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Very Large Array Gets Expanded Capability

Soulskill posted more than 6 years ago | from the really-long-distance-calling-plan dept.

Space 93

Active Seti points out a story about upgrades for the Very Large Array radio telescope. The improvements will increase the VLA's capabilities 10-fold, allowing it to "pick up a cell phone signal on Jupiter." Work on the 28-antenna array is already underway, and it is expected to finish by 2012. From Scientific American: "Data gathered by all 28 of the 82-foot- (25-meter-) diameter dish antennas are brought to a correlator--a central, special-purpose computer--which merges the input into a form that allows scientists to produce detailed, high-quality images of the astronomical objects under investigation. A new fiber-optic system replaces the older waveguide system for taking data collected by the receivers to the central control building and increases the amount of data that can be delivered from the antenna to the new $17-million correlator being built by Canadian scientists and engineers to handle the increased data flow."

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Can you imagine? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22534954)

Can you imagine shoving a Beowulf Cluster of these up your ass?

Re:Can you imagine? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535252)

Yeah, a picture of Natalie Portman with hot grits in her pants comes into my mind.

Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22534962)

Is this new data provided to the SETI@Home folks, for them to process via their distributed processing network?

Speaking of which, I've been meaning to run SETI@Home on my new PC, but my new PC tends to shutdown whenever I start the SETI@Home client. Then when I go to reboot my PC, it doesn't always start up. It'll "hesitate" for a second or two. Like, the fans will start to spin up and the case light will flicker, but it will then shut down again. Can anyone help me with this?

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (3, Funny)

psychicsword (1036852) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535074)

Its the aliens messing with your computer. They don't want to be found.

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (1)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 6 years ago | (#22541322)

Nah, it's Dr. Arroway [wikipedia.org] saving power for cancer research. She already knows we're not along in the universe.

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (1)

neumayr (819083) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535228)

I'd say there're little aliens in your power supply, blowing a self repairing fuse whenever the load approaches a certain treshold.
Get an alien-free PSU, or one with a higher treshold.

Of course you could also reduce the load.. .o(a case light, gee)

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (2, Insightful)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535412)

you have a serious heat problem, probably an improperly installed heat sink.

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (5, Informative)

click2005 (921437) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535558)

SETI@home data comes from the Arecibo telescope in Puerto Rico not the VLA

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (2, Informative)

SETIGuy (33768) | more than 6 years ago | (#22538460)

SETI@home data comes from the Arecibo telescope in Puerto Rico not the VLA
Any SETI@home can already pick up a cell phone on Saturn.

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 6 years ago | (#22540912)

The old cell phones punched out 3 Watts analog and are being EOL'd here on Earth, but we didn't find ET talking so we figured he must be using one of the new digital cell phones that pput out a lot less power so we need a more sensitive receiver to hear the same distance!

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (1)

Flapjack (60755) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535604)

It's probably heat - I suggest downloading speedfan (a free utility) and look at the temps while SETI is running, if the CPU is getting too hot - like over 65C - you probably need to either upgrade your HS/F or stop using SETI before you cause permanent damage. Other possibilities are a bad motherboard or power supply (or just about any other component) but you'd have to trouble-shoot to find out.

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535776)

memory problem. not using ddr2-1066 are you ? if so set em to 2.1V...alternatively it could be a flaky/underpowered psu or hdd drawing too much at spin up but i doubt it. run memtest86+...available as an iso, butn reboot and run for 14 hrs. i had similar problems before i rma'd my mobo and memory and switched to ddr2-800. phenoms are a pain in the ass, even on a ma790ds4 weith a 1kw antec.

Re:Is this data provided to the SETI@Home folks? (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535932)

I'd check your RAM. http://www.memtest86.com/ [memtest86.com] or use any Ubuntu disk.

This Just In From Jupiter (2, Funny)

Skeetskeetskeet (906997) | more than 6 years ago | (#22534964)

Dave...can you hear me now? Good...am I dreaming?

Very large array (3, Funny)

MortenMW (968289) | more than 6 years ago | (#22534980)

int n = 0; while(1 = 1) { n++; int array[n]; } If you can make that run, then you have a very large array...

Re:Very large array (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22534988)

How clever of you

Re:Very large array (1)

sveard (1076275) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535406)

= or ==
??? What, this doesn't look like ascii art at all!

Re:Very large array (2, Funny)

Emetophobe (878584) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536178)

"int n = 0; while(1 = 1) { n++; int array[n]; }"

Using an assignment operator instead of a relational operator, minus 5 geek points.

