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Posts tagged “NASA

THE DISTANCE BETWEEN US


SpaceMapPlanets

I’d like to take a moment to mention scale. See that NASA approved map of our solar system? Lots of kids buy that at NASA in Florida, Alabama, Houston, and hang it on their wall.

Now you and I know it’s not to scale. Hell, we ALL know it’s not to scale. But damn, how many people appreciate just how far off the chart this map really is?

Wildly Inaccurate doesn’t begin to describe it.

By scale I mean, in this case, sizes and distance. People see posters of our solar system like the NASA approved one above and may read the fine print that accurately tells them the sizes and distances, but they still don’t have a clear frame of reference.

You tell them of the miles each planet is from the sun and they nod. Then you later find out they didn’t really Get It. Then they go off and make “intelligent” movies like THE DAY THE EARTH STOOD STILL, where movie critics say, “Gosh! That’s smart science fiction!”

NO! No it is not.MichaelRennieOn that NASA approved poster, the visual scale of both planet size and distance is so grossly exaggerated to an astronomical scale that most folks don’t understand just HOW horribly exaggerated it really is.

The mistakes of distance and scale of our solar system, even to people who write Science Fiction, dominate literature and cinema.

So I want to talk scale in regards to size and distance. Planet sizes in the following images are rounded up to the nearest pixel.GroupDISTANCE-

I’m talking approximate distance, averaged out, since the planets (except for Mercury) are on a long elliptical, not basically circular, orbits around Sol (even our moon travels an elliptical orbit around earth). Also, some orbits are more elongated than others.

Earth40pxEarth is approx. 98 million miles from the sun. 98 Million Freaking Miles. If you could launch from the surface of the sun and were traveling as fast as the International Space Station, 5 miles a second or 17,150 miles an hour, it would take you the better part of a year, a little over 238 days or approximately 7 months, to reach the earth. That 98 million miles from Sol puts us around 30,760,000 miles from Venus and 43,100,000 miles from –

Mars22pxMars, at nearly half the size of earth, is 141,100,00 miles from the sun. We’re closer to Mars than our own sun.

Jupiter448pxJupiter at 483 million miles from Sol, and 2.5 times more massive than all of our other planets combined, is about 4 times farther from earth – 385 million miles – than we are from the Sun, and close to three times farther from Mars than Mars is from the sun.

Okay, so now we’re in the realm of Jovian planets, and this bears repeating: all solar system maps I’ve ever seen – and I’ve seen plenty – are visually inaccurate to a fantastic degree. They all give the proper numbers in distance, but we should really understand the distances here.

Saturn225pxlSaturn, Jupiter’s closest Jovian neighbor, is slightly more than half the size of Jupiter (not counting rings, of course) and over 888 million miles from the sun.

The distance I’m talking here means that Jupiter is closer to earth (385 million miles) than it is to Saturn (405 million miles).

Uranus160pxlNext is Uranus, which is 1.784 billion miles from Sol, making it farther from Saturn (896 million miles), than Saturn is from the sun.

Let me repeat and bold a few things here.
Saturn is about 888 million miles from the sun and Uranus is 896 million miles from Saturn.
Not only is Jupiter closer to earth than it is to Saturn, even Saturn is closer to the sun than Uranus is to Saturn.

You’ve likely read or heard that planets Mercury through Mars are the “inner” planets. That’s true enough but now we clearly understand “inner planets” doesn’t visually paint the whole picture in context, when far flung Saturn is closer to Sol than the very next planet beyond it – Uranus.

It took the straight shot of the Voyager crafts (1 & 2) about 1 year and 3 months to reach Saturn. They reached a maximum traveling velocity of approximately 38,000 miles an hour, they flew 24/7 non-stop, that entire time, and it took a year and three months.

Neptune159pxFinally there is Neptune, which is 2.795 billion miles from the sun. Making Neptune farther from it’s closest Jovian neighbor, Uranus, than Uranus is from Saturn which, again, is closer to the sun than it is to Uranus.

The relative distances between all of the planets of Mercury through Saturn, can fit with plenty of room to spare between the orbits of Uranus and Neptune.

To put that another way, if Uranus was the sun, Neptune would be farther from Uranus/sun (over 1 billion miles) than Saturn actually is from Sol.

Those poster maps of our solar system aren’t even close!

