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    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 1 January 1999 [1/6] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... S P A C E V I E W S Issue 1999.01.01 1999 January 1 http://www.spaceviews.com/1999/01/ *** News *** NEAR Thruster Abort Delays Eros Rendezvous Private Investors to Keep Mir in Orbit, Russia Says SOHO in Safe Mode Shuttle Chief Warns About Safety of Orbiters Lunar Prospector in Lower Orbit Nozomi Spacecraft on Its Way to Mars Contradictory Findings on Accelerating Universe NASA Gives AXAF Observatory New Name Ariane, Long March, Proton Launches Successful SpaceViews Event Horizon Other News *** Articles *** Shooting for the Moon Editor's Note: With this issue we are changing our publishing schedule. Instead of sending out issues twice a month, we will be sending out issues four times a month, on the 1st, 8th, 15th, and 22nd of each month. This will serve you in two ways. By publishing more frequently the news articles you receive will be more timely. Also, by spreading out the content normally found in each issue into more issues, we'll make the size of each issue more manageable, especially for those users whose mail accounts place limits on the size of mail messages. As always, each issue and the latest news are available on our Web site, http://www.spaceviews.com. If you have any questions or comments about this change, please contact me at jeff@spaceviews.com. -- Jeff Foust Editor, SpaceViews *** News *** NEAR Thruster Abort Delays Eros Rendezvous An aborted thruster firing by the Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) spacecraft on December 20 will delay the spacecraft's arrival at the asteroid Eros by over a year. NEAR was scheduled to fire its thrusters for 20 minutes at 5 pm EST (2200 UT) December 20, the first of four thruster burns that would have put the spacecraft in orbit around Eros by mid-January. However, contact with NEAR was lost around the time of the thruster burn and not reestablished for more than one day. When contact with NEAR was reestablished, controllers found that the burn had been aborted. Engineers believe the burn was aborted when certain safety limits in the spacecraft's autonomous control system were violated during the settling burn, a brief firing of attitude control thrusters before the main thruster burn. The delay in reestablishing contact with NEAR meant that the other thruster burns necessary for a January arrival at Eros could not be carried out. On December 30 NASA announced plans for a thruster burn on January 3 that will put NEAR into an orbit that will bring it back to Eros in mid-February of 2000. While disappointed with the delay arriving at Eros, mission managers were able to offer something of a consolation prize to scientists and others involved with the mission. NEAR performed a flyby of Eros on December 23, passing within 4,100 km (2,500 mi.) on December 23. NEAR returned about 1,100 images of the asteroid during the flyby, showing features as small as 500 meters (1,650 feet) across. NEAR's infrared spectrometer and magnetometer also collected data on the composition of Eros and the existance of any magnetic fields around the asteroid. "The abort lost us time but the flyby gave us valuable information about Eros' shape and mass that we wouldn't have had -- information that will help us during our orbital phase a little more than a year from now," NEAR project manager Thomas Coughlin said. Private Investors to Keep Mir in Orbit, Russia Says Private investors have been found to keep the Russian space station Mir in orbit through the year 2001, officials with the company that operates the station announced Wednesday, December 23. Yuri Semionov, president of the Energia company, refused to name the investors or the amount of money they were contributing. Russian officials have previously said that it costs $20 million a month to operate Mir, so the deal could be worth up to $720 million. Semionov has asked the Russian government to draft guarantees for the investment, and that the funding agreement would be signed as soon as those guarantees were ready. Energia officials and Russian cosmonauts have said on many occasions that Mir could continue to operate through 2001, despite past problems with the station and plans to deorbit the station in mid-1999. "It is purely a political question that there is pressure for us to get rid of Mir as soon as possible," veteran cosmonaut Anatoly Solovyov told Reuters in November. "It is clear why. Who has the station? We do." In November the Russian Space Agency asked NASA to change the plane of the orbit of the International Space Station to that of Mir's, to enable easy movement of equipment of even entire modules from Mir to ISS. Russia later dropped the request when NASA showed no interest in supporting it. Any plans to keep Mir in orbit beyond mid-1999 could endanger Russia's participation in the International Space Station. American analysts and NASA officials have questioned Russia's ability to maintain both Mir and ISS given the country's serious economic problems. Also, any effort to prolong Mir's life in orbit may violate signed ISS agreements between the United States and Russia. SOHO in Safe Mode Just two months after the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft had fully recovered from earlier serious problems, the spacecraft entered a safe mode late Monday, December 21, possibly from the failure of the last working gyro. Spacecraft controllers report that SOHO entered a safe mode at 12:49 pm EST (1749 UT) December 21. Preliminary indications are that the sole working gyro on the spacecraft had failed. If true, and the gyro cannot be restored, it may be difficult to impossible for the spacecraft to resume normal operations. No further information on the spacecraft status was available from mission control. A message posted on the SOHO Web site late Tuesday, December 22, stated that no scientific observations will be performed with SOHO until software to permit gyroless observations can be uploaded. No date was set for observations to resume. Scientists and engineers had just celebrated the complete restoration of SOHO in October, when after nearly four months of effort they were able to bring SOHO back to normal after an accident crippled the spacecraft. SOHO started tumbling June 24, a problem traced to the human error by ground controllers when they tried using a switched-off gyro to orient the spacecraft. SOHO remained out of contact until early August. Engineers worked to bring SOHO's systems back online, stop the tumbling, and check out the scientific instruments. Although many predicted that only some of SOHO's instruments could be brought back online, all instruments were eventually restored. "I tip my hat to the engineers who built this spacecraft and these sensitive but robust instruments," Bernhard Fleck, the ESA project scientist for SOHO, said in October. The joint NASA/ESA SOHO spacecraft was launched in December 1995. It completed its primary mission in April 1998 and entered an extended mission to monitor the Sun as it entered the peak of its 11-year activity cycle. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 1 January 1999 [2/6] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... Shuttle Chief Warns About Safety of Orbiters The manager of NASA's space shuttle program has expressed concern about a number of recent incidents that affected the safety of shuttle orbiters and has reminded the shuttle workforce to be more vigilant about safety. In a memo dated November 20 but published publicly earlier this week on the NASA Watch Web site, shuttle manager Tommy Holloway noted three incidents within the past 13 months that could have led to serious accidents with the shuttle. "History tells us that all major events are preceded by a number of smaller, less significant, and less observed events which provided insight and avoidance opportunities," Holloway said in the memo to shuttle workers. "As we observe these events, we realize the importance of being alert for these 'wake- up' calls and of taking timely action to respond to them." The first of the three incidents took place in November 1997, when the shuttle Atlantis was ferried from Florida to California atop a 747 for upgrades. A washer for one of the bolts used to secure the shuttle was missing. According to Holloway only "the high level of structural margin in the design" prevented an accident that could have destroyed the shuttle and 747 and killed the 747 flight crew. In June, a pressure sensor for one of the main engines on the shuttle Discovery failed 20 seconds into the flight. A broken piece of test equipment inadvertently left in place was later blamed for the failure. Had the sensor failed later in the launch, Holloway said, the engine could have shut down, forcing an abort and a landing attempt in Spain or North Africa. In October, the door to the drag chute compartment fell off seconds before Discovery lifted off on flight STS-95. The door bounced off one of the main engines nozzles after it fell off; had it done so differently it could have damaged the nozzle and even caused an "uncontained failure" of the engine. Holloway followed up the report of the near-accidents with eight pieces of advice for shuttle workers, ranging from sharing information with coworkers to taking time to do the job right. "Cutting corners and hurrying to do a job are sure ways to fail," he warned. "If you don't think you have the time to do it right, take time out!" "We are in for a very challenging and dynamic period," Holloway said, noting that the shuttle will be called upon for the assembly of the International Space Station, among other planned missions. "Learning from history, I believe that rigorous application of these steps will decrease the probability of a Space Shuttle incident to improbable." Lunar Prospector in Lower Orbit Flight controllers have recently maneuvered the Lunar Prospector spacecraft into a new lower orbit, in preparations for putting the spacecraft into a very low orbit for detailed studies of the lunar surface. On December 19 controllers fired Lunar Prospector's thrusters to move the spacecraft from its previous 100-km (62-mi.) orbit into a lower 40-km (25-mi.) orbit above the lunar surface. There were no problems reported with the maneuver. Prospector's new orbit will be a temporary one. In January the orbit will be further lowered by controllers, eventually placing the spacecraft into an orbit 25-30 km (16-19 mi.) above the Moon. That maneuver will end Prospector's year-long primary mission and begin its extended mission. During the extended mission, expected to last into mid-1999, Prospector will conduct high-resolution studies of regions of the Moon. Those studies will include efforts to better define the regions of the lunar poles where water ice may be hidden. During the extended mission scientists will also continue to study the Moon's magnetic field, including detailing regions of the Moon with unusually strong magnetic fields. Spacecraft instruments will also study the composition of the moon with greater resolution. "Lunar Prospector's instruments have gathered such superior data that we have far exceeded our primary mission objectives," said Sylvia Cox, Lunar Prospector mission manager. "This success raises our expectations about getting an even closer look at the lunar surface, collecting data at higher resolutions, and gaining further insights about our closest celestial neighbor." The extended mission will end when Prospector runs out of fuel needed to maintain its orbit through the Moon's notoriously "lumpy" gravitational field. The spacecraft will then crash to the surface. Nozomi Spacecraft on Its Way to Mars The Japanese spacecraft Nozomi completed last week a series of Earth and Moon swingbys needed to send the spacecraft towards Mars, but extra propellant needed to complete the gravity assists may affect the future of the mission. Nozomi entered a trans-Mars trajectory with a 7-minute thruster burn during an Earth flyby early December 20. That flyby had been preceded by lunar flybys September 24 and December 18. Mission officials expressed concern about two course-correction thruster firings on December 21. The burns were longer than expected to compensate for "insufficient acceleration" during the Earth flyby. The impact those extra burns on the rest of the mission are under investigation. Nozomi, Japanese for "hope", is the first mission to Mars by anyone other than the United States or the former Soviet Union/Russia. the $80-million spacecraft will orbit the Red Planet and study its magnetic fields, atmosphere, and ionosphere. The spacecraft is scheduled to arrive at Mars in October 1999. Nozomi was launched July 4 on a Japanese M-V booster. The booster is not powerful enough to launch the spacecraft on a direct Mars trajectory, so controllers used a series of gravity assists and thruster burns to build up velocity. At the time of launch the spacecraft was named "Planet-B"; it received its current name shortly after launch. Contradictory Findings on Accelerating Universe The discovery that the expansion of the universe may be accelerating, and not slowing down as once thought, was named the top science story of 1998 by the journal Science Thursday, December 17. However, data released just one day later contradicts those earlier findings by showing that the universe's expansion is slowing down as predicted by theory. Work by two separate international research groups showed that the rate of expansion of the universe appears to be accelerating. Astronomers measured the Doppler redshift of distant supernovae and compared the light with similar, nearby supernovae to determine the distances to the distant objects, and hence the expansion rate. Most astronomers believed that the results would show that the rate of expansion had decreased since the Big Bang some 15-20 billion years ago. Instead, they found that the rate of expansion was increasing, meaning galaxies were flying away from each other at higher rates now than ever before. It also means that there is far less mass than necessary to ever stop the expansion. The results have strong implications for theories of the Big Bang. Inflation theory, the leading theory to explain the sudden growth of the universe a tiny fraction of a second after the Big Bang, requires a universe with just enough mass to stop its expansion, or more than what recent observations show. The acceleration also implies that an unknown force is at work to cause galaxies to speed up. A leading explanation is the "cosmological constant", a term introduced into general relativity by Albert Einstein to prevent the expansion of the universe, which his theories predicted. Einstein later retracted the constant, calling it his "greatest blunder." Jeffrey Peterson, an astronomer at Carnegie Mellon University, announced at an astrophysics conference in Paris December 18 findings that contradicted earlier results using data from the Viper Telescope, an submillimeter-wavelength telescope located in Antarctica. Peterson reported that observations of distant gas clouds showed that their angular size -- about one-half of a degree of arc -- was exactly that predicted for a universe whose rate of expansion is slowing as predicted by inflation theory. "These findings indicate that the material of the universe was given just the right kick by the Big Bang to expand forever, never collapsing, but also never becoming so dilute that gravity can be ignored," Peterson said. "This delicate balance is hard to understand unless inflation theory, or something akin to it, is correct," he concluded. