Posts Tagged ‘aircraft’

19 August

Space X’s Dragon Successfully Completed the Delivery Mission!

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

This is a repost from one of our sister publications, Windermere Sun.

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Space X’s CRS-12 Mission (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Space X’s CRS-12 Mission (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Space X’s CRS-12 Mission (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Space X’s CRS-12 Mission (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Space X’s CRS-12 Mission (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Space X’s CRS-12 Mission (presented at WindermereSun.com)

 

Space X’s CRS-12 Mission (presented at WindermereSun.com)

Windermere Blue Sunset (credit: Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker)

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As I’ve promised some of our readers, I will try to cover as much of the Space X launches, as often as possible!

For those of you who are not as familiar with Space X, Space X designs, manufacturers and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft. It was founded in 2002 to revolutionize space technology by Elon Musk, with the ultimate goal of enabling human/earthlings to live on other planets.

For my solar and sustainable living friends, yes, I believe one of the components of sustainability of earthlings is space exploration. So, I also have friends and readers from this area and intend to also cover news and information about our space travel, space technology, and inter-galatic intrigues.Space X launched the delivery mission on Monday, August 14, 2017, on a Falcon 9 rocket. The CRS-12 Dragon spacecraft was launched by a Falcon 9 rocket from Launch Complex 39A (LC-39A) at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on Monday, August 14, 2017, at 12:31 EDT (16:31 UTC). The mission is sending a robotic Dragon cargo capsule on its way to the International Space Station (ISS) for NASA.

About eight minutes after the launch, the first stage of the two-stage Falcon 9 came back to earth, touching down at Space X’s “Landing Zone 1” at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, sitting next door to Kennedy Space Center.

On Wednesday, August 16, 2017, at 6:52 am EDT (10:52 UTC), the uncrewed Dragon Spacecraft was captured by astronauts using International Space Station’s robotic arm-Canadarm2, as the two spacecraft were flying over the Pacific Ocean, just north of New Zealand. The Dragon cargo ship was filled with more than 6,400 lbs (2,900 kg) of supplies, science experiments and food and yes ice cream for the space station’s Expedition 52 crew. After the successful delivery and receiving the “Congratulations on a job well done,” message from astronaut Andreas Morgenson of the European Space Agency being radioed to the station’s crew from NASA’s Mission Control in Houston.Below, U.S. Commercial Cargo Craft (Dragon Spacecraft) arrives at the International Space Station:

Video was taken back in 2012, of the Hatch Opening Between Dragon & ISS (International Space Station), below:

Space X so far has 14 such rocket landings and the company has reflown two landed boosters to date. It is the goal of the company and Elon Musk to develop fully and rapidly reusable systems in order to dramatically reduce the cost of space exploration.

For a view of the International Space Station and how it works, here is a HD documentary of tour inside the International Space Station (ISS) shown by NASA Astronaut Sunita (Suni) Williams. She describes how the station is divided into two pressurized modules, floating to each as she demonstrates scientific instruments, brushes teeth, drinks water and using the bathroom, all in zero gravity. Sunita “Suni” Williams is an American astronaut of Indian-Slovenian descent holding several spacewalking records by a woman, below:

If you think this is pretty cool, enjoy exploring, and like math and sciences, you may like to consider becoming an astronaut some day and/or join the Planetary Society or at Planetary Society!
Gathered, written, and posted by Windermere Sun-Susan Sun Nunamaker

~have a bright and sunny day~

Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
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22 July

Aquila, Solar Powered Internet Service Providing Aircraft

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Dear Friends, Visitors/Viewers/Readers,

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Wow, truly, we are at the final frontier! Facebook has just announced the first successful test flight of a high-altitude solar plane to bring internet access to remote parts of the world (where 1.6 billion people reside) currently without mobile broadband network. Back in March of 2015, Mark Zuckerberg revealed that Facebook had been testing drones in the skies over UK. The Aquila drone has the wingspan of an airliner, weighs about a third as much as a car, and consumes only 5,000 watts (equivalent to 3 hairdryers or a powerful microwave ) when cruising. It was developed in Bridgwater, Somerset, by Ascenta, a designer of solar powered drones that Facebook bought in March of 2014. Facebook plans on having Aquila as a fleet of solar powered aircraft that will provide internet to people in sub-Saharan Africa and other remote regions currently without online access. Once they are fully operational, these high altitude planes will stay airborne for up to 90 days at a time and beam broadband coverage to a 60-mile wide area on the ground, availing internet to people in under-connected regions.


After months of flying scale models, the Facebook Connectivity Lab finally completed first full-scale test flight and provided much data on Aquila’s performance on autopilot, batteries, motors, radio, displays, ground station, aerodynamic handling, structural viability, and crew training. The low altitude test flight lasted for 96 minutes (more than three times the originally planned mission length).


Some of the future challenges will need to be faced are:

  1. During the winter, solar panels need to collect sufficient energy during short days to keep the batteries charged over long nights (up to 14 hours at a time).
  2. Higher energy efficiency and lower mass battery systems continue to be needed
  3. Aquila continues to be optimized
  4. Overall need to reduce the cost in order to insure that the project would be viable.

Jay Parikh, Facebook’s head of engineering and infrastructure, said in a blog: “We’re encouraged by this first successful flight, but we have a lot of work ahead of us … In our next tests, we will fly Aquila faster, higher and longer, eventually taking it above 60,000 feet.”

 

~have a bright and sunny day~

Any comments, suggestions, concerns regarding this post will be welcomed at sunisthefuture@gmail.com

Gathered, written, and posted by sunisthefuture-Susan Sun Nunamaker
Please also get into the habit of checking at these sites below for more on solar energy topics:

www.sunisthefuture.net

www.kiva.org/team/sunisthefuture

www.facebook.com/sunisthefuture

www.pinterest.com/sunisthefuture

www.youtube.com/user/sunisthefuture

www.cafepress.com/sunisthefuture

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