caffienekitty: (ooo!)
"10 Minutes at Nubble Light House" by Hank Green of YouTube is lovely and relaxing. It's just a sunset, a lighthouse, and gentle waves.

caffienekitty: (like omg!!)
NASA has compiled a 'highlight reel' from the Solar Dynamics Observatory out of 5 years of recordings made while orbiting the Sun, made at various wavelengths. And set it to music. And, just... damn.



ETA: Well they posted it on the 5th anniversary nearly a year ago, but still, wow.
caffienekitty: (like omg!!)
NASA has compiled a 'highlight reel' from the Solar Dynamics Observatory out of 5 years of recordings made while orbiting the Sun, made at various wavelengths. And set it to music. And, just... damn.



ETA: Well they posted it on the 5th anniversary nearly a year ago, but still, wow.
caffienekitty: (yay)
I don't remember if I posted about it when it happened, but the European Space Agency landed a probe (Philae) on a comet back last November, which was amazing considering it was like throwing a pea from Paris and landing it in the eye of the Statue of Liberty or something. However, due to some difficulties on landing it bounced into a shady spot where it could not receive solar power to recharge and had to go into hibernation, losing contact with the ESA. While it was on though, it got all the main science things they were hoping to get done done so it was a roaring success at the time but still, it landed and within a few days lost power and went to sleep.

The satellite it came from (Rosetta) which is still orbiting the 67P comet and (sending back pictures as the comet starts to change as it approaches the Sun) has been looking for the landing spot for months without much luck (try spotting a washing machine tucked into a shady nook somewhere in an area the size of Los Angeles when you're flying several kilometers above it and can't hover) and there's been a kind of heartwarming/wrenching #WakeUpPhilae twitter campaign going on, and school classes making models and kids having Comet Lander themed birthday cakes and so on. The ESA has cute anthropomorphized cartoon versions of the satellite and lander, each with their own Twitter feed and a narrative storyline about them which has definitely helped boost and maintain interest in the mission. XKDC's live comic coverage of the landing didn't hurt either.

To be honest, I figured it had already been a successful mission and that the little probe would likely never be heard from again. Space is big, comets are tiny, space probes are tinier and the universe is under no obligation to enable all real world events to have a satisfactory narrative arc. And that that was fine, even though it would be nice if it woke up and could do some bonus science and make a whole lot of people on Twitter happy.

Today it woke up.

And I am surprisingly emotional about it! It's like a happy ending! \o/

Philae has already sent back more data and will send back more when the satellite is in correct position to relay data to the ESA. Here's a news article outlining what's going on.

There are a lot of really excited scientists in Europe right now, and a lot of happy people on Twitter. And me. YAY! \o/
caffienekitty: (yay)
I don't remember if I posted about it when it happened, but the European Space Agency landed a probe (Philae) on a comet back last November, which was amazing considering it was like throwing a pea from Paris and landing it in the eye of the Statue of Liberty or something. However, due to some difficulties on landing it bounced into a shady spot where it could not receive solar power to recharge and had to go into hibernation, losing contact with the ESA. While it was on though, it got all the main science things they were hoping to get done done so it was a roaring success at the time but still, it landed and within a few days lost power and went to sleep.

The satellite it came from (Rosetta) which is still orbiting the 67P comet and (sending back pictures as the comet starts to change as it approaches the Sun) has been looking for the landing spot for months without much luck (try spotting a washing machine tucked into a shady nook somewhere in an area the size of Los Angeles when you're flying several kilometers above it and can't hover) and there's been a kind of heartwarming/wrenching #WakeUpPhilae twitter campaign going on, and school classes making models and kids having Comet Lander themed birthday cakes and so on. The ESA has cute anthropomorphized cartoon versions of the satellite and lander, each with their own Twitter feed and a narrative storyline about them which has definitely helped boost and maintain interest in the mission. XKDC's live comic coverage of the landing didn't hurt either.

To be honest, I figured it had already been a successful mission and that the little probe would likely never be heard from again. Space is big, comets are tiny, space probes are tinier and the universe is under no obligation to enable all real world events to have a satisfactory narrative arc. And that that was fine, even though it would be nice if it woke up and could do some bonus science and make a whole lot of people on Twitter happy.

Today it woke up.

And I am surprisingly emotional about it! It's like a happy ending! \o/

Philae has already sent back more data and will send back more when the satellite is in correct position to relay data to the ESA. Here's a news article outlining what's going on.

There are a lot of really excited scientists in Europe right now, and a lot of happy people on Twitter. And me. YAY! \o/
caffienekitty: Dean sitting slumped in a chair. "Will kill for coffee" (amazing)
Ever wonder what it was like to be a rocket booster for the Space Shuttle? Well, apparently NASA put some darn sturdy little cameras on them for a few flights and compiled that into a video. This is footage (with sound!) of a Shuttle lift off, rocket booster separation and splashdown, from the boosters' perspective. Amazing and beautiful.

caffienekitty: Dean sitting slumped in a chair. "Will kill for coffee" (amazing)
I'm currently watching (while doing misc cleaning etc) what is essentially two guys installing a refrigeration unit. On the space station.