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 1 January 1999 [3/6] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... NASA Gives AXAF Observatory New Name NASA's Advanced X-Ray Astrophysics Facility (AXAF), now scheduled for launch in April of 1999, will be named after a famed astronomer, the space agency announced Monday, December 21. AXAF will now be known as the Chandra X-Ray Observatory after Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, a late Nobel-winning astrophysicist. Chandrasekhar was known to friends and colleagues as "Chandra", a word that also means "Moon" or "luminous" in Sanskrit. "Chandrasekhar made fundamental contributions to the theory of black holes and other phenomena that the Chandra X-ray Observatory will study," said NASA administrator Dan Goldin. "His life and work exemplify the excellence that we can hope to achieve with this great observatory." Chandrasekhar was born in India and moved to the United States in the mid-1930s, when he joined the faculty of the University of Chicago. He won the Nobel Prize in physics in 1983 for work completed much earlier in his career on the physical processes that control the structure and evolution of stars. He remained at the University of Chicago until his death in 1995. "Chandra's work on the mass limit of white dwarfs really set the stage for our understanding of violent events in the evolution of stars," said Chicago astronomy professor Peter Vandervoort. "His work lays the foundation for the modern understanding of neutron stars and black holes that will come from the data collected by the Chandra Observatory." The name was selected from among 6,000 entries submitted by students and teachers from all 50 states and 61 countries. Fifty-nine entires suggested the name Chandra; of those, two people, an Idaho student and a California physics teacher, won trips to see the Chandra Observatory launch. That launch has now been scheduled for no earlier than April 8, 1999, NASA announced the same day as the new name for the telescope. The Chandra Observatory will be carried into orbit on the shuttle Columbia on mission STS-93. The launch, once scheduled for August 1998, was pushed back to December a year ago because of problems with the assembly and testing of the spacecraft. The launch was delayed again in October because of electrical problems with the spacecraft and plans to conduct a thorough review of the spacecraft before shipping it to Florida from the California facilities of TRW, assemblers of the spacecraft. The April launch date is contingent on shipping the spacecraft to Florida on or before January 28 and a successful independent review in mid-February of the spacecraft's control center in Cambridge, Massachusetts. When launched, the Chandra Observatory will fly in a highly-elliptical orbit that will permit X-ray observations free from the Earth's atmosphere, which absorbs X-rays, and the Van Allen radiation belts, which also interfere with observations. It will provide observations of X-ray sources, including black holes and supernovae, 25 times sharper than previous X-ray missions. Ariane, Long March, Proton Launches Successful Launches of satellites ranging from replacement Iridium satellites to Russian global positioning satellites on three different boosters were successful in late December. A Long March LM-2C/SD lifted off at approximately 6:30 am EST (1130 UT) Saturday, December 19, from the Taiyuan launch center in eastern China. Its payload, two Iridium satellites, successfully reached orbit shortly after launch. The satellites will be placed in plane 2, one of 6 orbital planes used by Iridium satellites. The two satellites will serve as on-orbit replacements for the existing satellites in the plane. The constellation of 66 operational satellites entered commercial service November 1, providing cellular phone service to nearly any point on the Earth. An Ariane 42L lifted off at 8:08 pm EST Monday, December 21 (0108 UT December 22) from the Ariane launch facility in Kourou. The launch, the second one this month and the 11th overall this year, was a success and its payload, the PAS-6B comsat for PanAmSat, was placed into orbit. PAS-6B will be used to provide direct TV services to Latin America. Half of its 32 Ku-band transponders will be used to provide broadcasting for Brazil while the other half will be used for the rest of Latin America. A Proton with a Blok-D upper stage lifted off from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan December 30 at 1:35 pm EST (1835 UT). The launch placed three Uragan satellites, named Kosmos 2362, 2363, and 2364, into orbit. The three satellites will form part of Russia's Glonass (Global Navigation Satellite System), similar to the United States' Global Positioning System. The three satellites launched Wednesday will all orbit in the same plane 19,000 km (11,780 mi.) above the Earth. The Glonass system now has 21 of the 24 satellites necessary for full operations. SpaceViews Event Horizon January 3 Delta 2 launch of the Mars Polar Lander spacecraft, from Cape Canaveral, Florida at 3:21 pm EST (2021 UT) January 3 Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) spacecraft thruster burn January 13 Atlas 2AS launch of the JCSAT-6 comsat, from Cape Canaveral, Florida at 7:40 pm EST (0040 UT Jan. 14) January 14 Delta 2 launch of the Argos, Sunsat, and Oersted satellites from Vandenberg AFB, California, at 5:58 am EST (1058 UT) Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 1 January 1999 [4/6] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... Other News SpaceDev, JPL Deal: In a first-of-its-kind deal, SpaceDev, the first commercial space exploration company, has signed a contract with JPL to study the use of NASA's Deep Space Network (DSN) for a planned SpaceDev mission, the company announced December 15. Under the contract, JPL's Telecommunications and Mission Operations Directorate (TMOD) will start the process of allocating time on the DSN for SpaceDev's Near Earth Asteroid Prospector (NEAP) mission, scheduled for launch in 2001 for a mid-2002 rendezvous with the asteroid Nereus. SpaceDev officials said even though the mission is not scheduled for launch for more than two years, planning needs to start now. "The 34-meter DSN dishes we'll need for communicating with NEAP also supports other numerous deep-space missions, so now is the time to make our needs known to JPL and get into the queue," said Rex Ridenoure, SpaceDev's chief mission architect. More X-34 Test Flights: NASA and the Orbital Sciences Corporation (OSC) have reached an agreement to add an additional 25 test flights for the X-34, a pathfinder for future reusable launch vehicles, while ground has been broken on what may become a new test site for the vehicle. In a December 18 announcement, NASA said it would exercise an option in an existing contract with OSC for an additional 25 test flights of the X-34. Under the original contract only two test flights were budgeted, but all parties had assumed additional test flights would occur. Initial test flights of the X-34 are scheduled to occur above the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico. Future tests, though, may be based at other locations, including Florida's Kennedy Space Center, which broke ground on a servicing facility for RLVs December 18. Carbon in the Universe: One of the key ingredients for the formation of life -- complex organic molecules -- may be commonplace in the interstellar medium, two scientists recently reported. In the December 18 issue of the journal Science, Thomas Henning of the Astrophysikalisches Institut in Jena, Germany and Farid Salama of NASA Ames Research Center reported that the unique spectral signature of interstellar dust may be explained by one class of exotic carbon molecules, called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). PAHs were also detected in the Martian meteorite ALH 84001, and were once piece of evidence to support the claim that the meteorite was proof of past Martian life. Quasars and Galaxy Collisions: New radio telescope data has linked quasar activity with galaxy collisions, explaining why some quasars are seen in relatively nearby galaxies, astronomers reported Tuesday, December 29. Scientists mapped the distribution of hydrogen gas around three galaxies between 670 and 830 million light-years away from Earth, using the Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope in New Mexico. In all three cases the hydrogen appeared to have been disrupted by an encounter with another galaxy. An encounter, in the form or a close approach or a collision, would disrupt the hydrogen gas in the galaxy. That gas would then become fuel for the quasar, which most astronomers now believe to be supermassive black holes in the center of galaxies. U.S. Participates in Solar Mission: American scientists will participate in a Japanese mission to study the Sun, NASA announced December 23. The space agency selected three investigations by American scientists for the Solar-B spacecraft, scheduled for launch in 2004. The spacecraft will feature a 50-cm (19.7-inch) telescope capable of making magnetic field measurements in features as small as 110 km (70 mi.) across, 10 times better than