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Comment Re:Call me strange but... (Score 1) 126

No, there are no such studies. There are studies confirming that a drop in oxygen levels to the brain, often concurrent with someone about to die, will lead to some pretty wild hallucinations, but what you wrote is just pure bullshit. There is nothing to indicate in any research that the mind is anything more than the sum of actions of several different parts of the brain.

Comment Re:Wow (Score 1) 86

Yeah, landing the booster right next to the refueling tanker seems little,eh... optimistic

The video is clearly stylized and not meant to be taken that literally. Unless you think the arrival of the spacecraft is supposed to make Mars spin until it develops oceans ;)

That said, while there's much to like, there's one aspect of it that's really clawing at me... the fact that they plan to make it out of composites. Including the LOX tank. We've never succeeded (and failed multiple times) at making flight-intent LOX tanks for orbital rockets. And they want to make the first time be on what's by far the largest rocket ever built? Without a lining?

Is it worth mentioning that they just had an explosion somehow related to the only major carbon fiber component in the Falcon 9 in a LOX tank?

CF becomes brittle in LOX. It leaks. And most concerningly, it's impact / shock sensitive in LOX. At atmospheric pressure it usually won't do a self-sustained burn on impact, but it chars on impact, and even that alone would be bad. But they plan to have significant pressure as well. He mentions briefly that they expect this to be one of the biggest challenges, getting stable coatings and the like. I think that's an understatement.

I just don't want to see the largest rocket ever built turn into the largest flying fireball on Earth. I don't trust composites with LOX. Composite cryogenics tanks are an active research topic, and they're making progress, but it's not a solved problem.

Comment Re:Adoption? (Score 1) 126

While people who adopt are doing the world a service, but that doesn't mean that having children of one's own is doing the world a disservice. If you're going to call anyone selfish and sickening, perhaps the adults who bring children into the world that they can't or won't care for should be first on your list.

Comment Re:What selfish bastards (Score 2) 126

There's millions of kids in this world who need adopting. How about they try that instead of passing on their hereditary disorders and polluting the gene pool even further.

I think you kind of missed the point, which is that this lets them pass on most of their genes without passing on their hereditary disorder....

Comment Re:No they aren't denying it (Score 1) 641

IIUC, YHWH started out as either a storm god or a sun god. Some of the evidence seems to indicate sun god, but, e.g., clouds as the chariot of god seem to indicate storm god. Also he sometimes acts at night. War god would just be a secondary characteristic.

And again, IIUC, the really early ancestors of the Jews were a small tribe with one god. Calling them monotheists isn't quite right, though, because they didn't deny the existence of the other gods, they just said they're not our god. The problem here is that when fleeing Egypt they took along a whole bunch of other folk, who followed other gods. That is the period were they started changing into "our god is the only real god", but also the period where they needed to merge the gods together into one god. Please note that the Mosaic commandments don't deny the existence of other gods, they just claim you should only worship this god that gave me these commandments, but about which I'm not going to tell you anything explicit. So no images allowed, and you can't say his name, or even write it in a way that would let someone else say it. (I've always liked the suggestion that it was "Yahu! Wahu!".) But I'm rather convinced, without other evidence, that the purpose of this was to allow various different creeds to be merged into one.

Comment About to be a none issue (Score 1) 220

Seriously, German car makers are pouring in BILLIONS in hopes of stopping Tesla.
Oddly, they should be more worried about Chinese car makers since they have the financial backing of the Chinese gov, who will stop at nothing to beat down western companies.
However, within 5 years, it will be apparent to all, that NOBODY WANTS TO BUY AN ICE CAR. That might even apply to ICE based trucks and SUVs.

Comment Re:So how is it supposed to communicate? (Score 2) 83

At this point if a probe could just taste the plumes, it might be able to identify evidence of organic chemistry, heck maybe even be able to identify the vacuum-desiccated remnants of living organisms. We're decades away from building a probe that could actually bore through even a few kilometers of ice, but being able to build probes that could land on the surface and analyze the deposits left over from plumes should be well within current technical capabilities.

At the moment Europa really is one of our best shots at identifying life on another world. Even if Europa has never developed anything more complex than bacteria, being able to sample its DNA, or even cooler, finding some other system of protein encoding and heredity would literally be one of the most significant scientific discoveries in history. Just having life there, would go a long way to confirming the belief of many scientists that all life needs to get kickstarted is liquid water, organic compounds and energy.

Comment Re: Impressive spec (Score 1) 104

Why compare apples with oranges?

Why show how much sea level and vacuum ISPs vary in other hydrocarbon engines? Because they vary that much in all engine, even non-hydrocarbons (same sort of difference in LOX/LH and solids). Methane is not some sort of magical exception to the rule.

The RD-0162 is the closest unit you can compare the Raptor with. It pushes all its propellant mass through the chamber. It uses the same propellant mixture. Therefore the real world vacuum performance of the sea-level version Raptor can be best guesstimated from the RD-0162 figures rather than by comparing it with dissimilar units.

No, they cannot. You have no clue whatsoever how the efficiency of the RD-0162 compares to Raptor. Not in the slightest. Which makes it a pointless comparison.

Comment Re:So how is it supposed to communicate? (Score 4, Insightful) 83

I think you're confused. Plumes means "in space". The whole benefit of plumes is that you don't need to go under the ice at all, you can do flybies to collect ice particles, or have a lander observe and sample the plumes at the surface. The key is that it means a recent connection between the depths and the surface, and that would be huge for simplifying exploration.

We're nowhere near to being able to launching an ice boring / swimming probe. If I recall correctly the last thing I read on the subject, however, the most promising means for communicating with such a probe on an affordable mass budget was.... not communicating with it. Aka, having it fully autonomous - melting its way down, sampling/observing the ocean, then re-melting its way back to the surface - then and only then transmitting. The waiting period with no data would be stressful (as if it failed you'd never know why), but it could potentially be used on almost any icy solid body regardless of the ice thickness.

It's also possible that there's liquid water much closer to the surface than the global ocean. There are some inferred lakes at a depth of only a few kilometers, which is potentially short enough for a probe to maintain a fiber connection with the surface. And after JUICE and Clipper, we may well have found locations that are even shallower.

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