×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

First Controllable Solar Sail Launched Today

timothy posted more than 8 years ago | from the now-for-obedience-school dept.

Space 237

clustermonkey writes "The first controllable solar sail was launched earlier today from a Russian sub in the Barents Sea. The Planetary Society, founded by Carl Sagan, organized the project and were funded by Cosmos Studios, founded by Sagan's widow. There have been 2 other solar sail deployments by others, but this will be the first to attempt controlled flight. The sail is scheduled to deploy June 25." All may not be well, though: Snot Locker writes "The Cosmos 1 Weblog is showing that, although the launch initially looked successful, they can't seem to find it or hear it. Bummer. Previous Slashdot coverage on the Cosmos 1 Solar Sail mission can be found here."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

237 comments

"Bummer" (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877354)


It's a bit more than a "Bummer":

Engineer #1: Yessiree, that solar sail is up there! This calls for a celebration!
Engineer #2: Um. Where is it?
Engineer #1: [points] Up there!
Engineer #2: Where up there?
Engineer #1: Way, way up there.
Engineer #2: You have no idea, right?
Engineer #1: [weak laugh] Nah.
Engineer #1: [shrug] Bummer.

Re:"Bummer" (1)

technoextreme (885694) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877648)

You know if the thing was deployed then everyone should be able to see it. It is of course a shiny metal object close to the atmosphere.

Did they program it in miles again? (-1, Troll)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877366)

We lose more space probes due to a silly American persistance in using miles and feet when the whole world - and, yes, I do mean every single nation except for the USA - uses metric.

Those rounding errors will get you every time.

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877427)

I do mean every single nation except for the USA?

Did you fail geography, there is no other nation on Earth. well not under God at least.

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877433)

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877463)

Some Carribean nations also still use the English system.

Officially they don't. Cuba, Haiti, and other sovereign nations use metric. Dutch, French, and other nation's possessions (like the French West Indies departements of Gaudaloupe) use their mother countries metric as well.

The only exceptions are possessions - not nations - of the USA.

Here endeth the lesson.

"English"? (1)

BeaverCleaver (673164) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877839)

Even the English no longer use the so-called "english" system.

The Brits had as good a reason to hang on to the old system as the USA - They live next door to a country (France in their case, Canada for the US) who use, nay, popularised the system, and even those insular old traditionalists have realised which system. Just. Works.

BTW, if it's an "english" sytem, why to the Americans have a different-sized "gallon" to the Imperial gallon?

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (2, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877454)

You made up an issue, just so you can rant about imperial measurement.
what an ass.

also, it's Reagans fault.

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877501)

also, it's Reagans fault.

Huh? because he signed the SALT II accords that caused the Russian ICBM to become available cheap?

How is that his fault?

Since they saved a lot by buying an ICBM that was supposed to be destroyed, they could always buy another ...

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (3, Funny)

Rei (128717) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877493)

Actually, I'm betting that this time it was due to a spelling error. The sub that launched the Volna rocket was the Borisoglebsk, The first receiving station was at Petropavlovsk on the Kamchatka penninsula. The temporary ground station to pick it up next was on Majuro. Then it will next contact Panska Ves in the Czech republic. It's not until the ground stations at the Tarusa and Bear Lakes that the spelling becomes sufferable. :)

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877536)

America is the worlds largest Superpower. We'll do what we want. You can keep your damn metric system. We'll keep doing just fine running things our way.

Call is sour grapes if you will, but I'm proud to be an american. Besides, we are forced learn metric in school from the time we're young. We "choose" to be different.

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (3, Funny)

gardyloo (512791) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877566)

Call is sour grapes if you will, but I'm proud to be an american. Besides, we are forced learn metric in school from the time we're young. We "choose" to be different.

You sure do.

Re:Did they program it in miles again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877665)

But we no forced to learn spell or grammur!

Interstellar (1)

spyder913 (448266) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877368)

I wonder how well this kind of propulsion will work in interestellar space where there is no solar wind, let alone enough protons from one direction.

Maybe they'll figure out how to tack eventually...

