Friday, July 26, 2013

Weekly Rundown

            NASA has received over 400 proposals from private companies, international organizations, and non-profit groups. This was in response to a call for suggestions on an asteroid retrieval mission.  About a third of the proposals were tied directly to NASA’s Asteroid Grand Challenge. The rest dealt with components of the mission.
            This mission has also sparked debate in congress as to whether NASA should focus on a manned asteroid exploration, or if they should look more at a moon oriented goal.
            The article itself is short, but not bad. Basically an update article. But I don’t see why the two are exclusive. We should be doing both right now.  There is no reason not to have a moon base already in operation in my opinion. The advantages of having such a base could be the focus of more than one book on the subject I am sure. Research alone would advance as well, especially in the areas of space and travel. And if anything did go bad at least they are close enough that it is feasible to rescue them. And basing on the moon would also make a magnetic launch system something that could be looked at as well, instead of using fuel to launch from the moon with.

            NASA is gaining more confidence in the printed technology as the engine parts that were developed using 3D printing have gone through another rounds of tests without a problem. The two injectors were made with both printed and traditionally created parts, and survived temperatures of around 6,000 degrees Fahrenheit and extreme pressures. The tests just done follow the recent tests done at the Glenn Research Center here in Ohio.
            As i mentioned before here, the process is cheaper and faster, and this week I actually have a price comparison listed in the article to show that.  The injectors that are constructed using the standard method cost around 10,000 dollars each. They also each take 6 months to build one. The printed version however took only a few weeks to make, and only cost 5,000 dollars. I have listed numerous reasons times why I think this technology is the next wave of production. I also think it will be in space as well soon in order to make parts, even if temporary emergency parts only. See, another reason for a permanent moon base or station, which I am coming to next.

            The ISS has been undergoing a serious engineering and risk analysis assessment. This is to gauge whether it will be operable through 2020.
            Brad Cothran, Boeing’s vehicle director for ISS had this to say on the subject. “The good news is, so far, we haven’t found any showstoppers. Our plan has been to get back to the ISS program and clear the station to get to 2020. After we get to that point, we’ll enter what we call our phase three, and we’re going to clear the ISS for 2028 and beyond.”
            It does turn out however that the solar arrays are degrading faster than they originally thought they would. They are degrading between 1-2% per year instead of the max of 1% year per rate as what was calculated. It is still a mystery as to why this is happening, but one thought is that the proton and neutron environment is more severe than originally thought.
            Memory devices that aren’t powered are also becoming a problem, as they only hold their memory for an average of around ten years. 
            There are many other things as well, and too numerous to list it all here.
            This article shows my reasoning also for a massive space station. We need to get with his and start doing things that are meant to last, period. Anything we build to use in space should be built to last for much longer than what we have been doing. A massive station, big enough to hold one or two shuttles in, and a moon base, and things would happen to help the entire world then. And if I start listing here, I won’t be done till next week, so I’ll shut up my rant on this for now. Check it out though; it’s a pretty good article about some of the things they are learning there over the years.

            A bill introduced to congress has started controversy, for some unknown reason. I’m going to try and be nice about this here. Apollo Lunar Landing Sites National Historical Park would be on the moon. This has come up due to the new commercial space flight situations that are going to be arising soon, and as other countries are now advancing their capabilities as well. This means that anyone could actually be landing on the moon soon.
            Okay, I’m done with the article here. I’ll put the link at the end of course for anyone else that wants to get irritated quickly by this even being a bloody issue. What the smeg is wrong with those people, (I use the term uselessly). This should not be an issue, or even a discussion. If they don’t, people like me (but ones that actually have money), will have that stuff in their houses one day. As soon as I saw the title of that article, I knew where it was headed, and for those old enough, images of “SALVAGE 1” I am sure jumped in your heads.
            I admit it. If I could get my hands on that stuff, you bet I would. Talk about a center piece for a science or a sci-fi collection. Hell, any collection for that matter. And it should be a historic site. What the smeg else are you going to call it. We were there. We did it. We made it to the bloody moon because it was there. And we had to leave our own world, and cross a gulf of vacuum and radiation to get there. IT’S A FREAKING HISTORICAL SITE, PERIOD.
            I’m just going to say it. Anyone opposing this should just be slapped.
            In the end, it would be listed with United Nations Educational, Scientific, and
Cultural Organization as a World Heritage Site. As it should be. Why anyone would be against this is beyond me. And I actually managed to be nice about this here, and didn’t say a word that I would like to say about certain people. I am quite sure you all know my feelings on this as it is anyway.

            Now on to the sci-fi part of this week’s rundown. I dropped the ball this week on this front, that’s for sure. Basically, building a kitchen, and found a new anime that I will discuss here instead of the regular rundown of movie stuff. A quick look through things though didn’t show anything that was really new or that wouldn’t be common knowledge to all of us out here already. I am watching this on HULU. It’s not HULU Plus, so it is available for anyone to watch that has an internet connection.

            Yeah, that is Tail, not Tale. It is the name of a guild of magic users that hire themselves out to do jobs for people. There are actually many magical guilds on the continent. Fairy Tail however is a bit of a different type of guild. For one thing, they’re all freaking insane. The whole guild is nuts. All of them.
            The magic is based on the separatist style lean in anime, as each person that uses it and studies it focuses on a certain aspect, like ice, fire, card magic, ring magic, etc.
            If you like anime like slayers, that is kind of out there in terms of characters and story lines, this is a good one. Gray, a powerful ice wizard of creation magic has this habit of taking his clothes off. Anywhere, at any time, and doesn’t even realize he is doing it. That gets explained in the series believe it or not. It isn’t a truly bloody violence, but things do get blown to smeg now and then. Which is one of the council’s problems with the Fairy Tail Guild. A lot of them kind of over do things.  
There are plenty of battles, and plenty of character history as you learn about them as you go along. And you get to see them become stronger as they band together and move ahead.
            This is also a Manga, which I have never seen. But I love the anime version. And you also get to see what they learn about secrets, as they move through their daily lives of taking jobs, and hanging out at the guild. It is really a great story so far, and having seen only half of the 48 available on HULU, I have to recommend it. There are more but they are on DVD. Which is fine because I plan on buying the series as it is released here anyway. It is a total of around 175 episodes or so I believe.
            But check this out. It’s a fun anime, filled with great stories, lots of action, and mystery. I definitely recommend it for anyone that is a character follower like me. There are plenty in this one to keep you up for hours watching it. The first link is to the character listings on the Fairy Tail WIKI site. The second is to the main page for the show on HULU. There are 48 dubbed episodes, and 72 subtitled.  Enjoy all.

            Well, see you all next week folks. I’ll try and keep up a bit more with the things this week as Paul is down for a short time as you all have read I am sure. See you all next week folks. And let’s all wish Paul a speedy recovery and getting himself back out here where he belongs. 

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