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Old 15th July 2015, 14:35   #16
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Fascinating.
@GTO are the perspectives correct? I though vis sun earth would be much much smaller.
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Old 15th July 2015, 14:40   #17
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Lovely Thread Avishar!!! Kudos.

Quote:
Originally Posted by smartcat View Post
Nostalgia !

"There are nine planets in our solar system. Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune & Pluto"
and the trick to remember the sequence

My Very Educated Mother Just Showed Us the Nine Planets
(MVEMJSUNP)
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Old 15th July 2015, 14:52   #18
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Thanks Avishar for this thread and the great information.

Just read an interesting fact about Pluto a few days ago. The other moons of Pluto (Hydra, Nix, Styx & Kerberos) follow some really chaotic rotation. For e.g. Nix can completely flip its pole in a day where sun rises in the east and sets in the north The current hypothesis (not sure if its confirmed) is that the center of gravity of the Pluto & Charon sub-system is above the surface of Pluto. The other moons react to these dynamically changing gravitation and exhibit the chaotic revolutions.

Keep such information flowing.
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Old 15th July 2015, 15:01   #19
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

A small amount of the ashes of American astronomer Clyde Tombaugh are on board the New Horizons spacecraft as it flew by Pluto. What an amazing tribute to the man who discovered the dwarf planet. Last night i saw the Nat Geo episode on this mission and the amount of planning and engineering that has gone into this is just brilliant. A poor commerce pass out like me was left scratching his head just imagining the complexity of this entire project.
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Old 15th July 2015, 15:36   #20
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Awesome write-up avishar!!

It gave great insights into New Horizon and space journey without jarring my head(vis-ŗ-vis Intersteller).

Hard work from scientist almost 10-15 years back has resulted into this historic feat today.

Thanks and Cheers.
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Old 15th July 2015, 17:12   #21
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Wow awesome insights avishar. So much of information. It took 10 years to reach Pluto. What a tremendous achievement. Thanks for sharing such wonderful information with us. Such a unique thread in team-bhp. Never thought that we might dicuss about this. Thanks again. Rated 5 stars.
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Old 15th July 2015, 18:00   #22
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Arrow Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Thanks for the wonderful thread!

After such an extraordinary feat, human-race have just been able to get to the border of our solar system; that too in an unmanned vehicle and it has taken more than a decade to reach there. Travelling the Galaxy and then the Universe is still a distant dream; Looks almost impossible, as of now!

Makes me feel like some micro ... micro organism, living in this universe.
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Old 15th July 2015, 18:55   #23
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Wow! Excellent write up. A good reminder of how much more there is to life.
Very excited to read this! A fascination that will never end!
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Old 15th July 2015, 20:09   #24
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@avishar
A complex mission explained in a simple manner, making it exciting even to those who may have skipped those articles in the press. There's so much more out there in this vast universe, and yet we just can't get over our petty differences down here.
A fantastic thread. Thanks.
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Old 15th July 2015, 20:17   #25
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Brilliant write up avishar

Its' always the most knowledgeable who are able to put forward complex things in a simplified manner

Thanks for the detailed info. I got more information here than from the press!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sudev View Post
Fascinating.
@GTO are the perspectives correct? I though vis sun earth would be much much smaller.
Its' more or less accurate. The arrow points at the fourth sphere.
The Sun is roughly 109 times the Earth's size if you consider them as just spheres and not their volumes.

Source : http://www.suntrek.org/sun-as-a-star...nd-earth.shtml

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chethan B G View Post
Makes me feel like some micro ... micro organism, living in this universe.
In case you haven't seen this Chetan;



Since this video was made the Universe is claimed to be even larger, taking into consideration things like 'theory of relativity, ' observable universe ' and degree of expansion etc. etc.
Estimates put it around 90 billion light years in diameter.

We are but a very insignificant minuscule particle in a vast ocean of space with an even minuscule time in its' time space continuum.

SO PARTY!

Last edited by psispace : 15th July 2015 at 20:32.
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Old 15th July 2015, 21:26   #26
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Thanks for that Avishar; made for a very interesting read.

Have always been interested in astronomy, and your thread hit the spot.
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Old 15th July 2015, 21:30   #27
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Posting a reply from a friend .

Quote:

http://sankara.net/plutoflyby.html

How is it powered?"
It has a radioisotope thermoelectric generator or a "nuclear battery" if you will, which converts heat released from radiactive decay into electricity using thermocouples. The battery weighs about 11kg and produces ~300W of electricity. This type of battery is used for most satellites/probes.
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Old 15th July 2015, 21:52   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chethan B G View Post
Thanks for the wonderful thread!

