Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Space News

Interesting article on the Pioneer anomaly. Two space probes currently exiting our solar system are slowing down for reasons no one can fully explain. The article goes through some of the latest thinking and research as to why this is happening.

Update on developing liquid mirror telescopes on the moon. There’s been some very intriguing developments here that make this very plausible in the next 10-15 years.

Bigelow Aerospace will (hopefully) launch Genesis II tomorrow. This is their second inflatable space module design (the third is already in the works). The first was inflated successfully, sent back some cool pictures and demonstrated the feasibility of inflatable modules for spacecraft design. More information is at the Bigelow website, including some proposals for human-capable modules.

Op-Ed from UK’s Independent on the dangers of attempting to contact alien civilizations (via Speculist. Considering my previous concerns, I’m glad more people starting to ask questions about whether it is a good idea to brazenly announce our existence to the galaxy at large. It’s not that I think we should hide. What disturbs and worries me is that this decision is being made by a few idealistic scientists without any larger deliberation or say-so from the rest of humanity. One of Western civilizations greatest features is our debating of controversial issues and ideas. This act could change human civilization but the decision is being made for us without an appropriate level of debate.

My goodness, these are interesting times, aren’t they?

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