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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:07 AM
Original message
BBC: Solar capsule impacts Earth
Edited on Wed Sep-08-04 11:10 AM by muriel_volestrangler
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/3638926.stm

A capsule from the Genesis probe, which has been gathering particles blown off the Sun, has impacted with the Earth.

The capsule entered the atmosphere as planned at 1555GMT (1655BST) but its drogue parachute failed to open.

Hollywood stunt pilots had been waiting to catch the capsule in midair to give its cargo a special soft landing.

The particles of solar wind in the capsule were being sought to by scientists to investigate the origin of the Solar System.
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soleft Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:09 AM
Response to Original message
1. ok, here goes my tinfoil hat
Did it contain info that might dispute "Genesis"
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BiggJawn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:10 AM
Response to Original message
2. Oops! The 'chute didn't open....
The helio guys never got a crack at it.
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da_chimperor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:10 AM
Response to Original message
3. Fudge
Edited on Wed Sep-08-04 11:12 AM by theexpat
I hope it's ok . . . . never mind.
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Demonaut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:13 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. trashed, the capsule is cracked wide open
hopefully something can be salvaged
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meisje Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:11 AM
Response to Original message
4. Damn you Bush!
I figured it had to be in every thread :shrug:
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Connie_Corleone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:13 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. "Bad Luck" Bush??
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AngryAmish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:51 AM
Response to Reply #4
16. heh
Top 1% post!
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Beetwasher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:14 AM
Response to Original message
7. Man, That Really Sucks!
Probably would have been some interesting data...
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GreatCaesarsGhost Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:15 AM
Response to Original message
8. nasa channel covering it
Edited on Wed Sep-08-04 11:17 AM by GreatCaesarsGhost
choppers on scene now

edit radio chatter says there may be "live mortar" - must be from the

chute.
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redqueen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:18 AM
Response to Original message
9. Damn... didn't look for 'solar capsule'
I searched for "Genesis" and posted a dupe of this...

How long before we hear the obligatory, 'we shouldn't be spending money on space exploration' mantras?
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Hegemony Cricket Donating Member (438 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:20 AM
Response to Reply #9
11. I think we should be spending money on the space program...but...
I watched this live via NASAs feed. I really wanted this thing to beat the odds and be a success.

Note to NASA:

If you are working on a project that will cost millions of dollars and if the words "STUNT PILOTS" are a prominent component of the plan and if you are not making a movie...THEN RETHINK THE PLAN.

I know, the Stunt Pilots weren't even given the opportunity to fail since the chute never deployed...but c'mon.

It's like they have a prize they give their engineers for "most points of failure".

I love the space program...I think NASA is incredibly valuable...but this stuff makes me furious.
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Xithras Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:19 AM
Response to Original message
10. Damn
If the scientists were worried that a parachute assisted landing would bee to violent and destroy the disks, I'd imagine that a non-decelerated high speed impact with the desert hardpan isn't a good thing.

It's very likely that the disks are not only broken, but that the science chamber was ruptured by the impact, contaminating the remains of the disks and destroying any chance at salvaging any useful science from this mission. If the science chamber breached (and it's practically a given that it is), it will be impossible to tell "sun" dust and atoms from "earth" dust and atoms.

It's a sad day for science.
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:28 AM
Response to Original message
12. "Hollywood stunt pilots???" What the hell?
Remember when NASA had pilots of its own on the payroll?

Jeebus, that's bad management!
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Xithras Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:42 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. Actually, it made sense
NASA doesn't have their own pilots, they have pilots from the Air Force that are "loaned" for testing purposes (I don't think NASA has ever had pilots that were strictly their own). This maneuver required a couple years of training to get right, and the military wasn't willing to loan its pilots to NASA for such a long, uninterrupted period of time.

Stunt pilots are highly skilled at what they do (it's a Darwinian thing...the bad ones generally kill themselves) and are used to performing tight maneuvers and aerial hookups. This project required that the pilots hook a slow moving target from a helicopter, and was well within their skill set.

Besides, this wasn't their fault...no pilot could have hooked a space capsule plunging toward the Earth at more than 200 MPH.
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Cicero Donating Member (412 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:43 AM
Response to Reply #13
14. Capt. Kirk could have done it...
KHAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Later,
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Heyo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 11:45 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. yep...
The used stunt pilots, I believe, to retreive the first few "Corona" film capsules way back in the day....

