Curiosity Heat Shield Release (Stabilized) - High Resolution
“touchdown” = one of the coolest videos i’ve ever seen.
love the guy who jumps the celebration. Usain Bolt of mars curiosity!
Also skycrane mother fucker!!!
just in case anyone misseD REALLY EXCITED PEOPLE HUGGING ABOUT MARS
If you’ve been to a crowded airport, sporting event, or even a kid’s birthday party lately, a little peace and quiet might sound like the perfect thing to help you kick back and relax. Just don’t let things get too quiet, or you might drive yourself a wee bit insane: the anechoic chamber at Orfield Laboratoriesin Minnesota can mute 99.99% of all sound, but visiting the silent oasis isn’t as calming as you might expect.
The room holds the current Guinness World Record as the quietest place on the planet, and companies from all over the world seek out its unique acoustic properties. The walls of the chamber are lined with sound-absorbing baffles that can capture noise and mute it in an instant. This allows companies — both Whirlpool and Harley-Davidson have visited — to test just how noisy their products are without the risk of outside interference.
But while the super-silent oasis is a great testbed for various products, it holds a darker side: silence, it turns out, can put a great strain on the human brain. Researchers at NASA test the room’s unique acoustic capabilities on humans rather than hardware. The noiselessness is used to simulate the silence of space — an environment astronauts would be well served to grow accustomed to.
What they’ve found is that when all outside noise is removed from an enclosure, human hearing will do its best to find something to listen to. In a room where almost 100% of sound is muted, people begin to hear things like their own heartbeat at a greatly amplified volume. As the minutes tick by in absolute quiet, the human mind begins to lose its grip, causing test subjects to hallucinate.
NASA then monitors how the would-be space explorers react, and whether they can get past the very obvious awkwardness of seeing or hearing things that aren’t actually there. According to lab officials, the longest anyone has lasted is 45 minutes before being allowed to hear the sweet sounds of planet Earth once again.
In the end, the chamber has proven a valuable scientific tool, just don’t plan on renting it for some peace and quiet — it may do more harm than good.
Fires in The Sky
Astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) used a digital camera to capture several hundred photographs of the aurora australis, or “southern lights,” while passing over the Indian Ocean on September 17, 2011. You can see the flowing ribbons and rays below as the ISS passed from south of Madagascar to just north of Australia between 17:22 and 17:45 Universal Time. Solar panels and other sections of the ISS fill some of the upper right.
Credit: NASA/ Earth Observatory
From the Guardian: “The choice of soundtrack for the Tiangong launch raised several questions. Is this the work of an idealist seeking to usher in a new era of trans-Pacific co-operation, a nationalist who wants to colonize American culture as well as outer space, or simply a propaganda gaffe? When asked why an American hymn was chosen, the state channel appeared to be stumped. “I don’t know how to answer your question,” Chen Zhansheng of the CCTV propaganda department said. “I cannot help you.’”
While their space station is more of a single-pod dock and living/research center, for some reason, this STILL worries me.
china stop mindfucking our government
god knows they have enough to worry about
In this photo taken and posted to Twitter by NASA astronaut Ron Garan aboard the International Space Station, bright green swirls of the aurora australis are seen from the Earth’s orbit above Tasmania. Garan, who snapped this photo on Sept. 14, was scheduled to depart the space station on Sept. 15 after spending five and a half months in space.
The week in photos
Could NASA have launched a secret mission to the moon like in the new film ‘Apollo 18’?
The cost and logistics of paying for, and covering up, a secret mission into space would prove incredibly difficult.
Dear Mother Nature Network:
If you write an article with a headline that is a question, and the answer to that question is “No”?
DON’T MAKE THE ARTICLE.
Don’t Get Neil deGrasse Tyson Started About the Un-Science-y Politicians Who Are Killing America’s Dreams
As we’ve learned time and time again, when you need to hear someone kvetch hard about the state of science in this country, point your radio telescopes at Hayden Planetarium head Neil deGrasse. In the midst of the debt debacle, he responds to Bill Maher’s question about Washington’s possible assassination of the James Webb Space Telescope with a ranty explanation of how Congress is mortgaging the futuristic dreams Americans used to have. He ends with a good question: How far can science go in Washington when so few Congressmen are scientists?
neil degrasse tyson is a bamf