previous spacecraft or ground-based telescopes. *** Articles *** Shooting for the Moon by Andrew J. LePage Introduction As the first full calendar year of the Space Age was winding down, American and Soviet teams were pushing hard to be the first to reach the Moon. Between August and early December of 1958, the two countries had each made three attempts to launch lunar probes (see "The First Race to the Moon" in the August 1998 issue of SpaceViews). The three Soviet attempts were unsuccessful due to problems with their newly developed Moon rocket, the 8K72. The first three American probes, originally part of a USAF effort to send spacecraft into lunar orbit that was transferred to NASA, at best only made it into ballistic trajectories that brought them no where near their target. While these three USAF-sponsored lunar probes were unsuccessful, NASA hoped that the last pair of Pioneer probes developed by teams at JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) under William Pickering and ABMA (Army Ballistic Missile Agency) under Wernher von Braun would fare much better. Pioneer 3 The Pioneer lunar probes designed by JPL were much more modest than those built by either STL (Space Technology Laboratory) for the USAF or the Soviet Union's E-1 probe. These tiny, conical probes weighed just six kilograms (13 pounds) each and were instrumented to survey the radiation environment in cis-lunar space. The diminutive size of these probes were the direct result of the limited payload capability of their launch vehicle. Developed by von Braun's team at ABMA, the Juno II was cobbled together from modified components of the Jupiter IRBM and the high-speed solid rocket assembly used by the Juno I that launched America's first satellite (see "Explorer: America's First Satellite" in the February 1998 issue of SpaceViews). The design was hardly optimum for the task but it could still just barely send a usable payload to the Moon. Given the desperation in the United States at the time, almost anything would be attempted to beat the Soviets to any significant goal in space. The first of the JPL/ABMA lunar probes, Pioneer 3, lifted off from Pad 5 at the Atlantic Missile Range at 12:45 AM on December 6, 1958 - the first anniversary of the disastrous Vanguard TV-3 failure. While at first the launch looked good, a review of the telemetry showed that the Jupiter AM-11 booster had cut-off 3.7 seconds early and that the trajectory was lower than planned. Like its predecessors, Pioneer 3 failed to escape the Earth. Early telemetry from Pioneer 3 also indicated that its despin mechanism failed to operate as intended leaving the probe spinning at the launch rate of 415 rpm instead of the slower 11 rpm required for the mission. Pioneer 3 reached a peak altitude of only 102,300 kilometers (63,580 miles) before it burned up over what was then French Equatorial Africa 38 hours and six minutes after launch. Despite the failure, Pioneer 3 still made useful measurements that confirmed the extent of Earth's Van Allen radiation belt and discovered a second belt between 16,000 and 64,000 kilometers (10,000 and 40,000 miles) above the Earth. While scientifically important, it still did not make up for the fact that yet another American spacecraft failed to reach the Moon. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 1 January 1999 [5/6] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... The "Dream" Probe Despite the growing pains experienced during the first 8K72 launches and lagging development of its larger sister Moon rocket, the 8K73, Korolev's team of engineers were quickly climbing the learning curve enabling them to build more reliable and higher performance machines based on the adaptable R-7 ICBM. One such change was to load the Blok E third stage of the 8K72 with a denser grade of kerosene than that used by the core and strap-on boosters thus increasing the stage's fuel load. These and other refinements now allowed the 8K72 to loft over 360 kilograms (790 pounds) into a direct ascent, 34-hour long trajectory towards a lunar impact. Over the coming months these enhancements would doom the increasingly redundant and troubled 8K73 development program. Originally limited to an estimated mass of 170 kilograms (375 pounds), the E-1 probe nicknamed "Lunik" by its builders (a moniker that was later applied by the West to all early Soviet lunar probes) could now afford to gain some weight. The E-1 was a 1.2 meter (4 foot) in diameter, polished aluminum-alloy sphere with a pressurized interior designed to maintain a temperature of 20 C (68 F). It contained all the sensitive electronic equipment including the transmitter, instruments, and batteries to power it all for about 60 hours. Its impressive suite of scientific instruments included a magnetometer mounted on a one-meter long boom, a piezoelectric micrometeorite detector, and devices to detect and characterize various types of cosmic radiation. The fattened E-1 No. 4 weighed in at about 192 kilograms (423 pounds). Instead of wasting the unused payload capability of the 8K72, it was decided that the Blok E escape stage would carry another 169 kilograms (372 pounds) of scientific and radio-equipment to supplement Lunik's measurements. Included was a package to vaporize 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds) of sodium to produce a short-lived artificial comet on the way to the Moon. Originally suggested by Soviet astronomer Iosef Shklovsky, this experiment would yield interesting insights into Earth's outer magnetosphere and serve as a tracking aid. As the world rang in 1959, 8K72 serial number B1-5 was rolled out onto its pad at the NIIP-5 test range in snow covered steppes of Kazhakastan. Under the rocket's nose was 361.3 kilograms (795.6 pounds) of payload including the E-1 No. 4 Lunik probe. At 8:00 PM Moscow Time on January 2, 1959 the giant Moon rocket lifted off in the Soviets' fourth attempt to reach the Moon. Unlike the previous flights, this time the first two stages did not suffer any major malfunctions allowing the Blok E stage to push its cargo towards the Moon. Initial tracking of the probe and escape stage indicated that everything worked and that escape velocity had been achieved for the first time. Lunik, now officially named "Mechta" (Russian for "Dream" but later in history retroactively designated "Luna 1"), was on its way to the Moon. Eight hours after launch at an altitude of about 120,000 kilometers (75,000 miles) over the Indian Ocean, the spent Blok E released a fluorescent cloud of sodium vapor that expanded to 650 kilometers (400 miles) across in five minutes before disappearing from sight. Visible from most of the Eastern Hemisphere, this spectacle was proof that the Soviets were on the way to the Moon. Despite the initial flurry of excitement, careful tracking indicated that the escape stage had imparted slightly too much speed causing the probe to miss the Moon. On January 4, 34 hours after launch, Lunik passed within 6,000 kilometers (3,700 miles) of the Moon on its way into solar orbit. Even though it failed to hit the Moon, the probe's instruments worked perfectly and returned useful data on the cis-lunar environment for the first time. The Soviet press, however, trumpeted the flight as a total success with the first close pass by the Moon and the first man made planet in orbit of the Sun. Mechta was tracked until 62 hours after its launch on January 5, 1959. At a range of about 500,000 kilometers (300,000 miles), the probe's batteries finally gave out ending a less than successful but fruitful mission. The partial success of Mechta's mission provided enough fuel for the Soviet propaganda machine to allow Korolev the time he needed to analyze the mission's results and plan the next step. In the mean time, another apparent space first for the Soviet Union along with the immense size of the payload weighed heavily on an increasingly nervous West. America's Reply The success of the Soviet Lunik probe had an incredible impact on NASA. Under increasing pressure, von Braun needed to make his second - and last - shot at the Moon a success. Except for some additional lead shielding on one of the Geiger-Muller tubes, the 6.1 kilogram (13.4 pound) Pioneer 4 was identical to its unsuccessful predecessor. The tiny probe was finally sent on its