Category Archives: Astronomy News

China Launches Their initial Robotic space platform Resupply Ship

Earlier these days, China took a large discovery in their seek a continuing human presence in space: they launched Tianzhou-1, associate degree pilotless resupply ship which will dock with their space platform, Tiangong-2. I’d additionally wish to add that I foreseen this might happen back in 2012, after I claimed that their initial space platform, Tiangong-1, was really a image of a resupply ship. i believe i used to be right!

If you’ll forgive Maine, I simply wish to experience this sadly rare moment of accuracy with this quote from my 2012 article regarding Tiangong-1:

So, in an exceedingly shell, here’s what the Chinese square measure doing: they’ve outfitted what is going to become a future ship with a life web and provides, allowing their Shenzou crew to practice orbital docking, some limited space station living, test life support and propulsion systems for both future space stations and on their future station-supporting cargo ship all in one efficient mission. When they build Tiangong 2, they’ll already have some experience and a resupply ship. It’s pretty clever.

Holy crap, that’s pretty much exactly how things have turned out: Tianzhou-1 (the name means ‘heavenly vessel,’ like the free water bottle you’ll get when you enter the afterlife) is based directly on the original Tiangong-1 ‘space station,’ and it’s now being used to resupply Tiangong-2. I’m sure plenty of other observers figured this as well, but just let me have this tiny victory, please.

Really, though, what I think doesn’t matter a bit. What’s important here is that an automatic-docking resupply ship is absolutely crucial to long-term habitation in space. The Tianzhou series is basically filling the same role as the Soviet/Russian Progress resupply ships, which have been in continuous use since they resupplied the Salyut 6 space station in 1978, and still bring load and fuel to the ISS to the present day.

Tianzhou-1 relies on China’s crewed artificial satellite, Shenzhou, that is successively effectively a progressive and enlarged Soviet/Russian Soyuz style. There’s a service module providing propulsion, fuel, and electricity via star panels, and a cylindrical load module, that incorporates a controlled section and might have associate degree unpressurized section also, typically with fuel tanks to refuel the orbiting station.

This mission can largely specialise in having Tianzhou-1 dock, transfer fuel, and undock from Tiangong-2, multiple times. the most goals of the mission are to check the automated arrival and supplying procedures.


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This weekend is that the best time to look at the Lyrid atmospheric phenomenon

For quite a pair of,600 years, humans have discovered meteors streak across our skies each Apr. This year’s Lyrid atmospheric phenomenon, that lasts from Apr sixteen to Apr twenty five, is predicted to be higher than usual. To fancy the celestial spectacle, here’s what you wish to grasp.

What area unit the Lyrids?

The Lyrids area unit the name for the atmospheric phenomenon caused by particles left behind by extraterrestrial object Thatcher. These particles assign as they are available in-tuned with the Earth’s atmosphere, deed a streak that appears sort of a light. The comet’s orbit round the sun is 415 years long. Its last visit was in 1861 and also the next one are going to be in 2276.

They are known as the Lyrids, as a result of they appear to be situated in constellation constellation close to the star Vega.

When am i able to see the Lyrids?

The meteor showers have begun and can last till Apr twenty five. the height of the shower, at a rate of around ten to twenty meteors per hour, are often seen simply before before dawn on Apr twenty two. This year, the waning crescent moon shouldn’t cause a lot of of a tangle if you’re ready to notice a light-pollution free patch of the sky.

The best Lyrids ever discovered had a rate of one hundred meteors per hour and are discovered within the North American country in 1982, Japan in 1945, and Greece in 1922.



Are Genetically changed Astronauts Key To Colonizing Mars?

The future of spacefaring is not any longer restricted to independent agency, personal voters like Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos area unit exploring spacefaring additionally.

With additional folks engaged on advancing the technology of spacefaring it’s not a lot of of a surprise that recombinant DNA technology would be thought of, particularly with plans for extended missions just like the mission to Mars.

Read: Blue Origin Rocket: Jeff Bezos Says No toilet Breaks Allowed On Flights To area

NASA is designing on causation humans to Mars someday within the next twenty to thirty years, a concept that’s already current. The mission is about to be a unidirectional trip, however what data independent agency gathers from the trip might facilitate researchers find out how to higher prepare humans for future visits.