Further Details )

The unscheduled sort-of-emergency spacewalk is currently streaming live at NASA TV for anyone else interested in watching.
caffienekitty: (like omg!!)
The students at NASA's Jet Propulsion Labs at Johnson Space Center have made the most awesome and badass Gangnam Style parody ever. Ever. It has actual astronauts (and a fake one) and space scientists and engineers and NASA Administrators in it. Dancing. Plus it's kind of educational.

Embedded video under cut )

The full lyrics are at the video's YouTube page.

A big thank you hug to [livejournal.com profile] lurkingwombat for sending me the link.
caffienekitty: (ooo!)
So, in about 9 hours. NASA's landing a new rover, Curiosity, on Mars, and everyone is invited to watch.






Aside from the awesome "How to get a Rover to automatically land itself on Mars in several steps that could go wrong several different ways and we won't even know for fourteen minutes when the signal gets here whether it worked or not, with bonus music from Inception" video, for this landing there is a live public-accessible video feed of the landing planned, broadcasting the landing as it happens (or rather 14 minutes after it happened, but still at the same time as NASA gets it), with a Q and A webchat and suchlike apparently which to me is SO AWESOME. Even though I suspect their servers will be overloaded, and I can't watch it anyway because my system isn't up to letting me access it, I thought I should pass the word along.

I'm hoping the landing is a success of course, but the planned live feed of something landing on Mars reminds me of Doctor Who, that bit in Christmas Invasion where they broadcast the feed from the Guinevere probe live.

Announcer: Let's see what images the probe is sending back from Mars. Kind of blurry...
Sycorax: GRR! ARGH!
Humanity: *freaks out*

Anyway. Fairly sure that won't be happening today.

The links to the live video stream which will start in a few hours (and some other things, like the Twitter feed and a simulation of the landing you can play around with) are available at the NASA Mars Science Lab: Participate page.


ETA:
Curiosity landed safely and started sending back pictures almost right away, and a room full of techs and geeks and engineers went completely bananas. They were jumping up and down, there was a lot of crying, and the hugging was epic. WOO! \o/

Honorable Mention - Hairstyle: Twenty-something tech with the multicolored mohawk and the yellow stars painted onto the sides, you rock.
caffienekitty: (ooo!)
So, in about 9 hours. NASA's landing a new rover, Curiosity, on Mars, and everyone is invited to watch.






Aside from the awesome "How to get a Rover to automatically land itself on Mars in several steps that could go wrong several different ways and we won't even know for fourteen minutes when the signal gets here whether it worked or not, with bonus music from Inception" video, for this landing there is a live public-accessible video feed of the landing planned, broadcasting the landing as it happens (or rather 14 minutes after it happened, but still at the same time as NASA gets it), with a Q and A webchat and suchlike apparently which to me is SO AWESOME. Even though I suspect their servers will be overloaded, and I can't watch it anyway because my system isn't up to letting me access it, I thought I should pass the word along.

I'm hoping the landing is a success of course, but the planned live feed of something landing on Mars reminds me of Doctor Who, that bit in Christmas Invasion where they broadcast the feed from the Guinevere probe live.

Announcer: Let's see what images the probe is sending back from Mars. Kind of blurry...
Sycorax: GRR! ARGH!
Humanity: *freaks out*

Anyway. Fairly sure that won't be happening today.

The links to the live video stream which will start in a few hours (and some other things, like the Twitter feed and a simulation of the landing you can play around with) are available at the NASA Mars Science Lab: Participate page.


ETA:
Curiosity landed safely and started sending back pictures almost right away, and a room full of techs and geeks and engineers went completely bananas. They were jumping up and down, there was a lot of crying, and the hugging was epic. WOO! \o/

Honorable Mention - Hairstyle: Twenty-something tech with the multicolored mohawk and the yellow stars painted onto the sides, you rock.
caffienekitty: (ooo!)
So I hear quantum physics and the Large Hadron Collider at CERN had a busy day yesterday? Also, Stephen Hawking lost a bet.

And here's a video about the thing the fuss is all about, as explained by the wonderfully named Ian Sample (who I once erroneously assumed was a filler put in by the BBC props department) using ping pong balls and sugar.
caffienekitty: (ooo!)
So I hear quantum physics and the Large Hadron Collider at CERN had a busy day yesterday? Also, Stephen Hawking lost a bet.

And here's a video about the thing the fuss is all about, as explained by the wonderfully named Ian Sample (who I once erroneously assumed was a filler put in by the BBC props department) using ping pong balls and sugar.
caffienekitty: (giggle)
Co-worker's spouse to her small visiting grandchild: And what are the names of Santa's reindeer, honey?

Small grandchild: Rudolph.... and Cheeto.... and FALCOR!

Me: \o/

Why the heck not? :-D
caffienekitty: (giggle)
Co-worker's spouse to her small visiting grandchild: And what are the names of Santa's reindeer, honey?

Small grandchild: Rudolph.... and Cheeto.... and FALCOR!

Me: \o/

Why the heck not? :-D

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