way by Juno II Round AM-14 at 1:45 AM on March 3, 1959. A slightly longer than planned burn of the second stage along with a nearly nominal performance of the other stages guaranteed this time that Pioneer 4 had surpassed escape velocity. But calculations based on early tracking of the receding probe quickly showed that this excess velocity and the inevitable aiming errors conspired to place Pioneer 4 on a trajectory that would not pass within 32,000 kilometers (20,000 miles) of the Moon as planned. Instead it would pass the Moon at a distance of 60,000 kilometers (37,300 miles) or around 35 lunar radii - a wide miss by any measure. Two days after launch, Pioneer 4 passed the orbit of the Moon and continued to relay its measurements back to the 85-foot (26-meter) tracking antenna at JPL's Goldstone Station. After 82 hours of operation, the probe's batteries were finally exhausted as Pioneer 4 passed a range of 655,000 kilometers (407,000 miles) on its way into solar orbit. Engineers were confident that they could have tracked Pioneer 4 out to a range of 1.1 million kilometers (700,000 miles) if the batteries had not given out. But despite the new data returned by the probe and the setting of a long distance communications record, the American public still worried about the Soviet Union's growing lead in space and America's feeble attempts to catch up. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 1 January 1999 [6/6] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... Impact at Last Even though the flight of Mechta had generated a lot of propaganda, the goal of actually hitting the Moon was still unachieved. After a six month hiatus, Korolev and his team were ready to try again. The next probe would be a modified version of the original designated E-1A. Based on experience with Lunik, improvements were made to the instruments and the antenna housing. The first of these improved probes, E-1A No. 5, was set to be launched on 8K72 serial number I1-7 on July 16, 1959. Because the fuel tanks of the Blok E escape stage were mistakenly filled with a lighter grade of kerosene, launch was postponed while the tanks were emptied and flushed. Two days later the first of the modified Lunik probes was on its way. But unlike the previous launch, this ascent would not pass without incident. About 153 seconds into the mission, the gyrohorizon in the rocket's guidance system failed. Unable to sense its attitude, the uncontrolled rocket and its payload were destroyed by range safety. After a short review to determine the cause of the failure and correct it, 8K72 serial number I1-7A was rolled out onto the pad for an attempt to launch the 390.2 kilogram (859.2 pound) E-1A No. 6 payload on September 9, 1959. This attempt was timed to take place just before Krushchev's tour of the United States which was set to start on September 15. A successful mission would give the Soviet Premier a valuable propaganda tool. But the first attempt was aborted a half a second before lift off when the core's engine failed to attain full thrust. The rocket was removed from the pad and its payload was quickly transferred to a backup launch vehicle. On September 12, 8K72 serial number I1-7B successfully lifted off and finally sent a second Soviet probe towards the Moon. Radio tracking and sightings of the sodium vapor cloud released by the escape stage six hours after launch at a distance of 156,000 kilometers (97,000 miles) confirmed that the "Second Cosmic Rocket" had not only escaped the Earth but was on course for a lunar impact. At 12:02:24 AM Moscow Time on September 14, 1959 what would one day become known as Luna 2 impacted the Moon at about 30 north latitude on the lunar prime meridian near the crater Archimedes at a speed of 3.3 kilometers (2.1 miles) per second. While observations by Eastern Bloc astronomers of a dust cloud kicked up by the impact were unconfirmed by the West, the radio dish at Jodrell Bank tracked the Soviet lunar probe as it accelerated towards the surface independently confirming Korolev's feat. The Soviet Union had another space first. The importance of this near bulls eye shot was not lost on leaders in the West. Not only were the Soviets the first to actually hit the Moon, they had the technology needed to hit any target near (and presumably on) the Earth. But with this new milestone attained, Korolev quickly turned to beat the Americans again to the next goal: Securing the first images of the unseen farside of the Moon. Bibliography Nicholas Johnson, Handbook of Soviet Lunar and Planetary Exploration, Univelt, 1979 Andrew J. LePage, "The Great Moon Race: In the Beginning...", EJASA, Vol. 3, No. 10, May 1992(available at http://www.seds.org/pub/info/newsletters/ejasa/1992/jasa9205.txt) Robert Reeves, The Superpower Space Race, Plenum Press, 1994 Timothy Varfolomeyev, "Soviet Rocketry that Conquered Space Part 2: Space Rockets for Lunar Probes", Spaceflight, Vol. 38, No. 2, pp. 49-52, February 1996 Timothy Varfolomeyev, "Soviet Rocketry that Conquered Space Part 3: Lunar Launchings for Impact and Photography", Spaceflight, Vol. 38, No. 6, pp. 206-208, June 1996 Author Drew LePage is a physicist and freelance writer specializing in astronomy and the history of spaceflight. He can be reached at lepage@visidyne.com. This has been the January 1, 1999, issue of SpaceViews. SpaceViews is also available on the World Wide web from the SpaceViews home page: http://www.spaceviews.com/ or via anonymous FTP from ftp.seds.org: ftp://ftp.seds.org/pub/info/newsletters/spaceviews/text/990101.txt To unsubscribe from SpaceViews, send mail to: majordomo@spaceviews.com In the body (not subject) of the message, type: unsubscribe spaceviews For editorial questions and article submissions for SpaceViews, contact the editor, Jeff Foust, at jeff@spaceviews.com. For questions about the SpaceViews mailing list, please contact spaceviews-approval@spaceviews.com. ____ | "SpaceViews" (tm) -by Boston Chapter // \ // | of the National Space Society (NSS) // (O) // | Dedicated to the establishment // \___// | of a spacefaring civilization. - To NOT receive future newsletters, send this message to our NEW address: - To: majordomo@SpaceViews.com - Subject: anything - unsubscribe SpaceViews - E-Mail List services provided by Northern Winds: www.nw.net - SpaceViews (tm) is published for the National Space Society (NSS), - copyright (C) Boston Chapter of National Space Society - www.spaceviews.com www.nss.org (jeff@spaceviews.com) Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 8 January 1999 [1/5] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... S P A C E V I E W S Issue 1999.01.08 1999 January 8 http://www.spaceviews.com/1999/0108/ *** News *** Mars Polar Lander Launched NEAR Engine Burn Completed Funding Problems Delay Kistler Plans Arianespace Considers Launching Soyuz Rockets Galaxy Collisions More Common Than Once Thought Superflares May Rock Sun-like Stars New Evidence for Small Comets Published SpaceViews Event Horizon Other News *** Book Reviews *** Probability 1 Genesis: The Story of Apollo 8 Cosmic Adventure *** NSS News *** Upcoming Boston NSS Events Boston NSS December Meeting Summary *** News *** Mars Polar Lander Launched A mission to study the Martian climate and look for water in the south polar regions of the Red Planet lifted off successfully Sunday afternoon, January 3. A Boeing Delta 2, carrying the Mars Polar Lander (MPL) spacecraft, lifted off from Cape Canaveral at 3:21 pm EST (2021 UT). The third stage of the Delta 2 injected MPL into a Mars-bound trajectory, and MPL separated from the booster 42 minutes after launch. One day earlier it appeared likely that weather would delay the launch, as clouds and rain were forecast for launch time. However, the cold front associated with the poor weather passed through earlier in the day. MPL is scheduled to land in the south polar regions of Mars, near the southern ice cap, in December 1999. The spacecraft will be the fourth to land on Mars and the first to land in the polar regions. The science performed by the spacecraft will focus on climate and water. An instrument package known as the Mars Volatiles and Climate Surveyor (MVACS) will characterize the geology and atmosphere of the landing site and take samples of the soil around the lander to look for evidence of