InSight mission to Mars Lands Nov. 26

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After a successful launch in May 5, 2018 the Insight mission sent to Mars to explore Mars’ interior structure is planned to land on November 26, 2018. The interesting part is the mission landing will be monitored by two cube satellites that were launched with Insight and have been traveling on their own since the launch as show in the launch video below. The landing can be watched live on Nov. 26, 2018.

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Nearly Naked Black Hole

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Credit: NRAO/AUI/NSF, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center and the Advanced Visualization Laboratoy at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications, NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center/CI Lab

eVscope – the most innovative amateur telescope so far

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via: Kickstarter

Cassini – An exhilarating story of planetary exploration

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For more information: Cassini at Saturn

More on the Grand Finale (2nd dive: May 2, 2017; End of mission: Sept 15, 2017)

OSIRIS-REx on a mission to asteroid Bennu and back by 2023

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Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Regolith Explorer, or OSIRIS-REx mission, the first mission to sample an asteroid, was launched from Cape Canaveral on September 8. The launching rocket, an Atlas V 411, reached supersonic speed (video @ 01:10).

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Earth has a non-threatening small orbiting asteroid

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It was recently discovered that a small asteroid has been in a stable orbit around Earth for at least a decade. The nature of its orbit “prevents the asteroid from approaching much closer than about 38 times the distance of the moon.”.

Source: JPL via Slashdot news

The phenomenal feat SpaceX achieved

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For some reasons I missed the live cast of the launch and landing that SpaceX did.

Here’s the deal in short. They launched the Falcon 9 rocket into space, passed the maximum Q at which aerodynamic pressure is at its highest and could cause serious trouble to any rocket.

Following the detachment of the stage 1 booster and the ignition of the 2nd stage booster, and this is the phenomenal feat they did, the stage 1 part made an acrobatic flip, made the appropriate adjustments to put itself on the right trajectory to return to land and actually do a(n) (experimental) landing (occurs at 32m 20s). The goal of this is pretty obvious, a reusable rocket.

The second stage part continued into outer space to release 6 deployments with a total of 11 satellites (36m 46s). Not one but six deployments. They have achieved not a single feat but several. Even the live cast on-board the Falcon 9 and during the satellite deployment is a feat by itself.

All this happened in under 20 minutes not counting preparation time of course.

Congrats SpaceX.

Below is the full cast. The first video starts at the launching event(22m 10s) and the second video starts at the landing of the 1st stage rocket followed by the 6 deployments.