Heyo
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farmbo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:10 PM
Response to Reply #12
20. Saved $$s for NASA by filming the event for an episode of "CSI Miami"
eom
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MrBenchley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 01:14 PM
Response to Reply #20
26. LOL...
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Tracer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:05 PM
Response to Original message
17. It said in the newpaper this morning ...
... that even if the "skyhook" plan failed and the capsule crashed, the molecules from the disks (even if broken) could be recovered it just would be a lot harder.
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denverbill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:08 PM
Response to Original message
18. Picture.


Dang. It figured it would be in a million pieces and buried 20 feet deep.
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Gman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
19. Oops, sorry
I thought this was the Genesis Project that collided with earth. I forgot Kahn captured the bomb.
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Endangered Specie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:19 PM
Response to Original message
21.  Any bets on what the error in design was?
"Hey bob, are these here in inches or centimetres?; Bob? (zzzzzzz) ah, well, probably inches..."
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realcountrymusic Donating Member (999 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
22. "Stunt" is the right word

This whole thing was being stage-managed as a way to divert the news from a very bad day for Bush. That's why it has led all the news broadcasts. Hollywood stunt pilots -- makes it a sexy story. Look the other way, please, as the full AWOL picture comes into focus. Damn the media.

My question: what bad news for Bush was in that capsule? We know why small planes and small space probes really crash.

RCM
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TrogL Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 02:31 PM
Response to Reply #22
30. Your tinfoilhat's a little tight today
Lemme get this straight.

NASA launched a flight ten years ago so that it could crash TODAY to divert attention from Dubya's plight?
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realcountrymusic Donating Member (999 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #30
31. No
NASA, whose budget has been slashed and diced by the Bush admin, decided to up the PR value of the return of Genesis by letting it be known far and wide that they would be using "Hollywood stunt pilots" and letting the press film puff pieces of the pilots practicing and animations of the successful re-entry and recovery they predicted.

Sheesh. I was only kidding. But you have to admit that NASA has always been obsessed with PR and that it is especially interested in kissing the ass of this administration, and recovering from the Columbia debacle with the public. NASA=the gang that can't shoot straight. Also known as "need another seven astronauts."

RCM
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gulfcoastliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:50 PM
Response to Original message
23. Shit happens
I think investing in robotic space missions is great, and always a gamble - but the cost to benefit ratio is totally worth it.

Not so with human space travel. That shit is so expensive and there is absolutely nothing new we are learning. Watching crystals grow or tadpoles multiply isn't exactly cutting edge. NASA produces zero peer-reviewed publications in regards to human-space science. Bring down the spacestation and scrap the shuttles.


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Kolesar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 12:59 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. I love the deep space probes
I think that is such exciting science and discovery. OTOH, I don't think manned flights yield much. I think it is silly that they used manned missions just to place a satellite in orbit.
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DS1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 01:02 PM
Response to Original message
25. I wish I were there to piss on it, the useless fucks
/ having some issues with NASA at the moment
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The Stranger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 01:43 PM
Response to Original message
27. What genius put that plan together?
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 02:20 PM
Response to Original message
28. When it comes to failsafe plans, NASA seems to forget the safe part.
Edited on Wed Sep-08-04 02:21 PM by stickdog
What if, for example, they had collected precursors to life or even living cells out there?

Ooops!
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Gregorian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 02:25 PM
Response to Original message
29. Why can't we feed the starving children?
Who gives a shit about how this mess all started. Even if we knew, we'd still have to go to work tomorrow. It's all about JOBS. Just another employment agency.
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Senior citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-04 05:08 PM
Response to Original message
32. NASA is a jobs program

For the Nazi war criminal scientists we brought over here with Operation Paperclip.

If we spent a fraction as much making uninhabitable places here on earth habitable, we'd be better off.

Personally, I believe that we should become a viable rather than a malignant species before we think about metastacizing into space.

If things were cool here, going elsewhere would be fine with me. But the idea that we've messed things up here so badly that we have to look for other places to mess up, doesn't seem like a sound investment.

I rather hope that if we get too far, some more advanced creatures will surgically remove us.

I used to think science was a great thing. But we now have cures for diseases that we don't bother to produce because sick people can't afford them, so just figuring things out doesn't seem to necessarily help anybody. Now I think science is a great thing only if it comes from a cooperative or NGO instead of a university, corporation, or government, so that it can be used to make the world a better place, instead of just used for profit. It is very hard for me to care about outer space when I can look out my window and see a space on the sidewalk with a homeless person sleeping on it.

Most likely the administration told NASA that if they wanted any more money, they'd have to do something spectacular to help the GOP. And, as usual, it was a miserable failure.

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