TAKE A TRIP!

How long would it take you to reach Pluto if you could travel twice the speed of light?

Find out at Josh Worth’s award winning webpage,

moonpixel2

REFERENCES –

There are many known planets beyond our solar system, xkcd offers their relative sizes compared to our own.

All space images from NASA archives, used in accordance with NASA’s Media Usage Guidelines.

The Day The Earth Stood Still, 20th Century Fox.
Pandorum, Constantin Film and Impact Pictures

TOOLS –
https://ssd.jpl.nasa.gov/horizons.cgi

END


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It Was Cool The First Time


Okay, so anyone who is interested has heard about Amazon.com’s Jeff Bezos and his somewhat less successful company, Blue Origin launching a rocket into space (above the Karman line, anyway) and then bringing it back to earth and landing it.

If this is the first time you’ve heard about it, but I’ve piqued your interest, then here it is.

That was back in November 16, 2015.

It was very cool for many reasons, not the least of which is that when it comes to phallic rocket designs, the Blue Origin looks more like a dildo than all previous contenders. That’s a rocket powered penis, yo!

But now Jeff Bezos is getting boring. On January 23, 2016, he and Blue Origin – yawn – simply repeated themselves.

Seriously. When you drive a Lamborghini the first time, it’s a thrill and wild and cool. The second time you drive a Lamborghini it’s to pick up milk at the grocery.

Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were the first men on the moon. Remember the names of the guys who were second?*

*Oh don’t go and Google it, ya dink. Here.

You want real action and thrills? Check out the awesome Michael Bay stylings of Elon Musk’s SpaceX!

BLOOIE! WHOA HO!

Space X has done this a few times. January 10, 2015. April 14, 2015 – CRS6. On June 28, 2015, CRS7 blew up during flight so that doesn’t really count.

However, on December 22, 2015, about a month after Blue Origin landed their Cock Rocket (which remains awesome for its, In Your Face, design!),  Space X got together with the NASA mausoleum and successfully landed their space rocket too: Just to show they could do it if they really wanted to.

Then on January 17, 2016, Elon went back to doing what he does best: Stuff Exploding!

KA-BLOOIE!

Elon pulled this off about a week before Jeff repeated himself.

When Elon isn’t blowing up rockets, he makes battery operated race cars with wing doors! Doors that lift up, not swing out! Doors that swing out are for losers. Winners want car doors that go up.

SilconValley

Russ Hanneman (Chris Diamantopoulos) on Mike Judge’s, Silicon Valley. HBO

So to summarize, when Bezos returns to earth he simply walks through the door.

When Musk returns to earth he does it Hardcore! To the Extreme!

That’s why Elon Musk is freaking Metal and Jeff Bezos owns an online Walmart!


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Now on sale for $9.00 in Trade Paperback and in eBook for $1.99. Available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, !ndigo, iTunes, KoboBooks, Smashwords, WHSmith, and more).

Also look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

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This looks like a job for BONES IN SPA-A-A-ACE!


AARP, NASA Look At Bones In Space Aboard ISS
2014-blog_A_ISS-Crew-Expedition-41
BONES: “God damn it, Jim! I’m a just a small country doctor!”
JIM: “Yeah. Beats me why, the hell the, Federation, would ever, put you in charge of medicine, on a Sovereign-class, starship.”
BONES: “I was drafted!”
JIM: “Whew! Somebody in the, high command, really screwed the pooch, over you.”
BONES: “I can’t even cure the common cold!”
SPOCK: “The Common Cold Was Cured Over 100 Years Ago.”
BONES: “Oh. BUT I DIDN’T KNOW THAT! I’m just a small -“
JIM & SPOCK: “- Country doctor.”
JIM: “Yeah, we got it.”
SPOCK: “Well This Has Been Stimulating. I’m Going Back To My Control And Look In My Blue Light View Thing.”
JIM: “About that, Spock. What is, that thing, exactly?”
SPOCK: “It’s Just A Glorified Viewmaster, Captain.”
JIM: “Oh.”
SPOCK: “Pretty Archaic, Actually.”
BONES: “Could be worse. Uhura wears a salt shaker in her ear.”
SPOCK: “Yes, I Have One Of Those Too.”
JIM: “I’ve got five, god damn years, of this left, to go.”
BONES: “Three if we’re lucky.”


