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Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:12 PM

NASA beams Mona Lisa to moon with laser



Using a well-timed laser, NASA scientists have beamed a picture of Leonardo da Vinci's masterpiece, the Mona Lisa, to a powerful spacecraft orbiting the moon, marking a first in laser communication.

The laser signal, fired from an installation in Maryland, beamed the Mona Lisa to the moon to be received 240,000 miles (384,400 km) away by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter, which has been orbiting the moon since 2009. The Mona Lisa transmission, NASA scientists said, is a major advance in laser communication for interplanetary spacecraft.

"This is the first time anyone has achieved one-way laser communication at planetary distances," David Smith, a researcher working with the LRO's Lunar Orbiter Laser Altimeter which received the Mona Lisa message said in a statement. "In the near future, this type of simple laser communication might serve as a backup for the radio communication that satellites use. In the more distance future, it may allow communication at higher data rates than present radio links can provide."

...http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/space/stories/nasa-beams-mona-lisa-to-moon-with-laser


16 replies, 1679 views

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Arrow 16 replies Author Time Post
Reply NASA beams Mona Lisa to moon with laser (Original post)
progressoid Jan 2013 OP
Dr. Strange Jan 2013 #1
progressoid Jan 2013 #8
think Jan 2013 #2
Solly Mack Jan 2013 #3
Ian David Jan 2013 #7
Motown_Johnny Jan 2013 #10
pinboy3niner Jan 2013 #4
EOTE Jan 2013 #13
samsingh Jan 2013 #5
Ian David Jan 2013 #6
edbermac Jan 2013 #12
Ian David Jan 2013 #15
zappaman Jan 2013 #9
backscatter712 Jan 2013 #11
Matariki Jan 2013 #14
Romulox Jan 2013 #16

Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:17 PM

1. STOP BOMBING THE MOON!!!!

Why must we despoil the serenity that is the beauty of the moon? Stop the lunacy!

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Response to Dr. Strange (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:49 PM

8. We set our laser to "stun"



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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:25 PM

2. Kick and Rec. Truly fascinating

So many exciting prospects like laser communications on the horizon that could alter our understanding of life as we know it.

Here's to hoping society evolves enough to withstand the technological evolution that is transpiring.



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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:28 PM

3. K&R

I'd have sent "The Scream" by Edvard Munch.

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Response to Solly Mack (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:47 PM

7. I'd have sent this...

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Response to Solly Mack (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:54 PM

10. Funny, I went to "A Starry Night" by Van Gogh


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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:30 PM

4. There was a problem with the transmission at first

Thank Goodness that elderly Spanish woman was there to fix it!


http://pulseradio.net/articles/2012/08/80-year-old-spanish-woman-turns-jesus-into-a-monkey

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #4)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 04:04 PM

13. LOL. Ecce Mona. NT

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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:36 PM

5. inspiring

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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 12:46 PM

6. This is how future astronauts on the moon will have to download porn. n/t

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Response to Ian David (Reply #6)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 04:01 PM

12. They'll take it with them, they did it 40 years ago on Apollo 12

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_12#Stunts_and_mementos

As one of the many pranks pulled during the friendly rivalry between the all-Navy prime crew and the all-Air Force backup crew, the Apollo 12 backup crew managed to insert into the astronauts' lunar checklist (attached to the wrists of Conrad's and Bean's spacesuits) reduced-sized pictures of Playboy playmates, surprising Conrad and Bean when they looked through the checklist flip-book during their first EVA. The Apollo Lunar Surface Journal website contains a PDF file with the photocopies of their cuff checklists showing these photos. Appearing in Conrad's checklist were Angela Dorian, Miss September 1967 (with the caption "SEEN ANY INTERESTING HILLS & VALLEYS ?") and Reagan Wilson, Miss October 1967 ("PREFERRED TETHER PARTNER", referring to a special procedure that would require the sharing of life support resources). The photos in Bean's cuff checklist were of Cynthia Myers, Miss December 1968 ("DON'T FORGET - DESCRIBE THE PROTUBERANCES") and Leslie Bianchini, Miss January 1969 ("SURVEY - HER ACTIVITY", in pun of Surveyor).

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Response to edbermac (Reply #12)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:11 AM

15. OMG, I never knew this! Thanks! n/t

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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:50 PM

9. Why are we polluting the moon?

Haven't we damaged the Earth enough?

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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:56 PM

11. Schweet!

Oh, and point to think about: Reed-Solomon coding is one of the things that makes ubiquitous computing possible. Every hard disk and SSD made today uses Reed-Solomon error correction. Sectors of data on hard disks get corrupted all the time. Platters get scratched, bits get flipped, data gets messed up all the time. Democratic Underground is made possible by Reed-Solomon error correction.

Reed Solomon enables you to create a representation of your data with built-in mathematical redundancy, so if some of your data gets scrambled, there's enough left that your computer knows how to put it back together and get it back to you like nothing ever happened. In hard disks, the microcontroller and its firmware automagically detect corrupted data, reconstruct it with Reed-Solomon, relocate it to spare sectors, and keep your data intact, and the user's none-the-wiser.

And as the OP points out, it's great for transmitting data to spacecraft millions of miles away without bits getting scrambled.

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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 04:06 PM

14. OMG - now they've done it. Now the Martians are going to come for our women.

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Response to progressoid (Original post)

Mon Jan 21, 2013, 11:12 AM

16. And they wonder why people think NASA doesn't do useful work... nt

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