Re:Interstellar (4, Interesting)

Council (514577) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877424)

I wonder how well this kind of propulsion will work in interestellar space where there is no solar wind, let alone enough protons from one direction.

I think the theory is you get up to a pretty high speed by the time you leave the solar system, then coast. You'd better be sure you can stop at the right place, though.

I'm sure people have figured that out. Obviously you run the process in reverse to slow down when you approach the star. But what if you can only shed half your speed by the time you get to the planet? (that is, if the other star is smaller, the planet further out, etc)?

Anyone?

Re:Interstellar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877552)

Well, having a solar sail doesn't exclude a more conventional engine. One could use an ion thruster [wikipedia.org] for braking.

Re:Interstellar (1)

laxian (174575) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877657)

Well, having a solar sail doesn't exclude a more conventional engine. One could use an ion thruster for braking

Right, also, the space vehicle wouldn't necessarily have to go directly to its destination and stop there like a boat or car. It would slow down enough to enter orbit around whatever it was after (positioning itself and/or slowing down by orbiting other things if necessary) and then doing what it needs to do (landing, observing, etc.)

Is this a serious question? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877677)

Answer: Leave the original star system with at most the maximum speed that the destination system can allow.

Re:Interstellar (2, Informative)

MrMista_B (891430) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877760)

What happens if you can only shed half your speed by the time you get to the planet?

Quite simply, you enter orbit.

Re:Interstellar (1)

Adammil2000 (797026) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877970)

Interstellar wind is supposed to be traveling at 20km/sec so that would provide propulsion beyond the heliopause, right?

Interstellar - no solar wind or enough protons? (2, Informative)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877435)

I wonder how well this kind of propulsion will work in interestellar space where there is no solar wind, let alone enough protons from one direction.

Let's visualize someone on a bike. They stand at the top of a hill (solar radiation effect, closer to the sun, more there is). They peddle enough to get going (ion drive or solar sail). Then they pick up speed rapidly as they go down the hill.

Once they reach the bottom of the hill, where there isn't enough material to push them they fold up the sail - or in our bike version, they let the mechanism keep them moving forward.

During this time the sail is folded - like the biker bent forward to lower wind resistance. As they approach the destination, based on speed, solar radiation - or for a bike, based on how steep and high the next hill is - they eventually unfurl the sail.

Pushx5 + Pushx4 + Pushx3 + Pushx2 + Pushx1 ... coast ... -Pushx0.01 + -Pushx0.02 + -Pushx0.03 + -Pushx0.04 + -Pushx5 + -Pushx6 and you're there.

The advantage over a bike is that as you go up the hill (into the solar radiation), you get pulled in by gravity and since your sails are collapsed there is not much push back.

Simple.

Yes, I know it's not linear, I'm just trying to help you visualize it. We can deal with the space-time continuum effects another time as well.

Re:Interstellar - no solar wind or enough protons? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877479)

During this time the sail is folded - like the biker bent forward to lower wind resistance.

Geez, couldn't you have left well enough alone with that moronic comment about the metric system? Think that through a little harder...why is resistance not an issue an interstellar space?

Re:Interstellar - no solar wind or enough protons? (2, Informative)

mikael (484) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877554)

Read up on "interstellar space". There is a low density of hydrogen gas out there - it wasn't pulled in by the gravitational pull of the stars when they formed, and it wasn't pushed out by the solar wind when the star achieved fusion.

So when you're craft is going at 200,000 mph, every little hydrogen atom is going to blow a chunk out of your craft and slow down your velocity. So it would make sense to reduce the surface area of your craft, in the direction that it is travelling.

Re:Interstellar - no solar wind or enough protons? (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877558)

For an unfurled solar sail, resistance would be an issue in interstellar space. If you even hit only one speck of dust per mile, over tens of light-years it still adds up!

Re:Interstellar - no solar wind or enough protons? (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877613)

why is resistance not an issue an interstellar space?
Because - resistance - is - futile. D'oh!