PerpetualBulletPB2014Want more? Get my book
PERPETUAL BULLET: A Science Fiction Collection
A trove of previously published Science Fiction Horror Thriller – plus bonus stories
Featuring: Weird Sex, True Love, Monsters and Mayhem!
By E.C. McMullen Jr.
Now on sale for $9.00 in Trade Paperback and in eBook for $1.99 and available for your Android Tablet, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and every other “E”!
Find it at (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Diesel, !ndigo, iTunes, KoboBooks, Smashwords, WHSmith, and more).

Also look for my story Cedo Looked Like People, in the anthology, FEAR THE REAPER, edited by Joe Mynhardt and available in Paperback and eBook.

Looking for a great guidebook on filmmaking? Interviews with Ray Bradbury, Wes Craven, John Carpenter, Tom Holland, George A. Romero, me, and many others in HORROR 201: The Silver Scream Vol.’s 1 & 2.


TAMPA BAY PUNDITFACT HOMEWORK


I’ll serve you today’s Blog

TAMPA BAY PUNDITFACT HOMEWORK
by E.C. McMullen Jr.
Sept. 3, 2014

So … how often does Forward Progressives tell the truth? Do they check their sources before they quote them, or do they only rely on biased sources like Tampa Bay Times?
For that matter, how often does the Tampa Bay Times Politifact (the least credible of the various Politifacts) tell the truth? Or at least do their homework and tell the whole truth?
Study Finds Fact checkers Biased Against Republicans
(a news source, rating competitive news sources)

I ask this after having followed Forward Progressives and Tampa Bay Times Politifact / Punditfact’s linked sources and reading them.

The fact is, Punditfact didn’t rate FoxNews on their news (a Liberal news source, rating a competitive Conservative news source), they rated the non-news talk shows on their pundits – and capriciously included guest speakers (or not) – whenever it suited Tampa Bay to put it in their article.

PunditFact, in their rating system, even went so far as to base their “facts” entirely on the specious notion that their biased, baseless opinion was fact.

For example, read this Pants On Fire link (used in determining if FoxNews is accurate),
Fox’s Doocy: NASA fudged data to make the case for global warming

Without knowing the FoxNews source, PunditFact said,
“We asked Fox News for their source and while they didn’t respond, a number of conservative news outlets have made much in recent days of a blog post from a man who writes under the pseudonym Steven Goddard. Goddard charged that until 2000, NASA reported that in the United States, 1934 was hotter than 1998 and that the country has been cooling since then.”

Tampa bay Politifact then proceeded to tear down what Doocy said, based entirely on the assumption (from uncredited blogs) that the FoxNews source was Steven Goddard (Tony Heller writes under the pseudonym of Steven Goddard, but you wouldn’t know it by reading Tampa Bay Politifact, as they are renown for not doing their homework.  Tony Heller makes no secret of who he really is on the site. The same way I make no secret that Feo Amante is an old nickname of mine).

To shore up their position that Heller is mistaken about NASA scientists fudging the numbers, they use none other than Zeke Hausfather of Berkeley Earth, who critically said of “Goddard”,
“He is simply averaging absolute temperatures.”
“Absolute temperatures work fine if and only if the composition of the station network remains unchanged over time.”

The article continues to quote other scientists who are on both sides of the fence concerning AGW (Anthropogenic Global Warming), both the Believers (Gavin Schmidt) as well as the Skeptics (Anthony Watts), who are united in their critique of Steven Goddard.

So that’s all fair right?

Obviously of course not. Because all of these people criticizing Heller for his poor science means nothing if Heller wasn’t Doocy’s source. Which means Tampa Bay PunditFact didn’t use fact, but biased opinion.

You could just as easily say that Doocy’s source on FoxNews was Climate Scientist, Founder and Scientific Director of Berkeley Earth, Richard A. Muller (also American professor of physics: University of California, Berkeley, and faculty senior scientist at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory), who had this to say about the “Hide the Decline” scandal.
Climategate ‘hide the decline’ explained by Berkeley professor Richard A. Muller
http://youtu.be/8BQpciw8suk

PunditFact is apparently aware of what is written at Berkeley Earth and who writes it. My investigation of their claims was cursory. Their investigation of their reports is abysmal.