water. Other instruments on MPL include a laser "sounder" that will detect and study atmospheric clouds and hazes, a descent imager that will take pictures while the spacecraft is landing, and a microphone supplied by the Planetary Society that will be the first effort to listen to any noises caused by the wind or other phenomena on the Red Planet. Hitchhiking their way to Mars on MPL are the two microprobes of the Deep Space 2 mission. The two probes will separate from the main spacecraft shortly before arriving at Mars, and crash into the planet. The probes will then burrow up to two meters (6.6 feet) into the surface, while a radio transmitter remains on the surface. The probes, designed to last on battery power just 1-3 days, will search for subsurface water and transfer that data to the radio transmitter on the surface. The transmitter will then relay the data to the orbiting Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft for transmission to Earth. Mars Polar Lander is the second of two NASA Mars missions to be launched in the current Earth-Mars launch window, which opens only every 26 months. Mars Climate Orbiter lifted off December 11 and will arrive at the Red Planet in September. NEAR Engine Burn Completed The Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) spacecraft successfully completed a thruster firing Sunday, January 3, that will put the spacecraft on course for a February 2000 rendezvous with the asteroid Eros. NEAR's main bipropellant engine fired for 24 minutes starting around 12 pm EST (1700 UT). NEAR project officials said that preliminary reports indicate that the engine burn was a success. The accuracy of the burn will be confirmed by NASA's Deep Space Network within the next day. Engineers will then plan any small thruster firings needed in the next 1-2 weeks to correct any deviations from the intended trajectory. The engine firing increased the spacecraft's speed by 3,380 km/hr (2,100 mph) so that NEAR can catch back up with the faster-moving Eros. Eros passed by the spacecraft December 23 and is now 910,100 km (565,650 mi.) from NEAR. The thruster burn will place NEAR into an orbit that will allow it to rendezvous again with Eros in February 2000, 13 months later than originally planned. An aborted thruster firing on December 20 prevented NEAR from going into orbit around Eros as planned this month. Mission officials still believe NEAR will be able to complete all its science objectives. In addition, data collected during the December 23 flyby will provide basic information about the asteroid useful later in the mission. "The abort lost us time but the flyby gave us valuable information about Eros' shape and mass that we wouldn't have had -- information that will help us during our orbital phase a little more than a year from now," NEAR project manager Thomas Coughlin said. Funding Problems Delay Kistler Plans Funding problems related to the Asian economic crisis have delayed Kistler Aerospace's plans to build an Australian launch site and test its reusable launch vehicle, company and Australian officials said Monday, January 4. In an article in the Tuesday, January 5 issue of the Adelaide newspaper The Advertiser, Kistler officials said no major construction work has been done on a planned spaceport in Woomera in the state of South Australia since a ceremonial groundbreaking in July. Company spokesman Roger Henning told The Advertiser that difficulties raising funds from investors in Asia, major backers of the company, is to blame for the delays. "Anybody doing business with Asia is in the same position," he said, adding that funds are "slow coming through, but that doesn't mean they won't come through." Kistler has hoped to complete the launch facility by the end of 1998 and hold its first test launch of its K-1 reusable launch vehicle in early 1999. But company officials now say it's unlikely any launch will occur before 2000. The news is a blow to South Australian officials, who had hoped Kistler would help revitalize Woomera, a former missile test site that also hosted a few space launches. Rob Kerin, acting premier of South Australia, told The Advertiser that he plans to meet with Kistler officials later this month to discuss the status of the launch site and is "very confident" the project will proceed. Kerin said the state government had pledged an undisclosed amount of government money to help build the spaceport, but those funds would not be released until the project began. The launch site project is estimated to cost about A$73 million (US$45 million). Kistler plans to use the Woomera site for its K-1 rocket, a two-stage unmanned reusable launch vehicle currently under development. The K-1 will be able to place up to 5,000 kg (11,000 lbs.) into low Earth orbit. The company, with offices in Washington state and California, also plans to develop a launch site in Nevada. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 8 January 1999 [2/5] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... Arianespace Considers Launching Soyuz Rockets The French aerospace company Arianespace is considering launching Russian Soyuz rockets along with its popular Ariane boosters, the head of the company said Wednesday, January 6. At a year-opening breakfast meeting January 6, Arianespace chairman and CEO Jean-Marie Luton said the company is investigating the possibility of launching Soyuz rockets from its launch site in Kourou, French Guiana. Discussion is still in preliminary stages, Luton said. It would cost between $100 and $300 million to modify a launch site at Kourou for the Soyuz, and take at least two years, he said. Arianespace is currently a partner in Starsem, a company that markets the Soyuz booster to Western markets. Starsem's partners include the French company Aerospatiale, the Russian Space Agency, and Russia's Samara Space Center. Starsem's customers include Globalstar and the European Space Agency, who plans to launch its Cluster II solar science satellites on Soyuz. The Soyuz would allow Arianespace to gain a larger share of the growing market for low-Earth orbit (LEO) communications launches like Globalstar. Its Ariane 4 and 5 boosters hold a large share of the market for geostationary orbit satellites but have yet to play a role in the LEO market. Launching Soyuz rockets from Kourou could also alleviate problems launching from Russia. The first Starsem launch of Globalstar satellites has reportedly been delayed while American and Russian officials work out revised launch agreements between the two countries that permit the launch of Western payloads on Russian boosters. Despite its interest in the Soyuz, Arianespace continues to emphasize its Ariane 4 and 5 boosters. Luton said 13 or 14 launches are planned for the company in 1999, including the first three commercial Ariane 5 launches. the first of the Ariane 5 launches is scheduled for this spring, carrying the Eutelsat W4 and Indonesian Telekom 1 satellites into geostationary orbit. Luton said the company plans to increase the capacity of the Ariane 5 to dealing with the growing sizes of GEO comsats. The capacity of the Ariane 5 will grow to 6,500 kg (14,300 lbs.) in 2001 and eventually to 11,000 kg (24,200 lbs.) in 2005-2006. The company had profits of about 10 million euros ($11.7 million) on revenue of 1.07 billion euros ($1.25 billion), Luton said. Galaxy Collisions More Common Than Once Thought Collisions between galaxies may be more common that previously thought and may play a key role in shaping the universe, astronomers reported Wednesday, January 6. Iowa State University astronomer Russ Lavery reported that he and colleagues, studying archived images from the Hubble Space Telescope, found far more ring galaxies -- products of galaxy collisions -- than expected. "We have looked at about 100 Hubble images and we expected to find maybe one ring galaxy among them," said Lavery, speaking at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Austin, Texas. "Instead we've identified 20 ring galaxies." Lavery said the ring galaxies were spread out randomly in space, with more seen at greater distances, and hence earlier times in the history of the universe. This suggests to Lavery that "collisional galaxies have played a major role in determining the types of galaxies we observe around us today." The