36 fixed focus cell phone cameras and a peak sensing accelerometer make for a novel way of taking a 360 degree panoramic image.
“We used the camera to capture full spherical panoramas at scenic spots, in a crowded city square and in the middle of a group of people taking turns in throwing the camera. Above all we found that it is a very enjoyable, playful way to take pictures.”
Another amazing science kit from Gakken! This time it features artist Theo Jansen, a world renowned kinetic sculptor that hopes to one day let his creations roam free on the wind swept beaches of the Netherlands. This kit looks amazing, not too unusual for a Gakken kit, and pretty easy to assemble. Like all of the projects in this Mook series, the instructions will be all in Japanese but drawn so well that you don’t need to read any of the text to understand it. The project takes you through building a beautiful wind powered walking creature that is as graceful as it is complex. I can’t wait to get my hands on one of these!
[via MAKE Flickr pool] cloud9science @Wiki – テオ・ヤンセンのミニ・ビーストを作ってみた
I have a pool of photos on Flickr that contains images of some kits and photos taken by some of the cameras that have been featured in the series. Have a look and if you have been graced by owning one of these inspiring products consider contributing a picture or two to the pool.
I’ve long been a fan of the HDR image. Shooting full motion video has never seemed to be an option until now:
Anyone who regularly uses a video camera will know that the devices do not see the world the way we do. The human visual system can perceive a scene that contains both bright highlights and dark shadows, yet is able to process that information in such a way that it can simultaneously expose for both lighting extremes – up to a point, at least. Video cameras, however, have just one f-stop to work with at any one time, and so must make compromises. Now, however, researchers from the UK’s University of Warwick claim to have the solution to such problems, in the form of the world’s first full High Dynamic Range (HDR) video system.
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.
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.
Landing on Mars in May of 2008, the NASA Mars Phoenix Lander worked remarkably well until November of the same year. It sent back hundreds of images and did soil testing that found calcium carbonate and perchlorate. The mission was only supposed to last for three months but like other NASA missions the service life of the lander exceeded expectations and only ended when the winter sun could no longer charge the probes batteries. When the Martian winter had passe it was hoped that the lander might have survived the deadly cold (-87C) and contact could once again be established. However it was not to be. The lander was no longer responding to commands issued from NASA’s Mars Odyssey orbiter as it did a number of passes over the landing site in multiple listening campaigns. Eventually an image was obtained from the HiRISE camera on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter the that confirmed the speculation that an estimated 100 pounds of icy buildup has damaged the delicate solar panels. Phoenix Mars Lander is Silent, New Image Shows Damage.