resulting in a lifespan of less than about 10 million years.

This fascinating fact leads us to a puzzle. Most of these stars are found relatively close to the regions where they were born. But several of them have been found lurking in strange pockets of the Milky Way, far from the galactic disk where star formation takes place; in other words, their birthplaces.

So far, in fact, the travel time it would take to get there far exceeds the lifespan of several of the stars.

“Astronomers are finding massive stars far from their place of origin, so far away, in fact, that it takes longer than the star’s lifetime to get there,” said astronomer Douglas Gies of Georgia State University. “How this could happen is a topic of active debate among scientists.”

But astronomers may now have found an explanation for this, thanks to new research.

The focus of the study was a star called HD 93521. This is an O-type star, the most massive category of stars on the main sequence. HD 93521 is also about 3,600 light-years from the galactic disk, situated in a sparsely populated region called the galactic halo. That’s quite a distance, so Gies and his colleagues wanted to find out if there was a reasonable way for this star to get there.

They used data from the European Space Agency’s Gaia satellite. This is an ongoing project to map the Milky Way as accurately as possible, in three dimensions and including data on the motions and speeds of the stars. They also carefully analyzed the spectrum of light the star is emitting, to help determine its mass, age and rotation.

The Gaia data revealed that the star HD 93521 is about 4,064 light-years from Earth and the aforementioned 3,600 light-years from the galactic disk.

The team also calculated that the star is about 17 times the mass of the Sun, with an average temperature of approximately 30,000 Kelvin. At that mass and temperature, the star must be about 5 million years old, with a margin of error of about 2 million years. Its maximum lifespan is approximately 8.3 million years.

Migrating from its birthplace in the galactic disk to its current position, however, would take a journey of approximately 39 million years.

This is a big mystery for astronomers to solve, but the star itself could be the key to the mystery. Our Sun’s rate of rotation is just under 2 kilometers (1.24 miles) per second. HD 93521 spins at an absolute breakneck speed of 435 kilometers (270 miles) per second.

There are several mechanisms that can increase the rotation speed of a star. One of the biggest effects would be through a stellar merger, which would combine not only the spins of the two stars, but also the angular momentum of their orbit.

This is what the team thinks happened to HD 93521. It began its life as a binary system consisting of two medium-mass stars, which merged to form the star we see today in the relatively recent past.

These medium-mass stars would have a lifespan long enough to survive the journey into the galactic halo, the researchers said.

They even found a binary system that could validate their discovery. Another star system IT Librae is a binary system consisting of two B-type stars (one step smaller than O-type stars), one of which is more massive than the other.

This larger star also appears to be too short-lived for the travel time it would take to reach its current position. But in a paper, a team of researchers explains that the two stars are in a close binary system, and the smaller one has already started transferring mass to the larger one.

This means that the larger star’s current mass is misleading; since it started smaller, its lifespan is probably longer than it currently appears.

“All the observed properties of the star HD 93521 appear to be in line with expectations of a fusion product. The star appears to be very young compared to its time of flight from the galactic disk because it was rejuvenated through stellar fusion of the binary components,” the researchers wrote.

“Investigations of such systems will provide important clues about the properties of post-mass transfer and fusion systems that are critical to understanding supernova generation.”

Source:

https://www.sciencealert.com/this-ingeniously-simple-solution-may-solve-a-perplexing-mystery-with-massive-stars

https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.3847/1538-3881/ac43be/pdf

" } ["summary"]=> string(558) "The most massive stars in the universe are also the shortest-lived. The more massive a star is, the faster it burns up its fuel reserves, resulting in a lifespan of less than about 10 million years. This fascinating fact leads us to a puzzle. Most of these stars are found relatively close to the regions ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(6362) "

The most massive stars in the universe are also the shortest-lived. The more massive a star is, the faster it burns up its fuel reserves, resulting in a lifespan of less than about 10 million years.

This fascinating fact leads us to a puzzle. Most of these stars are found relatively close to the regions where they were born. But several of them have been found lurking in strange pockets of the Milky Way, far from the galactic disk where star formation takes place; in other words, their birthplaces.

