Looks like there will be LEGO mini figs on the next NASA mission to Jupiter! Full scale minifig replicas rendered out of aluminum will be bolted to the Juno probe bound to the largest of the gas planets in our solar system. So for the next five years a tiny god Jupiter, his sister Juno, and the astronomer Galileo will be hanging out on a one way trip to promote children’s education in the area of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.
VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. – The U.S. Air Force’s first
unmanned re-entry spacecraft landed at Vandenberg Air Force Base at
1:16 a.m. PST today.
The X-37B, named Orbital Test Vehicle 1 (OTV-1), conducted on-orbit
experiments for more than 220 days during its maiden voyage. It fired
its orbital maneuver engine in low-earth orbit to perform an
autonomous reentry before landing.
The X-37B is the newest and most advanced re-entry spacecraft. Managed
by the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office (AFRCO), the X-37B program
performs risk reduction, experimentation and concept of operations
development for reusable space vehicle technologies.
“Today’s landing culminates a successful mission based on close
teamwork between the 30th Space Wing, Boeing and the Air Force Rapid
Capabilities Office,” said Lt Col Troy Giese, X-37B program manager
from the AFRCO. “We are very pleased that the program completed all
the on-orbit objectives for the first mission.”
OTV-1’s de-orbit and landing mark the transition from the on-orbit
demonstration phase to a refurbishment phase for the program.
The Air Force is preparing to launch the next X-37B, OTV-2, in Spring
2011 aboard an Atlas V booster.
I wonder if the X-37B has enough delta V to make it to the ISS? If it did then there might be hope for more re-supply missions that don’t rely on the Russian Progress launches.
Yarr… The idea of placing a file server in orbit around Earth sounds cool but the practicality of it verges on the crazy insane. Anyway, a server that is on orbit my be exempt from international law but the ground stations that serve it are not. I suppose you could put a satellite up/down link on someplace like Sealand and worry about feeding data to and from that. It’s still not going to solve the problem of hosting data that countries don’t want being hosted.
This week, Pirate Parties worldwide started brainstorming about a similarly ambitious plan. Instead of founding their own nation, they want to shoot a torrent site into orbit.
Soon a group of volunteers from Denmark will be pushing the boundaries for human endeavor. Well, humans that live in Denmark and are not affiliated with a major aerospace concern. These adventitious will be launching a test rocket as part of their attempt to put a man into space. The launch is to occur in the Baltic Sea on August 31th and is all goes well will reach 150,000 feet.
from their website: “This is a non-profit suborbital space endeavor, based entirely on sponsors and volunteers.
Our mission is to launch a human being into space. We are working fulltime to develop a series of suborbital space vehicles – designed to pave the way for manned space flight on a micro size spacecraft. Two rocket vehicles are under development. A small unmanned sounding rocket, named Hybrid Atmospheric Test Vehicle or HATV and a larger booster rocket named Hybrid Exo Atmospheric Transporter or HEAT, designed to carry a micro spacecraft into a suborbital trajectory in space.”
I hope all goes well for them. If they are successful they will be the first organization to enter the manned spaceflight game entirely without government donations.
I absolutely love stumbling across these gems. The classic sfi-fi shows and movies like Space:1999, UFO, and Moon Two Zero have such a distinctive look to them that even if the story was a bit crap you were still in for a visual treat. It’s kind of sad that now a days whenever you see a spaceship in a movie it’s inevitably gray or white. It’s rare to see anything with color out there, not so with the classics! Anyway, have a look at this beautiful collection of artifacts that Sission has collected and restored and in some cases he’s built accurate replicas of the originals.
“Hello and welcome to my Sci-Fi model website. Here I will be displaying some original film studio props and many of the model replicas that I have constructed over the last 25 years. This will mostly be from the works of Gerry Anderson, who’s world famous television shows have entertained me for a very large part of my life. Thanks mostly to the talents of such artists as Derek Meddings, Mike Trim, Brian Johnson, Steve Begg, Keith Wilson, Reg Hill and many, many others.
Just click on the highlighted text to navigate and I hope you enjoy your visit”