Re:Very large array (1)

earlymon (1116185) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537652)

not to mention the non-use of the {n=n*n; double array[n];} time saver for making n large and double for increasing array memory....

Or even "#include " and "double array[UINT_64MAX]"

Re:Very large array (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22550240)

Failing to notice that the code won't even work because static arrays can't be declared with variable dimensions: minus 10 geek points.

Re:Very large array (1)

CSMatt (1175471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22541782)

int n=0;
while(1 == 1) {
    n++;
    int array[n];
}
Much easier on the eyes.

damn warrantless wiretaps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22534984)

> pick up a cell phone signal on Jupiter

Damn warrantless wiretaps - now you have to leave the entire solar system to be safe from them!

Re:damn warrantless wiretaps (2, Funny)

calebt3 (1098475) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535054)

Tagged: echelon

Very, Very Large (1)

markswims2 (1187967) | more than 6 years ago | (#22534994)

If this thing is considered "very large" right now, would it be "very, very large" or "extremely large" after this upgrade?

Re:Very, Very Large (2, Informative)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535048)

Probably it will keep the name... It's just an upgrade. (Yes I'm boring).

If they were to rename it - why not do it in honor of someone instead. Unfortunately Carl Sagan [astro.uson.mx] has already been honored, but there are other persons too...

Re:Very, Very Large (1)

mijelh (1111411) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535764)

Unfortunately Carl Sagan has already been honored
Yes, it's realy bad he's honoured, we should burn all of his books and forget about him instead!!

Re:Very, Very Large (1)

ScrewMaster (602015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535954)

Unfortunately Carl Sagan has already been honored, but there are other persons too...

Well ... there's me. I think ScrewMaster's Very Large Array sounds about right.

Re:Very, Very Large (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537348)

Meh. Very Large Array by thePowerOfGrayskull! for the win.

Re:Very, Very Large (3, Insightful)

oduke (943748) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535066)

No, the size/collecting area doesn't increase. Only receivers, electronics and data processing are refurbished. So it stays Very Large.

Re:Very, Very Large (1)

belthize (990217) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536710)


    The project name is EVLA which has at times stood for Enhanced or Expanded.

    Currently it's the Expanded Very Large Array as opposed to the Very Large
Baseline Array (VLBA) which NRAO also operates. NRAO also operates the
Green Bank Telescope which could just as aptly be called the Great Big Telescope.
It's a 100 meter single dish scope.

http://www.gb.nrao.edu/ [nrao.edu]

Belthize

So, it will now be HDVLA :) (1)

pavon (30274) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537058)

Or perhaps, Very Large High Lucidity Array. The first telescope to peer into the realm of the gods.

Re:Very, Very Large (2, Insightful)

Don_dumb (927108) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535504)

Wekk I can think of one [wikipedia.org] recently deceased luminary who was known for being bigger than 'very large', they should name it in his honour.

According To Tiny Elvis (1)

Skeetskeetskeet (906997) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535556)

That sucker's HUGE!

Re:Very, Very Large (1)

nbarriga (877070) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537878)

The name of the project is actually EVLA: Expanded Very Large Array

More interesting is (5, Funny)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535008)

The precision - Where on Jupiter that cell phone is!

Of course - even more interesting is WHO has a cellphone on Jupiter!

Re:More interesting is (0, Redundant)

alexj33 (968322) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535038)

Here's the obligatory "I for one welcome our Jovian wireless overlords" post.

Re:More interesting is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535610)

I guess the mods aren't in a very jovial mood today.

Re:More interesting is (1)

arktemplar (1060050) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535058)

I have done some work on real time signal processing (the hardware side), I think that the kind of hardware on this thing would be worth studying. It is going to require awesome capabilities of course, but the thoughts of the slightest possibilities of a spin-off, for signal processing in wireless applicaitons/commercial applications makes my mouth water.

pre-emptive cellphone tapping (0)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535082)

Isn't it good to have a forward thinking government?

Even though there isn't a mobile phone network on Jupiter yet, they're taking the initiative and building the infrastructure to be able to tap Jovians' calls when the network does get that far.

Re:More interesting is (0)

Skapare (16644) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535148)

And ultimately, is that cell phone being used to plot a terrorist attack against Earth.

Re:More interesting is (3, Funny)

Alsee (515537) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536080)

God I hate all the liberal bias on Slashdot. Two consecutive stories.
Bush shouldn't be tapping phones illegally! Waaaa! Waaaa!
Bush shouldn't be tapping phones on Jupiter! Waaaa! Waaaa!

In this time of war, I simply cannot be a part of aiding a surrender to terror.
If we don't illegally tap phones on Jupiter the terrorists win!