So far, in fact, the travel time it would take to get there far exceeds the lifespan of several of the stars.

“Astronomers are finding massive stars far from their place of origin, so far away, in fact, that it takes longer than the star’s lifetime to get there,” said astronomer Douglas Gies of Georgia State University. “How this could happen is a topic of active debate among scientists.”

But astronomers may now have found an explanation for this, thanks to new research.

The focus of the study was a star called HD 93521. This is an O-type star, the most massive category of stars on the main sequence. HD 93521 is also about 3,600 light-years from the galactic disk, situated in a sparsely populated region called the galactic halo. That’s quite a distance, so Gies and his colleagues wanted to find out if there was a reasonable way for this star to get there.

They used data from the European Space Agency’s Gaia satellite. This is an ongoing project to map the Milky Way as accurately as possible, in three dimensions and including data on the motions and speeds of the stars. They also carefully analyzed the spectrum of light the star is emitting, to help determine its mass, age and rotation.

The Gaia data revealed that the star HD 93521 is about 4,064 light-years from Earth and the aforementioned 3,600 light-years from the galactic disk.

The team also calculated that the star is about 17 times the mass of the Sun, with an average temperature of approximately 30,000 Kelvin. At that mass and temperature, the star must be about 5 million years old, with a margin of error of about 2 million years. Its maximum lifespan is approximately 8.3 million years.

Migrating from its birthplace in the galactic disk to its current position, however, would take a journey of approximately 39 million years.

This is a big mystery for astronomers to solve, but the star itself could be the key to the mystery. Our Sun’s rate of rotation is just under 2 kilometers (1.24 miles) per second. HD 93521 spins at an absolute breakneck speed of 435 kilometers (270 miles) per second.

There are several mechanisms that can increase the rotation speed of a star. One of the biggest effects would be through a stellar merger, which would combine not only the spins of the two stars, but also the angular momentum of their orbit.

This is what the team thinks happened to HD 93521. It began its life as a binary system consisting of two medium-mass stars, which merged to form the star we see today in the relatively recent past.

These medium-mass stars would have a lifespan long enough to survive the journey into the galactic halo, the researchers said.

They even found a binary system that could validate their discovery. Another star system IT Librae is a binary system consisting of two B-type stars (one step smaller than O-type stars), one of which is more massive than the other.

This larger star also appears to be too short-lived for the travel time it would take to reach its current position. But in a paper, a team of researchers explains that the two stars are in a close binary system, and the smaller one has already started transferring mass to the larger one.

This means that the larger star’s current mass is misleading; since it started smaller, its lifespan is probably longer than it currently appears.

“All the observed properties of the star HD 93521 appear to be in line with expectations of a fusion product. The star appears to be very young compared to its time of flight from the galactic disk because it was rejuvenated through stellar fusion of the binary components,” the researchers wrote.

“Investigations of such systems will provide important clues about the properties of post-mass transfer and fusion systems that are critical to understanding supernova generation.”

Source:

https://www.sciencealert.com/this-ingeniously-simple-solution-may-solve-a-perplexing-mystery-with-massive-stars

https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.3847/1538-3881/ac43be/pdf

" ["date_timestamp"]=> int(1644129391) } [9]=> array(11) { ["title"]=> string(91) "Launch with the satellite of the COSMO-SkyMed constellation has been completed successfully" ["link"]=> string(117) "https://movs.world/space/launch-with-the-satellite-of-the-cosmo-skymed-constellation-has-been-completed-successfully/" ["dc"]=> array(1) { ["creator"]=> string(11) "Susan Hally" } ["pubdate"]=> string(31) "Tue, 01 Feb 2022 16:25:30 +0000" ["category"]=> string(65) "SpacecompletedconstellationCOSMOSkyMedlaunchsatelliteSuccessfully" ["guid"]=> string(117) "https://movs.world/space/launch-with-the-satellite-of-the-cosmo-skymed-constellation-has-been-completed-successfully/" ["description"]=> string(732) "Launch with the satellite of the COSMO-SkyMed constellation has been completed successfully Tuesday, February 1, 2022 3:36 PM (edit) The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX) The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX) On February 1 at ... Read more" ["content"]=> array(1) { ["encoded"]=> string(4950) "