Re:Interstellar - no solar wind or enough protons? (2, Informative)

cahiha (873942) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877642)

Solar sails are not intended to be propelled by solar wind, they are propelled by light. For interstellar voyages, you'd propel the solar sail actively (with a laser). That technology will also be tested as part of this experiment.

Re:Interstellar - no solar wind or enough protons? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877649)

The solar wind [wikipedia.org] is the stream of charged particles that gets caught in Earth's magnetic field to create the auroras. Solar sails simply use photons and solar radiation. To see how solar wind can be applied, however, you can read NPR's piece on plasma sails. [npr.org]

Re:Interstellar (4, Informative)

cahiha (873942) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877597)

Solar sails aren't driven by solar wind or protons, they are driven by light (photons).

An interstellar voyage might be possible, but would probably require a laser or microwave system aimed at the sail for much of its journey (a brief "push" like that is also being tested as part of this experiment).

Re:Interstellar (2, Interesting)

Andrew-Unit (798862) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877793)

If you want a sail driven by solar wind/protons, you've got the Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion idea, M2P2 [nasa.gov].

From the link:

M2P2 would generate a magnetic field and then inject plasma (ionized gas) that would drag the magnetic field lines out and form a plasma bubble 30 to 60 km (18-36 mi) in diameter.

And, the plasma bubble is very light... lighter than a solar sail.

uh oh (5, Funny)

MrDoh! (71235) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877375)

I'm just waiting for when it comes back as a near omnipotent being and starts demanding to see it's creator.

Re:uh oh (1)

Kjuib (584451) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877513)

ya but... Soil does not have as good a sound to it as Vger... (Soxxx xxil)

Re:uh oh (1)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877610)

Game Over. Insert Geek Points to Continue.

Dont you mean Como, if you're trying to follow the Voyager (whatever) -> V'Ger translation. It is called Cosmos 1 not Solar Sail after all.

Re:uh oh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877654)

Dont you mean Como, if you're trying to follow the Voyager (whatever) -> V'Ger translation. It is called Cosmos 1 not Solar Sail after all.

So, should we start working on the clone of Carl, or Perry?

Phil

Re:uh oh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877762)


I'll bet it hit the tachyon surge and flew all the way to Cardassia.

Re:uh oh (0)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877994)

"I'm just waiting for when it comes back as a near omnipotent being and starts demanding to see it's creator."

Why do I have the feeling there won't be any MrDoh decendents around to see that day?

I can't see it either (1, Funny)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877380)

404 File Not Found

The requested URL (science/05/06/21/2251211.shtml?tid=160&tid=126&ti d=14) was not found.


...

Unfortunately I can't locate a google cache for the missing spacecraft.

Anyone able to post a mirror?

That's, like, ironical... (1)

Rexifer (81021) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877550)

The spacecraft is missing... It's kind of poetic that the article reporting that fact would be missing, too.

Always the risk. (4, Interesting)

reality-bytes (119275) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877390)

I really rather hope this project is okay and only suffering from a 'glitch'. (ie: unexpected orbit)

The trouble is, every time you take what is essentially a robotically controlled device and send it into space giving it a good *shake* in the process (rockets really do vibrate a lot), you run the risk of breaking something.

Of course, you combat this by duplicating as much of the systems as you can but when your experiment requires a very low mass (ala solar sail controller) I wonder how much redundancy is possible?

Still. I hope Cosmos sparks back to life /is found and they get a sucessful experiment. I would be good to prove that solar-sailing is a viable solar-locomotion concept rather than just proving that electronics packages are fragile things.

Re:Always the risk. (4, Informative)

Rei (128717) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877529)

If you want to know what the people organizing the mission are thinking, the Planetary Society's Latest Update [planetary.org] section is a good spot to go. As it stands, the following has been stated:

* The signal didn't dissapear suddenly when the kick fired - it became irregular, and then dissapeared after three minutes.

* The signal was received clearly after launch for six minutes.

* There were irregular readings coming from the Volna; however, clearly the craft detached, or there wouldn't have been six minutes of signal.

* STRATCOM can't find the satellite. That doesn't mean that it's gone - only that it's not where they told them to look. Likewise, the lack of ground station reception could mean the same thing. It could be in the wrong orbit, which is actually a more common phenominon than a total craft loss.