After such an extraordinary feat, human-race have just been able to get to the border of our solar system; that too in an unmanned vehicle and it has taken more than a decade to reach there.
It has not yet reached the edge of solar system. For comparison, after 35 years of travel Voyager-1 entered intergalactic space in 2012.
Border of solar system is a long way off.
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Old 15th July 2015, 22:50   #29
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Dear Avishar, thank you for this informative and lucidly presented thread. It has been a delight to read and I suspect required some effort on your part to put together.

BHPians, Come to think of it according to some scientific sources there are 100 billion galaxies in our universe that's ten thousand crores. Of those we are domiciled in one which in turn has 400 billion stars ie 40,000 crore stars some bigger and some smaller than our Sun. Of those 40,000 crores our Sun is but one in whose solar system we occupy one of the tinier planets and are but one of 700 and some odd crore people. A sobering thought for our egos and sense of indispensability. Missing the thanks button. - Narayan
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Old 16th July 2015, 00:07   #30
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Default Re: Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration

Hereís the weird thing about these hyper-advanced-dripping-with-Nasa-tech spacecrafts. They are not really that advanced.

Obviously I am would be doing a great disservice by saying so because the instruments are extremely advanced. Often these instruments would be the size of a huge CT Scan machine back on earth,but to be used on space they are lightened,shrunk to minuscule dimensions and hardened to work in the most hostile area known to man.

Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration-mastcamlarge.jpg

Then imagine launching these instruments at very high Gs and then throwing them out to space,shutting them off for years and years and hope they start up exactly to the second when they are programmed too,to start gathering data. Billions of Kms away.

It never ceases to amaze me.

Ofcourse I can not lay claim to the fact that I understand exactly what these instruments do,but do I know that for one spacecraft mission like say for Curiosity or New Horizons,instrument design starts taking place often a decade back.

For example there is a proposal(FINALLY!) to go to Europa. That magical Galilean moon which is covered with ice and has an ocean underneath it. It is not supposed to reach there before the mid 2020s,but instruments have already been finalized.

Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration-europa_tstryk.jpg

But my point was,other than these instruments,the CPU,storage devices and data transmission abilities look positively archaic.

You know some of those Moon conspiracy lunatics and how they keep harping on the fact that Apollo missions could never have taken place because they had the computing power of a toaster? But the fact of the matter is,they did indeed achieve all that powered by toasters!

The Marís Curiosity Roverís CPU is an IBM chip designed in 2001. But ofcourse its not really that simple. It cant be,its Nasa. These chips have to be radiation hardened and extremely durable and hence they are pared down to the bare basic functionality which would be enough to make everything work.

So while it is true that your Iphone has more computing power than what Nasa throws up there on a regular basis,it doesnít mean it cant be done.

New Horizons has a two 8GB solid state memory banks where the data is stored.And a 12Mhz processor.The primary job of the processor is to obviously is to monitor all the instruments and compress/store the data.And then the data transimission rate is a glacial 2,000 bits per second.

It will take 16 months(!!) for New Horizons to send back all the data to earth of its Pluto flyby. The reason why it will take so long is the incredibly slow rate at which data can be transmitted,because of the gigantic distance from Earth to New Horizons.

Most spacecraft cant collect data and send data at the same time. So New Horizons when it has to communicate with Earth,it has to orient itself(and its antenna) towards Earth with a direct line of sight and then send data via radio waves. These radio waves are X-band waves,very narrow wavelength. And they are picked up by Nasaís Deep Space Network which consists of three sites around the world 120 degrees apart from each other so that they can provide full 360 degree collection capability. They are giant radio wave receivers which are used to communicate with almost all interplanetary spacecraft. Since there are,currently,quite a fair number of interplanetary spacecraft whizzing around,they cant all communicate back to Earth at the same time because of scheduling difficulties at the receiving end. So everyone has time-slot and a window for communicating with Earth.


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When you look at the New Horizons Spacecraft the one thing that you might immediately notice,is the lack of solar panels. It doesnt have any.

Its so far away from the Sun,that the sunlight it too weak to generate any discernible amount of power. Therefore NH is nuclear powered. Its strange that NH which is like this emissary of humanity and a beacon of science is nuclear powered.

But its not nuclear power like the ones in our power plants and submarines. New Horizons(and other space missions like Curiosity and Cassini) is powered by the natural radioactive decay of a 10kg of plutonium(ironically). This radioactive decay gives of heat,which is converted to electricity. Because of the long half-live of plutonium,New Horizons " radioisotope thermoelectric generator" will power it for decades to come.

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Tommorow there will be a a longer downlink of data and finally we will get some great global views of the Moons and some Pluto close snaps.

Pluto, at last! A historic day for space exploration-1340935230687749193.jpg
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