Launch with the satellite of the COSMO-SkyMed constellation has been completed successfully

Tuesday, February 1, 2022 3:36 PM

(edit)

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX)

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX)

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX)

On February 1 at 00:11 Polish time (January 31, 23:11 UTC), the Falcon 9 rocket took off from the SLC-40 platform on Cape Canaveral, Florida and launched the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 (CSG-2) satellite into heliosynchronous orbit for Italian Space Agency (ASI). Charge separation occurred approximately 60 minutes after take-off.

Initially, the take-off was supposed to take place four days earlier, but it was postponed three times due to unfavorable weather, while on the fourth attempt the ship found itself in the forbidden zone and the take-off was also postponed.

COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 is the second satellite belonging to the second generation of the COSMO-SkyMed constellation (CSG – COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation), which is to enable observation of the Earth regardless of weather and lighting conditions. You can read more about the mission and payload in the pre-launch article.

During this flight, the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket was used, which previously participated in two missions as a side booster for the Falcon Heavy rocket: Arabsat-6A in April 2019 and STP-2 in June 2019. It was the first ever start of Falcon 9, during which the first stage was used, which was previously a Falcon Heavy side booster. After the second stage had separated, the booster landed on the platform Landing Zone 1 on Cape Canaveral. This is the first ever booster to land on land three times.

The cargo covers used in this mission have also been used previously. One of them took part in the Transporter-1, Transporter-2 missions and one Starlink mission, the other one in the SAOCOM 1B, Transporter-2 missions and one Starlink mission. It was planned to recover them once again after launching on the surface of the Atlantic Ocean with a ship Bob. So far it is not known whether the covers in good condition have been recovered.

The full boot clip can be viewed below.

" } ["summary"]=> string(732) "Launch with the satellite of the COSMO-SkyMed constellation has been completed successfully Tuesday, February 1, 2022 3:36 PM (edit) The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX) The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX) On February 1 at ... Read more" ["atom_content"]=> string(4950) "

Launch with the satellite of the COSMO-SkyMed constellation has been completed successfully

Tuesday, February 1, 2022 3:36 PM

(edit)

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX)

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX)

The launch of the Falcon 9 rocket with the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 mission (Source: SpaceX)

On February 1 at 00:11 Polish time (January 31, 23:11 UTC), the Falcon 9 rocket took off from the SLC-40 platform on Cape Canaveral, Florida and launched the COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 (CSG-2) satellite into heliosynchronous orbit for Italian Space Agency (ASI). Charge separation occurred approximately 60 minutes after take-off.

Initially, the take-off was supposed to take place four days earlier, but it was postponed three times due to unfavorable weather, while on the fourth attempt the ship found itself in the forbidden zone and the take-off was also postponed.

COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation FM2 is the second satellite belonging to the second generation of the COSMO-SkyMed constellation (CSG – COSMO-SkyMed Second Generation), which is to enable observation of the Earth regardless of weather and lighting conditions. You can read more about the mission and payload in the pre-launch article.

During this flight, the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket was used, which previously participated in two missions as a side booster for the Falcon Heavy rocket: Arabsat-6A in April 2019 and STP-2 in June 2019. It was the first ever start of Falcon 9, during which the first stage was used, which was previously a Falcon Heavy side booster. After the second stage had separated, the booster landed on the platform Landing Zone 1 on Cape Canaveral. This is the first ever booster to land on land three times.

The cargo covers used in this mission have also been used previously. One of them took part in the Transporter-1, Transporter-2 missions and one Starlink mission, the other one in the SAOCOM 1B, Transporter-2 missions and one Starlink mission. It was planned to recover them once again after launching on the surface of the Atlantic Ocean with a ship Bob. So far it is not known whether the covers in good condition have been recovered.

The full boot clip can be viewed below.

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