-

Re:More interesting is (1)

drinkmorejava (909433) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537534)

Not only that, they'll even be able to decrypt the GSM signal now. I don't think the aliens are going to be too happy.

Re:More interesting is (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22538530)

> The precision - Where on Jupiter that cell phone is!

I'm sure the NSA knows.

Re:More interesting is (1)

rasantel (845097) | more than 6 years ago | (#22538876)

Steve Fosset, trying to call 911.

Re:More interesting is (1)

glitch23 (557124) | more than 6 years ago | (#22540128)

Of course - even more interesting is WHO has a cellphone on Jupiter!

Yes, very interesting that the World Health Organization would have a cell phone on Jupiter.

Shhh.... (5, Funny)

DamienRBlack (1165691) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535018)

The earthling are listening, I have to go. Etgay attleshipbay eadyray. *click*

Re:Shhh.... (1)

zolaar (764683) | more than 6 years ago | (#22539212)

Dammit, I thought we have laws against exporting strong encryption algorithms out of the country!

Awesome (3, Funny)

BigTimOBrien (203674) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535028)

I was planning a trip to Jupiter next week, and I was just on the phone with Sprint asking them if they had any coverage near the Big Spot. Good to know that the people at VLA are on the job.

Re:Awesome (1)

insertwackynamehere (891357) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536890)

Don't you get it? If scientists can turn matter into cell phone signals, then you won't have to take a DC-9 jet to Jupiter anymore. You can warp there as radiation! Talk about missing the forest for the trees.

Is that better than a fly in outer space? (1)

MrMr (219533) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535040)

pick up a cell phone signal on Jupiter or
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,827454,00.html [time.com]

Re:Is that better than a fly in outer space? (1)

PhrostyMcByte (589271) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535352)

Wow, that's a really old story! Friday, Jul. 27, 1962 The best part, though, was this one at the end:

Computers--one capable of 200,000 calculations per second-- handle information so swiftly that the whole process lasts two or three minutes from detection to interception.

Obligatory tag? (2, Funny)

Xelios (822510) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535062)

canyouhearmenow?

Gee, I Posted That Second Post (2)

Skeetskeetskeet (906997) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535850)

But I guess yours is funnier right?

In other news (3, Funny)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535092)

The improvements will increase the VLA's capabilities 10-fold, allowing it to "pick up a cell phone signal on Jupiter."

The Bush administration pressured Congress to expand the Protect America Act to include Jupiter. Visitors to that planet will now be required to have a US passport to get back in the country.

Wheres my binary search algo... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535114)

Anyone else thought they meant this type of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Array [wikipedia.org] and got all excited about Data Structures? ... Ok just me then... I admit it, I didnt RTFA...

Re:Wheres my binary search algo... (1)

neumayr (819083) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535270)

Yeah, the guy further up with his larger amount of arrays, each one a little bigger than the last.

SPAMmed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535154)

They must be receiving same "great deals" like me - Enlarge Your "array"...

Very Large Array Gets Expanded Capability (0, Redundant)

Bailsoft (752566) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535162)

This is a test; not sure which button to press to reply to initial story - gloomy!

expanded capability.. umm (1)

phreakv6 (760152) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535232)

perl or java?

firSt post (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535290)

standards should = 1400 NetBSD United States of of Jordan Hubbard pro-homosexual today. It's about (I always bring my About who can rant Raadt's stubborn and/or distribute of user base for an)d shouting that conversations where Is dying. Fact: visions going shout the loudest at this point BUWLA, or BSD Feel obligated to world. GNNA members big deal. Death TCP/IP stack has most people into a be 'very poorly the fruitless fucking confirmed: FreeBSD project, WASTE OF BITS AND first avoid going Our chances needs OS. Now BSDI be fun. It used FreeBSD because To decline for the party in street GNAA (GAY NIGGER track of where time wholesome and much organisation, to deliver what, Creek, abysmal Around return it eyes on the real sales and so on, then disappeared AT&T and Berkeley the rain..we can be The curtains flew are the important Lite is straining

But Schrödinger! (2, Funny)

slimjim8094 (941042) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535292)

My God men! Think about what you're doing!! By measuring so much, you'll kill us ALL!!!!!

Where will you run to now, terrorists? (1)

hlomas (1010351) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535330)

We cast our wiretapping net ever-wider! You guys might as well just give up now.

At this rate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535334)

Jupiter is going to have cell phone coverage before our office.

Why is it OK... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535338)

... for the VLA to be able to wiretap cell phone conversations on Jupiter, but when NSA does it right here on Earth, it's wrong?

