Hubble Rescued

NASA announced plans today to return to the Hubble Space Telescope in 2008 (the fifth servicing mission thus far) to replace the observatory’s gyroscopes and batteries, install two new instruments: the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) and Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3), and attempt to repair the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) which has been offline for two years.

The servicing mission should extend Hubble’s orbital lifetime to at least 2013, by which time Nasa will be getting close to launching a successor: the James Webb Space Telescope.

Dr Griffin’s decision reverses that of his predecessor, Sean O’Keefe, who cancelled the planned visit in the wake of the Columbia shuttle disaster in 2003.

Update:

Hubble Rescued

NASA announced plans today to return to the Hubble Space Telescope in 2008 (the fifth servicing mission thus far) to replace the observatory’s gyroscopes and batteries, install two new instruments: the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) and Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3), and attempt to repair the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) which has been offline for two years.

The servicing mission should extend Hubble’s orbital lifetime to at least 2013, by which time Nasa will be getting close to launching a successor: the James Webb Space Telescope.

Dr Griffin’s decision reverses that of his predecessor, Sean O’Keefe, who cancelled the planned visit in the wake of the Columbia shuttle disaster in 2003.

Update:

The United Stats of America

This month’s TIME magazine takes a look at “The United Stats of America” in the wake of the national population passing 300 million on October 17th. Their website has some interesting maps, graphs and infographics.

The United Stats of America

This month’s TIME magazine takes a look at “The United Stats of America” in the wake of the national population passing 300 million on October 17th. Their website has some interesting maps, graphs and infographics.

Still Life

In most Victorian post-mortem photography, the deceased was shown peacefully sleeping. In deaths involving children, post-mortem photography was especially precious since little or no pictures were taken before their death. (..) Most pictures were thought to be a keepsake rather than an alarming reminder of short mortality.

Recommended listening: J.S.B in a minor key, specifically BWV 565 and 538.

Happy Samhuinn.

Still Life

In most Victorian post-mortem photography, the deceased was shown peacefully sleeping. In deaths involving children, post-mortem photography was especially precious since little or no pictures were taken before their death. (..) Most pictures were thought to be a keepsake rather than an alarming reminder of short mortality.

Recommended listening: J.S.B in a minor key, specifically BWV 565 and 538.

Happy Samhuinn.

Whitney Music Box Variations

The Whitney Music Box, a procedural music visualization derived from work by John Whitney, has been updated to include a number of variations on the original. I especially like variations 4, 6 and 16. Variation 17 lets you spin a simplified version manually.

Previously: Whitney Music Box

Whitney Music Box Variations

The Whitney Music Box, a procedural music visualization derived from work by John Whitney, has been updated to include a number of variations on the original. I especially like variations 4, 6 and 16. Variation 17 lets you spin a simplified version manually.

Previously: Whitney Music Box

Spirit Contemplative in Old Age

For a crippled extraterrestrial rover past its prime*, the Martian winter is cold and unforgiving. Tucked away on a small hill with a view of the sun for the past four months, Mars Exploration Rover Spirit has been making do, using available solar energy to work on, among other things, the most detailed photograph of the Martian surface to date. The following panorama was acquired using all 13 color filters on the rover’s Pancam and a minimal amount of compression. The end result is a composite of 1,449 images and nearly 500 megabytes of raw data.

* today marks the 1,000th sol of what was originally a 90-sol mission

Spirit Contemplative in Old Age

For a crippled extraterrestrial rover past its prime*, the Martian winter is cold and unforgiving. Tucked away on a small hill with a view of the sun for the past four months, Mars Exploration Rover Spirit has been making do, using available solar energy to work on, among other things, the most detailed photograph of the Martian surface to date. The following panorama was acquired using all 13 color filters on the rover’s Pancam and a minimal amount of compression. The end result is a composite of 1,449 images and nearly 500 megabytes of raw data.

* today marks the 1,000th sol of what was originally a 90-sol mission