* The chance of signal acquisition at the early two stations was only considered marginal to begin with. The big test will be at the permanent stations in Paska Ves, and especially the Tarusa and Bear lakes.

* Not receiving a signal from a spacecraft during the first few orbits is "not extremely unusual". Nonetheless, they do sound a bit nervous.

Presumably... (4, Interesting)

Otter (3800) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877394)

...if the craft suffered "failure to enter orbit at all", presumably that means it hit space and kept going, right? I'd imagine someone would have noticed a Russian ICBM falling randomly out of the sky.

Re:Presumably... (4, Funny)

Tackhead (54550) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877475)

>...if the craft suffered "failure to enter orbit at all", presumably that means it hit space and kept going, right? I'd imagine someone would have noticed a Russian ICBM falling randomly out of the sky.

In other words, what you're trying to say is that somewhere downrange of post-Soviet Russia, solar sail will eventually find yo*CRUNCH*
NO CARRIER

Re:Presumably... (1)

winkydink (650484) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877497)

NO, I think what it means is it hit the ground with a resounding THUNK!

There's a good chance that Russian/US military know exactly where the damn thing fell but aren't telling anyone lest they give away previously unconfirmed capabilities or somesuch.

Re:Presumably... (4, Funny)

TheKidWho (705796) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877532)

I know what really happened

You see, the Russians never launched Cosmos 1, they realized that these guys would be a bunch of suckers so what they did, is they got them to pay for the launch, and then launched their own new spy satellite In the same orbit that Cosmos 1 was supposed to be in. And now they are going to tell them "tough luck, you must have out bad communications equipment on her or something". So the Americans pay the money, and the Russians get to launch their spy satellite.

Next Week on Conspiracy Theory 101
Sony and Microsoft are really in bed against Nintendo!

Re:Presumably... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877601)

Maybe the submarine sunk, and its just a coverup that they launched it?

Re:Presumably... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877704)

That's just what the Russians want you to think.

In fact, the submarine has been secretly staffed with officers loyal to the commander, who is even now on his way to the US to defect under the guise of secret orders, while bringing a premier example of Soviet naval technology with him. This mission was his excuse to get a head start.

Re:Presumably... (1)

cahiha (873942) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877617)

No. Rockets don't accidentally escape into space--it takes way too much fuel. If it were that easy, the sail would have been sent on a trajectory away from earth.

Also in the news... (1)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877684)

The United States announced that an unscheduled test of their anti-ballistic missile system succeeded in intercepting a Russian ICBM.

An official Pentagon spokesperson said, "Oops. Sorry about that."

More likely (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 8 years ago | (#12878059)

It got high enough to burn up upon reentry, but not high enough to achieve orbit.

That or it's simply not in its intended orbit, in which case reestablishing signal is a matter of finding the thing (which will happen eventually) so that one can figure out which way to point the groundstation antennas.

The first uncontrollable solar sail launched in 82 (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877395)

When I tied a Keep on Truckin' T-shirt to an Estes Andromeda.

Bummer indeed (4, Interesting)

J05H (5625) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877396)

There is a chance that it will succeed in deploying. If it's lost, it's double the downer: I helped pay for it as a Planetary Society member. PS also developed a Mars Microphone for the MPL (lost), DVD and sundial for current rovers and a balloon-borne "snake" of sensors that never flew. Dammit, I want this one to work, finally.

ad astra!

Re:Bummer indeed (2, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877453)

So umm, why can't all space research be paid for this way? Or at least, why don't US citizens have the option to pay some percentage of their tax to NASA when they file their tax returns?

Re:Bummer indeed (1)

amjacobs (769757) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877765)

Ummm....because that isn't the way our tax system works. Obviously, you can't not pay taxes on things you disagree on; this is just the opposite of that. Besides, if you want to give your money for a project like this, that is what donations are for. You don't really want to let the gov't get into it, do you?