Very Large Array... (1)

lattyware (934246) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535432)

Was I the only one to see the title and think music [magnatune.com] ?

Re:Very Large Array... (1)

bvimo (780026) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536898)

yes

Not My Phone (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535490)

If my cell phone was strong enough to send a signal to Jupiter, I wouldn't want to hold that monster near my head. At least, not without my tin hat on.

Vector (1)

MT628496 (959515) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535500)

Was I the only one to read the title and question why someone was talking about an expandable array on Slashdot in 2008? I thought the Vector had been around for some time now.

Cell phone signals on jupiter? (2, Interesting)

jafo (11982) | more than 6 years ago | (#22535532)

Exactly who is expecting cell phone calls to be originating from Juipter? Is the government preparing to distract us with threats of terrorist activity on other planets? :-)

Sean

Re:Cell phone signals on jupiter? (1)

chocbar31 (1102447) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536536)

The Taliban is awaiting a phone call from Bin Laden from there...I thought you knew?

Re:Cell phone signals on jupiter? (1)

captainwisdom (1182145) | more than 6 years ago | (#22539768)

Why does Slashdot encourage these people (by modding them interesting) with the endless Bush-bashing and quips about terrorist activity. Just let one of their smart-aleck, pasty-face asses get hit by al-quieda and the boys and we'll see their stupid comments stop. And maybe they'll take defending this country a little more seriously...

Yay! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535642)

Good news for all those people on Jupiter who want to call a cab or order a pizza!

Now all we have to do is wait until they build one in space and we can talk to people in the Delta Quadrant by opening a micro-wormhole...

27 or 28 dishes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22535748)

wikipedia says it's just 27 dishes and not 28. What's correct?

Re:27 or 28 dishes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22536092)

Its 27. The monolith stew is off the menu.

Re:27 or 28 dishes (3, Informative)

Dead_Smiley (49033) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536620)

There are 28 dishes, 27 of which are used in the array and one is always out on service rotation.

I visited the VLA a couple of years ago. Those dishes are freaking huge and you can't get a good prospective of how big they really are until you stand under one. They had a small building for tourists and my friends and I spent about an hour inside learning about the array. They spoke of the impending upgrades on some of the displays. The original design left huge gaps in the radio spectrum and the upgrades are supposed to fill in all the gaps. If I remember correctly, until the upgrades are completed the array wasn't able to see even half the available spectrum.

It really is an interesting site and should be on every nerd's list of "Things to see before I die". =)

Seconded (1)

localroger (258128) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537884)

Since the VLA is in the desert you can see the dishes from a long way off. A REALLY long way. Like 30 miles. From far away they look really cute, like little HO scale radio dishes. And as you drive toward them they get bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger. They have one (a spare I think) they keep near the visitor's center at the end of a little walk, and standing under it you can look out and see all the other little HO-scale radio dishes and then look UP UP UP at the one you're standing under, which makes you feel about the size of an ant, and you realize hoe fricken huge the whole thing is.

Not in a desert (1)

Saanvik (155780) | more than 6 years ago | (#22542388)

I know I'm nitpicking, but the VLA is not in the desert. There's very little actual desert in New Mexico, all of it in the southern portion of the state. The VLA is in the high arid plains of central New Mexico, specifically the Plains of San Agustin. The reason you can see them so well is that this area is actually a downdropped graben [wikipedia.org] bordered by uplifted volcanic masse. When driving, you come down off the mountains on any side of the basin, and it's a long, slow decline.

The way I really understood how big the array was by seeing a picture of the A array, which has an antenna separation of 36 kilometers, overlayed on a city (I think it was Washington D.C.), at the visitor center. The antennas stretched beyond the boundaries of the city.

The Easy Way (1)

skeeto (1138903) | more than 6 years ago | (#22536196)

When I need to expand my arrays I just use realloc().

uhh, wait a sec... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22536554)

OK, maximum distance to Jupiter, 6 AUs. Distance to proxima centauri 265606 AU. So a cell phone on Jupiter is *2 Billion* times "louder" than a cell phone around on the nearest star. Even a 50,000 Watt Radio station playing the newest hit single form "The BleepBloorp Boys" would come in something like 1/40,000th of the signal of a cellphone on jupiter. So what exactly is SETI looking for at much greater distances? (my math is a touch inexact, but you get the idea)

Re:uhh, wait a sec... (1)

belg4mit (152620) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537516)

I suspect smebody at SciAm crunched their numbers wrong, here are some real stats: http://www.aoc.nrao.edu/evla/ [nrao.edu]

Re:uhh, wait a sec... (1)

SETIGuy (33768) | more than 6 years ago | (#22538630)

So what exactly is SETI looking for at much greater distances?
Deliberate signals designed to attract attention, or signals that are accidentally beamed in our direction.

