Sunday–25Nov18

Another rainy Sunday……my garden is close to finished…..seeding will begin Monday and then the wait until the harvest…..

This weekend the internet in my area is a slow mess…..how’s yours?

I have been watching the developments along the formation of the US Space Force( or whatever name they finally decide is proper)…..so because I have been watching this I also feel I need to keep an eye on the findings in space……who knows what our troops may face in the future…..

We may stretch our wings and go to the stars, as they say……

Barnard’s Star, a red dwarf star located in a solar system about six light-years away from Earth, may have some company. Researchers of the “exoplanet-hunting” group Red Dots have detected a planet—some 3.2 times the Earth’s mass and very cold—orbiting the star, Smithsonian reports. Their findings were published in Nature on Wednesday. “We firmly believe the object is there,” says lead researcher Ignasi Ribas. “We always have to remain a bit cautious … but we were sure enough that we were willing to go forward with publication.” The planet, Barnard’s Star b, is the second-closest exoplanet (a planet outside of our solar system) to Earth, per USA Today.

Researchers looked at two decades worth of data from seven different telescopes to pick up the planet, according to Forbes. As for the possibility of life on Bernard’s Star b, the planet is “way too cold” to sustain liquid water, Ribas says, and whether life may be frozen beneath an ocean is just speculation at this point. During the course of their study, Smithsonian notes, researchers found faint evidence of another planet, which would be Barnard’s Star c. Several decades ago, scientists believed that they had detected planets around the star. However, those ended up being the result of an instrument problem. (Last year, scientists found the smallest possible star.)

Just as the earth orbits its star, the Sun……but what if there was no sun to orbit?

Debate has raged in astronomical circles for years as to whether rogue planets could exist. Since they do not have a star to illuminate them, they are extremely difficult to find as they are almost always in the dark. However, a technique called gravitational microlensing allowed researchers to identify rogue planets by seeing when a planet comes between a distant star and the Earth. When this happens, the planet acts like a lens, distorting the light that we can see from that star when it reaches Earth. This indicates that a massive body like a planet is passing in front of the star, and the size of the body can be estimated from the size of the distortion.

https://www.digitaltrends.com/cool-tech/rogue-planets-discovered/

If and when we get our new Space Force one of the probable sites for a base is Mars….and we are still learning all we can about the planet…..

Between 3.5 billion and 3.9 billion years ago, when simple life forms were emerging on Earth, a river flowed through a delta system into a lake on Mars, then a warm and wet planet. NASA plans to send a rover there to see if any traces of life remain. The Jezero Crater site has been selected as the destination of the 2020 Mars rover mission, and scientists say that if life ever existed on the red planet, the crater is one of the places likeliest to hold evidence of it. “A delta is extremely good at preserving bio-signatures—any evidence of life that might have existed in the lake water … or possibly things that lived in the headwaters region that were swept in by the river and deposited in the delta,” project scientist Ken Farley tells the BBC.

The crater was chosen after a search that looked at around 60 sites, CNN reports. Farley says researchers have wanted to know more about the site for years, but it was once thought impossible to land a rover in the rugged terrain. “What was once out of reach is now conceivable, thanks to the 2020 engineering team and advances in Mars entry, descent, and landing technologies,” he says. Another rover, meanwhile, is preparing to land on Mars next week, NBC News reports. The InSight lander is due to land on the Monday after Thanksgiving to begin its mission to study the crust, mantle, and core of Mars, but it will have to survive a complicated landing NASA scientists call “seven minutes of terror” first, Forbes reports. (The Curiosity Rover has found the “building blocks of life” on Mars.)

More Mars news……

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/nasa-mars-insight-landing-explained-when-where-space-agency-latest-a8648986.html

Once we get our troops in training will they do what recruits use to do in the “old days” police the area?  The area in this case is the space around the earth…….

As an international relations scholar who studies space law and policy, I have come to realize what most people do not fully appreciate: Dealing with space debris is as much a national security issue as it is a technical one.

Considering the debris circling the Earth as just an obstacle in the path of human missions is naive. As outer space activities are deeply rooted in the geopolitics down on Earth, the hidden challenge posed by the debris is the militarization of space technologies meant to clean it up.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2018/11/14/why_space_debris_cleanup_is_a_national_security_threat_113954.html

Some things never change for the grunt…whether earth bound or space cadet……matters not.

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