Re:Bummer indeed (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 8 years ago | (#12878014)

My point is, why is NASA funded by our taxes? Why can't it be funded by a voluntary organisation? The space race is over. It kinda reminds me of tolls on roads and bridges. They fund the construction by charging a toll for 20 years and then they say, heck, people are used to paying the toll, we'll just leave it on.

Already failed according to Russian news (2, Informative)

marat (180984) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877401)

here [top.rbc.ru]

In short, at 83rd second engine stopped working for unknown reason, and the whole thing is currently being intensively searched for. Probably Russian ICBMs are not so good for launching satellites after all.

Re:Already failed according to Russian news (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877448)

Probably Russian ICBMs are not so good for launching satellites after all.

Look on the bright side, maybe during the Cold War Russia actually attacked the United States a couple times but no one realized it since the warheads got lost along the way... :-)

Re:Already failed according to Russian news (1)

ColaMan (37550) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877856)

Probably because ICBM's were designed to be sub-orbital, to conveniently deliver their happy-fun-payload of DOOM to the other side of the planet.

Sure, with a lighter payload and a longer engine burn to reach an intermediate orbit, they'd 'probably' be ok. But don't bet the whole farm on something that's supposed to just launch to 100km and fall back down again via gravity.

Re:Already failed according to Russian news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12878030)

I once calculated it, it should be much stronger to get to the orbit, not just lighter and longer; and in fact they use additional stage made of engine designed for satellite deorbiting - all this require a lot of testing that's exactly what they're doing now, otherwise they would do commercial satellite launches, not help people with their homegrown projects.

Unseaworthy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877409)

BBC World Service is reporting that the craft isn't sending the signals we expect. It'll be a damn shame if this is a dud.

In Soviet Russia... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877420)

... refurbished ICBM fails you!!!~~~~!one!1

Possible bad news: (1, Informative)

The Good Reverend (84440) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877421)

This is from Reuters, via CNN [cnn.com]:

Tracking stations failed to pick up signals from an experimental solar-driven orbiter launched on Tuesday from a Russian submarine, raising the prospect the mission had failed.

This includes stations in Russia's Kamchatka peninsula, the Marshall Islands, Alaska, the Czech Republic, and two stations outside Moscow.

Hopefully it's a temporary problem, or just a miscalculated orbit.

Re:Possible bad news: (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877481)

Engineer #1: A few hundred kilometers that way or this way wouldn't matter...
Engineer #2: Miles
Engineer #1: What do you mean "miles"?

pwnd!

Endevour... (2, Informative)

Robotron23 (832528) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877428)

Its certainly apparant that this sail is a huge step forward in space exploration as a whole. Whats even better is that the entire project cost around $4 million to get on the ground.

For those wandering what the mission will entail exactly, its quite simple :

Firstly, the craft must enter orbit.
After a short time, the aluminium solar sails will unfurl.
The speed and trajectory will be continually monitored as per the estimates of the Cosmos crew.

Lastly, the craft will keep heading outwards from low-earth orbit, thus concluding the mission and proving that solar sails are a viable and worthwhile method of space exploration.

Endevour [sic] (2, Informative)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877484)


You forgot one step:

Lastly, the solar wind will shred the sails of this craft, as we have not yet developed a material light enough for solar sails, yet robust enough to withstand long-term exposure to the solar wind.

Still perfectly valid for proof-of-concept, but a good long way from practical application.

Well... (1)

Blue-Footed Boobie (799209) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877440)

What would be really cool is if it came back online in a week or so, and was many hundreds of thousands of miles away already...

Re:Well... (-1, Troll)

hattig (47930) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877585)

The spacecraft has merely exercised its typical 'omg my parents aren't here' response and gone to the moon to drink cheap alcohol.

*artificial wait time because slash has been changed to fuck up most fast typists*

Fuck! Slashdot requires you to wait between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 5 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

OMFG Slash is fucked up beyond all recognition!

Slashdot requires you to wait between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 7 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

FUCKING RETARDED ASSMONKEYS!

Slashdot requires you to wait between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 10 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

fuck you slashdot, i can't even make a light hearted jokey post because you can't code for shit. stupid cunts

Slashdot requires you to wait between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 16 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

For fuck's sake, man, come on!