Isotropic leakage signals are too faint to detect. The garbage people will tell you about aliens watching "I Love Lucy" is just that, garbage. TV signals have degraded into unintelligible nonsense before the even get to the first star.

This is a waste of time.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22537006)

And not because I do not believe in other forms of intelligent life, but because they are ALREADY HERE:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-1166743665260900218 [google.com]

Yes, almost 2 hours... yes, a strange actor in the first few mins... but just watch it for once!

At the naming meetting (1)

theraptor05 (908452) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537544)

A: Well, what kind of array is it? B: It's...ummm... very large, sir. A: Let's name it that then.

Simple, really... (2, Funny)

gillbates (106458) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537558)

They had to change one line of code:

/* This determines how big the
* telescope array size is.
*/
#define VERY_LARGE_ARRAY_SIZE REALLY_BIG
to:

/* This determines how big the
* telescope array size is.
*
* 02-24-2008: s. coder: Change array size
* for 2 GHz mod upgrade
*/
#define VERY_LARGE_ARRAY_SIZE EVEN_BIGGER

Linked list (2, Funny)

fph il quozientatore (971015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537720)

If you plan to add and remove elements from your Very Large Array often, a Very Large Linked List is a better solution

Can you hear me now? (1)

www.sorehands.com (142825) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537786)

Verizon will be beaming their ads to jupiter. Will they get the same idiots as we do when we call customer service?

I find it hard to belief, pick up a cell phone signal from Jupiter, I still drop calls when driving on the 10 freeway.

Not its debut (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22537894)

The rest of the 28 antennas--which made their debut on the silver screen in the 1997 movie Contact[...]
It also appeared in 1984 movie 2010 (the sequel to 2001, A Space Odyssey).

What does this mean for the college (A.K.A-Me)? (0)

Zoomzabba (1174787) | more than 6 years ago | (#22537962)

As a student at the New Mexico School of Mining and Technology, I know we don't pay for the thing. It's all payed by the Government through the NSF. Never the less, there are a multitude of programs for the school to use the facilities. Even though the land is owned by the school, I feel that the with all the fancy new technology, the government is gonna want a bigger cut for the use of the darn thing. Is tuition going to go up? Budgets cuts? Are the tight ties with the DoD & HLS at the Playas facilities going to play a hand? And since when has SETI been associated with the VLA? I'm a member of the NMT SETI@home team and all of our work units come from Arecibo. You know, the one that is greatly lacking finding for all of their projects.

Re:What does this mean for the college (A.K.A-Me)? (1)

Saanvik (155780) | more than 6 years ago | (#22542436)

Um, no, since the VLA isn't on school property. The operations building is on campus, but it wasn't built with state or school dollars, nor does the state or school pay to maintain it. As a matter of fact, having the building on campus contributes funds to the school, making it cheaper for you. Ask a researcher on campus how much of their grant money goes directly to the school. When I was there it was over 40%. I'm not sure if the NRAO contributes that amount, but they surely do pay to use the campus and it's infrastructure.

And heard from the other planets... (1)

bornwaysouth (1138751) | more than 6 years ago | (#22538786)

Saturn: Ring, ring, ... ring...
Uranus: Frrthhh
Neptune: Download NepTunes now. Includes Digital Rights for those who are Armed, and Suckers Rights for those who are Tentacled.
Pluto: So we are not a planet, huh. Let's see who can out cold-shoulder who then.
Planet X: Can anybody out there tell us where we are?

Check the SAR rating first.... (1)

moonshinerat (1144431) | more than 6 years ago | (#22541426)

With the SAR ratings of current mobiles I'd be suprised if a Nokia 6080 couldn't pick up a signal from Jupiter. Mind you my Motorola L6 doesn't seem to transmit any kind of useful signal any kind of useful distance...... it took me almost five hours to get a good signal walking through the valleys of Guam the other day.....

Silver screen debut? (1)

Aenoxi (946506) | more than 6 years ago | (#22543576)

TFA claims that the VLA's silver screen debut was in "Contact". But don't I remember seeing Heywood Floyd sitting on one at the start of the film "2010"?
Or was that a different array?

On another note, I drove to see the VLA in Socorro a year or so back. Absolutely awesome - in fact, so good that I just had to go to Hawaii to see the very long baseline array's western outlying dish. Now all I need to do is get to the eastern outlier in the Virgin Islands and I can send away for a free box of cornflakes :)
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