increased rate of galaxy collisions evidence from the Hubble data may explain the abundance of another kind of galaxy, elliptical galaxies. These galaxies are thought to form from the merger of two other galaxies. Lavery said that if galaxy collisions were more commonplace than once thought, then mergers should also be more common, helping to explain the number of elliptical galaxies seen by astronomers. Lavery plans to examine about 500 more Hubble images to obtain a representative survey of the entire sky. The high resolution of the Hubble is required for this survey because many of the distant ring galaxies are too small to be resolves as such using groundbased telescopes. Superflares May Rock Sun-like Stars Stars like the Sun, but likely not the Sun itself, may generate massive "superflares" that could threaten life on orbiting planets, astronomers reported Wednesday, January 6. Astronomers form Yale University, Indiana University, and the Space Telescope Science Institute reported evidence that nine Sun-like stars have generated massive solar flares 100 to 10 million times more powerful than a typical solar flare. Such a flare would be powerful enough to burn out all orbiting satellites and generate aurorae visible all the way to the Earth's equator, according to Yale astrophysicist Bradley Schaefer. "But the primary damage would come from high energy radiation, which would react in the Earth's upper atmosphere to destroy the protective ozone layer for several years, thereby exposing the Earth's surface to harmful ultraviolet radiation with subsequent collapse of the food chain." Such superflares occur about one a century on some Sun-like stars, according to evidence collected by Schaefer and colleagues. However, the Sun is not thought to be among those stars that generate superflares. That may be due to the method by which superflares are thought to be generated, according to Yale's Eric Rubenstein. He believes the interaction between the magnetic fields of a star and a closely-orbiting Jovian planet could generate the powerful superflares. "A similar process would be a physical system composed of, say, rubber bands twisted together," Rubenstein said. "When the elastic bands are released, they suddenly snap and fly off. The energy is released and channeled into propelling the rubber bands instead of producing light." In our solar system, Jupiter orbits too far from the Sun to interact in such a way, and the magnetic fields of the inner planets are far too weak to generate superflares. While none of the stars observed to generate superflares have close planetary or stellar companions, Jupiter-sized planets have been discovered in very close orbits around other Sun-like worlds. Such stars would be likely candidates for superflare activity, Rubenstein and Schaefer believe. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 8 January 1999 [3/5] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... New Evidence for Small Comets Published The leading proponent of the theory that thousands of house-sized comets strike the Earth each day has published new data which he claims supports his theory. Louis Frank, a space physicist at the University of Iowa, published new data from the Polar spacecraft in the January 1 issue of the Journal of Geophysical Research (JGR) that shows that instrumental errors are not the cause of the "atmospheric holes" Frank believes are created by small comets impacting the Earth's atmosphere. "What critics of the small comet theory were analyzing was instrument noise," Frank said. "If you strip away the noise from the data, as they properly should have done, what remains clearly validates the reality of atmospheric holes." Using an "automated mathematical formula" to filter out instrument noise, Frank and colleague John Sigwarth found that the holes increased in size and frequency when observed at lower altitudes in Polar's elliptical orbit around the Earth and vary in number based on the time of day and the season. Frank believes the holes, so named because of their dark appearance in ultraviolet images of the Earth, are water vapor clouds caused by the disintegration of small comets about 3-6 meters (20-30 feet) in diameter in the Earth's upper atmosphere. The Polar spacecraft has also returned images of bright trails at ultraviolet and visible wavelengths thought to be caused by the emission of oxygen and hydroxyl (OH) ions from these comets. "Our most recent paper is the only comprehensive paper on this topic and shows, without reasonable doubt, that the atmospheric holes are indeed a real phenomenon," Frank said. However, much of the scientific community, already critical of Frank's work, may be unconvinced by this latest work. Many of the results in the JGR paper were presented by Frank at the spring meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) in Boston in May 1998, and were sharply criticized by other scientists in attendance. In addition, a number of other papers published in the last year have attacked the small comet theory on a number of fronts, from problems with the instrument to the lack of other observations of small comet impacts on the Earth or Moon. Frank has promoted the small comet theory since 1986, based on similar data from the Dynamics Explorer 1 satellite. He first presented results from the Polar spacecraft at the spring 1997 AGU meeting. SpaceViews Event Horizon January 14 Delta 2 launch of the Argos, Sunsat, and Oersted satellites from Vandenberg AFB, California, at 5:58 am EST (1058 UT) January 26 Athena 1 launch of the ROCSAT-1 satellite from Cape Canavewral, Florida, at 7:34 pm EST (0034 UT Jan. 27) January 30 Proton launch of the Telstar-6 communications satellite from Baikonur, Kazakhstan. Other News: Extended Mir Stay: Russian cosmonaut Sergei Avdeyev will likely spend an extra three months on Mir, Reuters reported January 5. Avdeyev will remain on Mir because the next crew to come to Mir, scheduled for launch in February or March, will including two guest cosmonauts, leaving room on the Soyuz capsule for only one replacement cosmonaut. Avdeyev and new cosmonaut Viktor Afanasyev would remain on Mir until the middle of the year, when the station is scheduled to reenter the Earth's atmosphere, pending any decision to extend Mir's life. Ghost Galaxies and Dark Matter: New evidence suggests that the universe may be filled with small "ghost" galaxies that may partially explain the missing matter problem. These galaxies have few bright stars, but are thought, based on studies of the distribution and motion of the visible stars, to contain many more dwarf stars too dim to be seen. Such ghost galaxies "may outnumber all of the luminous galaxies combined" according to John Kormendy of the University of Hawaii and may thus account for "a significant portion" of the universe's missing matter. Launch Study: The launch sites at Cape Canaveral, Florida, will need to be operated more like an airport and take into account the needs of commercial operators if they are to maintain a significant share of the global launch market, an independent study published in the January 7 issue of the newspaper Florida Today reported. The study concluded that many private companies feel they take a back seat to NASA and Defense Department launches from the Cape. The study suggested streamlining and modernizing procedures to increase launch rates and flexibility for commercial operators. Mars Movie: A TV movie about the first private human mission to Mars is being prepared, Variety reported January 6. "The Martian Race" is being written by Gregory Benford (author of "Cosm" and "In the Ocean of Night", among other books) and Michael Cassutt (author of "Missing Man"). Production company Mandalay Television Pictures said no network deal has yet been reached, but the company hopes to have the movie ready by December, when the Mars Polar Lander touches down on the Red Planet. The producers and writers plan "scrupulous scientific accuracy" for the movie, including working with NASA's Mars Exploration Office. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 8 January 1999 [4/5] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... *** Book Reviews *** by Jeff Foust Probability 1: Why There Must Be Intelligent Life in the Universe by Amir D. Aczel Harcourt Brace, 1998 hardcover, 230pp., illus. ISBN 0-15-100376-9 US$22/C$31 The Drake Equation -- the estimate of the number of worlds with intelligent life capable of communication in the galaxy, based on factors ranging from the number of stars in the galaxy to the estimated lifetime of an intelligent species -- has been the subject of debate for decades. Scientists and others have manipulated the equation to show that intelligent life must either be commonplace or nonexistent, depending on their beliefs. However, even the most pessimistic Drake Equation calculations show that intelligent life must exist elsewhere in the universe, according to Amir Aczel's book "Probability 1" The title of the book comes from Aczel's surprisingly simple statistical calculations using probabilities from the Drake Equation, and require only a couple of pages of text and a single equation near the end of the book. The rest of the book leads up to this calculation by providing background on the Drake Equation, studies of extrasolar planets and SETI searches, and a host of other issues. Aczel, a mathematics professor, also includes a primer on statistics relevant to the book. While much of the background material will be old hat for those already familiar with the field, and is not otherwise distinctive, his conclusions are novel but are firmly rooted in his analysis. For anyone looking for new evidence that we are almost certainly not alone in the universe, "Probability 1" will be an excellent read. Genesis: The Story of Apollo 8 by Robert Zimmerman Four Walls Eight Windows, 1998 hardcover, 300pp., illus. ISBN 1-56858-118-1 US$25.95 It was just over 30 years ago that humans broke free of the Earth's gravity for the first time, as the three-man crew of Apollo 8 orbited the Moon on Christmas, 1968. That accomplishment was huge at the time, but today is forgotten by the later success of Apollo 11 or the drama of Apollo 13. Robert Zimmerman refreshes our memories with a detailed account of the mission in "Genesis". Zimmerman weaves several threads throughout the book. The primary story, of course, is a detailed account of the mission itself, from launch to splashdown. Zimmerman provides extensive coverage of the mission, including Frank Borman's illness and the debate over who took the famous "Earthrise" photo while they orbited the Moon. The book also discusses how the astronauts' wives and other family members handled the stresses of the mission. Zimmerman breaks off from the mission narrative to go into several other areas. Some, like the biographies of the astronauts and the history of the Space Race to that point, make sense. However, other threads, including a history of the Berlin Wall and the tale of a Vietnam helicopter pilot, seem disconnected from the main story line. They're obviously an effort to discuss the Cold War tensions and societal unrest of 1968, but don't fit together with the rest of book. However, if one ignores those problems and focuses on the core of the book, the reader will find a detailed, compelling account of the first manned mission to orbit the Moon. Cosmic Adventure: A Renegade Astronomer's Guide to Our World and Beyond by Bob Berman William Morrow, 1998 hardcover, 255pp., illus. ISBN 0-688-14495-0 US$25/C$34 As the title suggests, Bob Berman takes an adventurous and somewhat offbeat look at astronomy, the universe, and sundry topics in "Cosmic Adventure". The book is a collection of essays on various topics that are about or tied to astronomy in various degrees, from the astronomy one can do from an airplane window seat to the gases that make up our and other planetary atmospheres. Berman calls upon his own eclectic pursuits, from building his own home to motorcycling across Asia for three years, to liven up his essays. While sometimes his essays seem to stray a little too far off topic, they are overall an enjoyable and engaging read. *** NSS News *** Upcoming Boston NSS Events Thursday, January 14, 7:30 pm Discuss the top space events of all time in a special roundtable discussion. What's the most important space event of 1998? Of the 1990s? Of the Space Age? Share your thoughts and ideas with others at this special meeting. [Note: The talk on fractal antennae and space applications scheduled for January will be rescheduled for February or a later date.] Unless otherwise specified, Boston NSS Meetings are held on the first Thursdays of every month at 545 Main Street (Technology Square), 8th floor, Cambridge, near the Kendall/MIT stop on the Red Line. Free parking is available. check the Boston NSS Web site (http://www.spaceviews.com/boston/) for more information about these upcoming speakers. Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=
    Дата: 11 января 1999 (1999-01-11) От: Alexander Bondugin Тема: SpaceViews - 8 January 1999 [5/5] Привет всем! Вот, свалилось из Internet... Boston NSS December Meeting Summary by Lynn Olson Frank White has recently brought out a second edition of his book, The Overview Effect, which discusses the change in human consciousness produced by going out into space. For the December meeting of the Boston Chapter of the National Space Society he discussed the changes that have occurred between the two editions. What has changed from 1987 to 1998. White was surprised and encouraged at the changes in this relatively short time. Then, there had been 25 successful shuttle flights and no flights for two years. Now there have been over 100 flights. Then, there was a commitment to a space station which was almost totally a US project. Now the station is very international, with the Russians heavily involved. Will the putting in place of the second piece of the space station (tomorrow) be one of the significant dates in history? Then, the first civilian in space had died on the Challenger and it was proclaimed that space was no place for ordinary people. Now John Glenn has flown in space again at the age of 77 and Barbara Morgan, backup "Teacher in Space" has been taken into the astronaut program, a decision announced the same day as the Glenn decision. Then, Glenn's first orbital flight was a distant memory. Now, Glenn's second flight took place as the second edition of the book came out. Then, space exploration as the creation of a planetary civilization was considered far out. Now it is accepted. Getting excited in a spiritual "soft" way about space was only beginning to be accepted. Now it is quite accepted. Then the report from the Commission on Space was not treated seriously. Now the ideas in it are mainstream. The challenge now for the space movement is to be seen as a movement. The media is still covering space as a program, a government project, rather than a movement propelled by people. The civil rights struggle in the sixties was covered by the media as a movement. Two differences with the were charismatic leadership (Martin Luther King) and the struggle between good and evil. Astronaut Bonnie Dunbar has said, "I am doing this [space] because I am following my heart." This spirit is essential to forming a movement. This has been the January 8, 1999, issue of SpaceViews. SpaceViews is also available on the World Wide web from the SpaceViews home page: http://www.spaceviews.com/ or via anonymous FTP from ftp.seds.org: ftp://ftp.seds.org/pub/info/newsletters/spaceviews/text/990108.txt To unsubscribe from SpaceViews, send mail to: majordomo@spaceviews.com In the body (not subject) of the message, type: unsubscribe spaceviews For editorial questions and article submissions for SpaceViews, contact the editor, Jeff Foust, at jeff@spaceviews.com. For questions about the SpaceViews mailing list, please contact spaceviews-approval@spaceviews.com. ____ | "SpaceViews" (tm) -by Boston Chapter // \ // | of the National Space Society (NSS) // (O) // | Dedicated to the establishment // \___// | of a spacefaring civilization. - To NOT receive future newsletters, send this message to our NEW address: - To: majordomo@SpaceViews.com - Subject: anything - unsubscribe SpaceViews - E-Mail List services provided by Northern Winds: www.nw.net - SpaceViews (tm) is published for the National Space Society (NSS), - copyright (C) Boston Chapter of National Space Society - www.spaceviews.com www.nss.org (jeff@spaceviews.com) Hа сегодня все, пока! =SANA=

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