*closes browser, restarts Firefox, sees if the problem continues*

Slashdot requires you to wait between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 18 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

*changes to IE*

Slashdot requires you to wait between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 20 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

Slashdot requires you to wait between each successful posting of a comment to allow everyone a fair chance at posting a comment.

It's been 24 minutes since you last successfully posted a comment

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877840)

get a different ip address they are assmonkeys, as you say

I thank you for your 7ime (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877450)

Re:I thank you for your 7ime (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877608)

In Soviet Russia, YOU post to annoy the trolls!

Re:I thank you for your 7ime (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877618)

Pumpkin!

Might as well be Fox News (-1, Troll)

S.J. Wackness (893997) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877473)

Of all the media outlets which covered this story, you chose Fox News?

Re:Might as well be Fox News (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877591)

I believe you mis-spelled Faux.

Of course they can't find it... (4, Funny)

centauri (217890) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877489)

... it must be halfway to Coruscant by now.

Re:Of course they can't find it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877671)

With a souvenier hand to boot.

DEED! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877515)

Don't bother getting your hopes up. It's dead.

Space Pirates (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877541)

First we lose a couple of probes to the Martians and now a sailing vessel to a bunch of space pirates. I say we send Russel Crowe, Bruce Willis, and a crew of misfits up on a shuttle to track them down and hang 'em from the highest yardarm!

Snot Locker? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877549)

I think I'd actually be more inclined to trust an AC over someone with that moniker...

Too early to say if Cosmos has failed (1, Informative)

n54 (807502) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877559)

According to the official timeline the first high-quality ground station contact will be approximately Jun 22 04:23 UTC (Jun 21 21:23 PDT) - that is 8 h 37 m into the launch, i.e. it hasn't happened yet. I guess someone got a bit overly eager to report news or simply didn't have a clue or something similar in the time-honored Slashdot fashion...

To quote from the official timeline (which I will not link to on Slashdot for obvious reasons):
"First high-quality ground station contacts: Tarusa and Bear Lakes On the spacecraft's fifth orbit around the Earth, its orbital path will finally carry it high across the sky as seen from the Russian ground stations. These contacts should provide good communication from the spacecraft."

As to the passes and communication attempts that have been attempted so far have been attempts during low-quality situations. It sure would have been nice if they went through but it's too early to say either way yet.

After reading blog posts... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877571)

I've realized that the rocket was blasted to smithereens by GWB's Space Lazer!

Excellent test of that mizzile defenze system, Georgie! You got one!

Wheeeee!

Not looking good! (2, Informative)

Brett Buck (811747) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877620)

The report of data suddenly looking "noisy" about the time the final stage fired is a pretty classic bad news situation. The sequence is usually: "looking good!" "clean separation!" "5-4-3-2-1,kick motor ignition" data lost followed by, a short time later "radar indicates multiple targets..." Not that I am hoping, but it's a really bad sign. Brett

Re:Not looking good! (2, Informative)

Detritus (11846) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877761)

According to this [astronautix.com], all of the rocket's stages were powered by storable liquid fuel engines. So it should be immune to the inherent risks of a solid fuel kick motor. An engineer once told me that a certain percentage of kick motors just blow up, despite x-ray inspections and other tests.

Spaceflight now has the scoop (4, Informative)

fname (199759) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877621)

Spaceflight Now has posted a story [spaceflightnow.com] about the launch. The 1st stage failed after 83 seconds.

What if someone does find this thing? (1)

rsynnott (886713) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877625)

What will they think of us as a civilisation; that we launch this craft packed with messages of friendship and names of random people and things on a device designed to kill millions of people?

credibility gap... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#12877726)

i just could get past "Snot Locker"... never mind actually reading TFA.

How does it stop? (1)

MoogMan (442253) | more than 8 years ago | (#12877824)

So, by the time it gets to pluto, it'll be gone past in a few milliseconds, at 100,000 miles per hour or something. Forgive me for asking, but...

How do they get the damn thing to stop?!
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...