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Everything posted by cubinator

  1. Now we know we won't need to know the Mach number in the next 45 minutes.
  2. I think Phobos will be systematically moved away from or into Mars, or disassembled by human descendants long before its natural demise. I'm also reading some talk that this ring-moon business might be cyclical.
  3. I went to a local astronomy event and saw the eclipse, a Starlink train, ISS, an occultation of a star, the Hercules cluster, the Sombrero, Pinwheel, and Whirlpool galaxies, and a bunch of constellations.
  4. Moon will be two days from periapsis, so extra big in the sky!
  5. I say "catalyzed" because I'm aware it's not a total upheaval, nor is it a complete reason for any future society being the way it is. It's an experience that moves things slightly in another direction for the future, even in the case you've observed of people working from home more. That and other pandemic-related experiences will be an influence on decisions people make from now on.
  6. That looked like a pretty short entry burn. Maybe I just zoned out.
  7. I think the pandemic has catalyzed a bit of a societal shift. I think maybe the thing to come first might be a change in the way we conduct ourselves, before any particular object.
  8. Today I was happy to be able to show TWO pictures of black holes in the planetarium.
  9. If you've got significant amounts of oil and metal shavings in a LOx system, though, you've done something wrong. Though maybe we're talking about different kinds of engines.
  10. Once you let it cool down, yes.
  11. I'm curious where they think the orientation of the accretion disk is in relation to the galactic plane. It looks like we're looking closer to the edge than M87 (I certainly hope so, since I wouldn't want to be flying into the poles of a black hole at the wrong time!)
  12. That motion looks a lot tighter than the Shuttle ones.
  13. Looks like a cetacean coming up for air and checking out the silly humans.
  14. I think straight up is a considerably better direction than horizontal through the atmosphere. The motion is what gets you.
  15. The difference is you're actually giving them the space to construct a meaningful answer!
  16. The introductory questions that usually get asked have very long answers requiring background and explanation. We should try to choose more specific and narrow questions.
  17. Hard to say if they still have it.
  18. Insect communities can evolve immunity to pesticides, and the development of insect-killers is a big area of study. A big issue is making something that kills them, but doesn't ALSO work on us.
  19. Why do we still use 'therefore' but not 'wherefore'?
  20. Epic! I was wondering if they'd approach any of the disposed pieces, but somehow it never occurred to me that they would be perfect targets for the helicopter!
  21. Being more afraid of dust than hypergols is a priority that needs readjustment, I think...
  22. When you sometimes only have a few days to live your adult life, there's not a lot of time to fool around with having to learn how to do things.
  23. Insect nervous systems are very specialized, they have a lot of circuitry that's more hard-wired than ours. Many flies, for instance, have neurons that are fused together for faster obstacle avoidance in flight where other animals would usually have a gap between the cells. The circuitry to control the flight muscles is located in the thoracic ganglia, dense nerve clusters in the same part of the body as the wings. Commands to activate or deactivate them come from the brain (where large lobes are also responsible for image processing), but the action itself is extremely structured.
  24. I have an idea as to why this might be. Bees can use all four wings for flight, while flies are of the order Diptera, whose hindwings are only small nubs on the ends of stalks. Flies use only their forewings to fly, while the hindwings are used for stabilization by spinning. If a fly were to try flying in absence of gravity, they might just start spinning around. Insect wings are pretty sturdy, have you ever tried to eat one? They're like a tough, dry leaf, like a bay leaf.
  25. Ah, that could be. I never saw the booster start moving up, but it was very close to stationary from the droneship.
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