Tag Archives: Apollo

Second time is the charm

SpaceX successfully launches CRS-10 from LC-39A | Falcon 9 first stage lands at LZ-1 

Kennedy Space Center and Cape Canaveral Airforce Station

 

Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A, the southern most of the two most northerly pads) with SpaceX modifications 


 


Landing Zone 1 (LZ-1 formerly LC-13 midway down ICBM road )


LC-39A launch

 

Aerial view of LZ-1 landing

 

Full coverage with some SpaceX provided historical clips

 
Links

Aerial snapshots from Apple Maps (TOMTOM)

Welcome to the Future – the revolution will be Tweeted 



Apollo Retroreflectors

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http://www.xkcd.com/1441

Yet more proof that man really did walk on the moon.

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Left on the moon by Apollo missions 11, 14, and 15 the three retroreflectors continue to provide an ultra-precise means of determining Earth-Moon distance.

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lunar_Laser_Ranging_experiment

Retroreflectors provide surveyors a precise way of measuring point-to-point distance by timing the two-way time of a laser pulse. The optical design is such that reflected light is returned in the exact direction from which it was sent with very little scatter.

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These methods are faster, safer, and infinitely more accurate than measuring distance by stretching a long steel tape (called a chain for historical reasons) as I did in college surveying camp over 30 years ago. Laser range finders and retroreflectors are the mainstay of modern surveying. This technology did not become commercially available until the 1980s, yet NASA used it in 70s to accurately measure Earth-Moon distance.

With the right equipment anyone can measure the precise distance to the Moon and simultaneously confirm that MEN FROM THE PLANET EARTH
FIRST SET FOOT UPON THE MOON
JULY 1969 A.D.

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Bras in Space

The creation of the Apollo AL7 Pressure Garment is one of the great American stories of the past forty-plus years. […] NASA turned the creation of the spacesuit into a competition (largely dominated by military contractors)—and it was assumed a military contractor would win the day.

Instead, pitted against the military-industrial complex, Playtex created the 21-layer spacesuit, each layer distinct yet interrelated in function to the rest of the whole—a masterly combination of elegance, complexity, and form. […] Traditional engineering firms could not figure out how to meet all the mission requirements and create a functioning suit that would keep the Apollo astronauts alive. The seamstresses at Playtex, with their years of experience fashioning girdles and bras, could, and did.

It was the same materials. It was bras in space. It was literally the same materials that were used in the bra-making process. The straps from bras were reused to hold the thing into shape and the Nylon fabric that a bra-cup is made of was used to give strength to the Latex so that it didn’t expand under air pressure. Then the Latex itself was the same, as they say it started out as exactly the same Latex as went into the girdles […]

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