# FeaturedB Space Stuff and Launch Info

1. Feb 12, 2018

### Stavros Kiri

Last edited: Feb 12, 2018
2. Mar 6, 2018

### OmCheeto

This "anniversary" photo popped up in my twitter feed this morning:

March 6, 1994
STS-62
Atomic oxygen glow around the rear section of the space shuttle.
[refs: wiki Day 3, NASA Day three???? see below]

NASA STS-62
Launch March 4, 1994; 8:53:01am EST
On Flight Day Three (Sunday, March 3, 1994)
Flight Day 4 began Monday, March 7, 1994 at 12:53 a.m.

It would appear, that those rocket scientists, can make typos, also.
Either that, or they've been doing time travel experiments.

3. Mar 6, 2018

### OmCheeto

Weird coincidence? This just popped up in my Facebook feed:

APOD, 2016.03.06
Colorful Airglow Bands Surround Milky Way
Image Credit & Copyright: Xiaohan Wang

Is it "Atomic glow day", or something?

4. Mar 10, 2018

### nsaspook

https://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk...tealthy-startup-of-launching-rogue-satellites

5. Mar 10, 2018

### JMz

You nailed it, IMO!

6. Mar 13, 2018

### Stavros Kiri

7. Mar 14, 2018

### Stavros Kiri

8. Mar 14, 2018

### JMz

Well, there is some evidence that dying people can hang on until some date or event occurs that is especially meaningful to them. E.g., Muslims & Ramadan: Since, over time, Ramadan occurs throughout the year, it's possible to control for seasonal effects. (However, that's a finding of many years ago, so it's possible that it's been disproven since.)

9. Mar 14, 2018

### Stavros Kiri

What about being born (i.e. Hawking) on Galileo's death date? [Jan 8] (Another Physicist's coincidence, I guess ...)

10. Mar 15, 2018

### JMz

I don't believe he had much choice about that. But it's a nice one, to be sure!

11. Mar 19, 2018

### Stavros Kiri

12. Mar 19, 2018

### Staff: Mentor

That is unfortunate, but not too tragic. It surpassed its goals by a huge margin. Even the K2 mission alone would have been great. In 2013, as the critical reaction wheel failed, someone wanted to put the whole German Wikipedia article into the past ("was a space telescope") and so on. See how much it discovered since then!
Kepler revolutionized our knowledge about exoplanets, and lead the way to the next-generation telescopes.

We don't have to wait long: TESS will be launched April 16th. CHEOPS will be launched towards the end of the year. While TESS should find more planets than Kepler did, the focus is now on measuring their properties instead of just collecting them.

13. Mar 26, 2018

### Staff: Mentor

14. Mar 27, 2018

### Staff: Mentor

15. Mar 27, 2018

### JMz

:-( (There is no button for "Thanks for the post, but I regret the content of what you posted.")

16. Apr 1, 2018

### Stavros Kiri

17. Apr 16, 2018

### Staff: Mentor

TESS will be launched on Wednesday 22:51 UTC (time zone reference: this post was made Tuesday 01:25 UTC).
Originally it was planned for Monday, but an issue with the guidance system delayed it for two days.

It is the successor to the Kepler mission. It is expected to find more than 20,000 planets (as comparison: we currently know about 3800) - most of them much larger than Earth, but 500-2000 should be roughly Earth-sized, many of them in the habitable zone around their star. TESS targets bright stars, which means they will all be accessible to follow-up observations with other telescopes to confirm their existence, to measure their mass, to look for atmospheres and so on.

The Falcon 9 rocket launch of the satellite could be interesting as well. Apart from the usual livestream (including landing the first stage on the barge) Elon Musk tweeted "SpaceX will try to bring rocket upper stage back from orbital velocity using a giant party balloon". The second stage was expected to leave Earth orbit permanently, but entering the atmosphere again is easy as well. Surviving the reentry, on the other hand...

Edit: Hans: The second stage will not be de-orbited on this mission but it will be put in a hyperbolic disposal orbit.
I guess Musk's comment applies to future missions, not TESS.

Also upcoming: Gaia's second data release (April 25). A total of 1.7 billion sources. 1.3 of them with positions, parallaxes and proper motion together with some other basic parameters. It should allow a re-calibration of the whole cosmic distance ladder, and should resolve a couple of puzzles about stellar distances.

Last edited: Apr 16, 2018
18. Apr 21, 2018

### Greg Bernhardt

I love this photo of the TESS rockets. That fuel is beautiful!

19. Apr 22, 2018

### Stavros Kiri

... as long as you're not nearby!

20. Apr 29, 2018

### Staff: Mentor

Blue Origin is preparing a new launch of New Shepard in a few minutes.

Livestream

New Shepard is a fully reusable suborbital rocket and the rocket (the individual object!) made several flights already. While it is planned to launch humans to space in the capsule, New Shepard is also the precursor to New Glenn, a partially reusable orbital rocket with a planned maiden flight in 2020. It will be quite similar to Falcon 9, but larger and potentially a bit cheaper.

21. Apr 29, 2018

### Greg Bernhardt

Maybe I am wrong but it seems like Blue Origin is trailing SpaceX? I find this surprising considering Bezos insane fortune.

22. Apr 30, 2018