Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?
Polls on the front page of Slashdot? Is the world coming to an end?! Nope; read more about it. ×

+ - Soyuz Breaks Speed Record to ISS->

Submitted by Zothecula
Zothecula writes: A manned Soyuz spacecraft set a record for traveling to the International Space Station (ISS), arriving six hours after launch instead of the usual two days. Soyuz 34 lifted off from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Friday, March 28 at 4:43 p.m. EDT (08:43 GMT) and docked with the ISS at 10: 28 PM EDT (03:28 GMT). It was able to catch up and match trajectories with the ISS in only four orbits using new techniques previously tested in ISS rendezvouses with Russian unmanned Progress cargo ships.
Link to Original Source

Comment: yet another conversion error (Score 3, Informative) 198

by sidyan (#37143546) Attached to: Chinese Researchers Propose Asteroid Deflection Mission

Juno's mass is listed as 3625kg, or almost 8000 pounds, not almost 8 metric tons.

As for the energy obtained from "falling several hundred million miles": that would be exactly the same energy it took to get that far "up" in the first place (not saying that there's no energy to steal from Jupiter, but it's a pretty hair-brained plan, imho, not in the least because such a trajectory would probably take the better part of a decade to complete).

Comment: Re:makes sense (Score 1) 215

by sidyan (#36656314) Attached to: Japanese Team Finds New Source of Rare Earth Elements

Last time I checked, the Pacific was shrinking; You might be confusing it with the Atlantic and its mid-oceanic ridge.

Of course, over a sufficient timespan, your argument might hold water (or rare earth elements); Then again, with enough time it'd apply to every centimeter of the Earth's surface.

Comment: Re:SImpler; just what sailboats do (Score 1) 315

by sidyan (#34151548) Attached to: Going Faster Than the Wind In a Wind-Powered Cart
The Blackbird craft has a ratchet in its drive system which categorically prevents the propellor from ever powering the wheels, whether by air interaction or by discharging built-up/stored rotational momentum. Its presence (and verification of functionality) was mandated by the organisation refereeing the record attempt (NALSA).

Comment: Re:So they RDP to a ground computer.... (Score 1) 201

by sidyan (#30866424) Attached to: Space Station Astronauts Gain Internet Access

That would be glorious nation of Kazakhstan, who do not take well to visits of lawyers from countries run by little girls (and especially not Uzbek ones).

Also, even the recovery teams from Roscosmos themselves sometimes take a while to locate the landing site of a Soyuz spacecraft.

Comment: Re:So they RDP to a ground computer.... (Score 1) 201

by sidyan (#30863708) Attached to: Space Station Astronauts Gain Internet Access

They will just have an army of lawyers waiting at the runway for them when they come back down to earth.

Not if you fly Soyuz.

Which is what anyone wanting to get to the ISS will have to do in a year or two, until US commercial transport becomes available another few years down the line.

Comment: Re:Floating Mountains explained (Score 1) 275

by sidyan (#30553034) Attached to: The Science of <em>Avatar</em>
Earnshaw's Theorem doesn't apply to diamagnetic materials (e.g. superconductors). For such materials Earshaw's formulas dictate the exact opposite they do for dipoles and paramagnetic materials: diamagnetic materials can be stable in all directions at once, but not unstable in all directions at once (both can be stable in some directions and unstable in others at once, though).

Comment: Nearest sextuplet (Score 5, Informative) 88

by sidyan (#30405596) Attached to: Big Dipper "Star" Actually a Sextuplet System

In case anyone was wondering (and since TFA doesn't mention it), the nearest sextuplet star, is, of course, Alpha Geminorum, a.k.a. Castor, the second-brightest star in the zodiac sign of Gemini, a.k.a. the Twins. It's some 50-odd lightyears away.

Note that Beta Geminorum, a.k.a. Pollux, is actually the brightest star in Gemini (whether Johann Bayer labelled Castor as the alpha star because it rises first in the night's sky, or because mythologically, the twins are always labelled "Castor and Pollux", is unknown). Pollux is a single star, with one confirmed exoplanet, Polydeuces orbitting it.

Regardless of whether a mission expands or contracts, administrative overhead continues to grow at a steady rate.