A member of the department of Physiology and physics at Cornell, patron saint Mason, is making a concept for human spacefaring, consistent with MIT Technology Review. Mason incorporates a 500-year set up for the colonisation of Mars that features recombinant DNA technology to change humans to higher go on Mars. however Mason remains making an attempt to work out that components of DNA are often altered and that shouldn’t be touched.

NASA has solely ventured into this kind of analysis in learning twins, one here on Earth and one in area. The analysis is about to be discharged later in 2017 and can detail the variations independent agency discovers between the genetically identical men exposed to totally different environments for a full year. independent agency calls the analysis “a stepping stone towards long length area exploration like journeys to Mars.”


NASA’s Journey To Mars: initial 2 SLS And Orion Missions Face Technical, Budget Challenges, Audit Report Warns

NASA’s formidable Journey to Mars is facing “multiple price and technical challenges,” the house agency’s workplace of officer (OIG) warned in a very new audit report. Moreover, the report conjointly raised doubts over the practicability of NASA’s plans to send crewed mission to Mars within the 2030s or early 2040s, business for a additional elaborated operational arrange on the far side 2021’s Exploration Mission-2 (EM-2).

“If the Agency is to achieve its goal of causation humans to the locality of Mars within the 2030s, important development work on key systems like a region environs, in-space transportation, and Mars landing and ascent vehicles should be undertaken within the 2020s, and therefore the Agency can ought to build these and lots of different selections within the next five years more or less for that to happen,” the Office of Inspector General wrote in its report, printed Thursday. “In addition, to position itself to form wise investment selections, National Aeronautics and Space Administration can ought to begin developing additional elaborated price estimates for its Mars exploration program once EM-2.”

NASA’s planned missions to the terrestrial planet rest on 2 legs — the house Launch System (SLS) rocket, that could be a successor to the agency’s now-defunct spacecraft program, and therefore the Orion deep-space capsule. beneath the house agency’s current plans, the primary uncrewed integrated flight of Orion and SLS — Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1) — is slated to require place no later than November 2018, and therefore the initial crewed launch would follow in 2021.


Astronomers simply Detected an enormous Cold Spot on Jupiter

Using the terribly massive Telescope array, a global team of astronomers has discovered a antecedently undetected  cold spot on Jupiter. mensuration eight,700 miles wide and seven,500 miles across, the mysterious spot is greater than the planet itself. Intriguingly, the weather anomaly is probably going being generated by Jupiter’s spectacular aurora borealis.

New analysis light-emitting diode by University of Leicester astronomers and printed in geology analysis Letters shows that Jovian we have a tendency toather is even a lot of advanced than we thought, and includes a localized dark spot close to Jupiter’s North Pole that’s in all probability being generated by the gas giant’s polar aurorae. The anomaly was solely detected recently, however by analyzing archived atmospherical information, the astronomers were ready to show that it’s been gift within the higher atmosphere for the past fifteen years. It’s doubtless quite ancient—a feature as recent because the gas giant’s aurorae itself. The spot’s form changes dramatically over the course of days to weeks, however as a planetary weather feature, it’s persistent.

Despite Jupiter’s location within the outer scheme, the Jovian planet is capable of generating lots of warmth. In its high-altitude layer, temperatures will vary between 700 degrees Kelvin (426 degrees Celsius) and one,000 degrees Kelvin (726 degrees Celsius). however at the newly-discovered nice Cold Spot, temperatures area unit regarding two hundred degrees Kelvin cooler than the encompassing atmosphere (73 degrees Anders Celsius, or a hundred degrees F).

The astronomers, light-emitting diode by Tom Stallard, Associate in Nursing professor in planetary physical science at the University of Leicester within the uk, detected this feature by analyzing recent observations created by the ESO-VLT telescope and its progressive CRIRES instrument. This offered Associate in Nursing unexampled level of detail once analyzing Jupiter’s sub-auroral atmosphere. the invention of a comprehensible dip within the light-weight output of ions within the planet’s northern regions may are came about as weird anomaly, however Stallard’s team set to research additional. It wasn’t till the researchers went back and added  up several individual observations remodeled the past fifteen years that the nice Cold Spot appeared within the information as a standardized feature.

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