Author Archives: Matt Warren

Nikolay Sevastyanov, head of the Rocket and Space Corporation Energia, Russia has announced a plan to land on the moon for the purpose of mining for Helium-3. This is part of a new set of objectives for the International Space Statation that could make the ISS more prominent, not only for science experiments, but also as a platform for launching onward to the moon.

The Russians Have a goal of starting their mining by 2020. Helium-3 is a non radioactive isotope of helium that is extremely rare here on earth. On the moon however it is in greater abundance. Helium-3 could be used to generate electricty in a fusion nuclear reactor, a bucketful of the substance could jumpstart the creation of a fusion reactor which will have no radioactive by products.

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Russian space officicals have announced that the Soyuz replacement will be ready to launch in 2013, and will start bringing cosmonauts into space by 2015.

Soyuz capsules are currently used to send both people and supplies to the International Space Station exclusively while the shuttle is grounded. They have proven them selves to be very reliable craft.

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The European Space agency has done tests on a new design for an Ion propulsion engine which they expect will be 10 times more efficient then existing designs. The Ion electric engine are ideal for long deep space missions because the fuel source is much smaller than with conventional chemical rockets. They work by using electricity to generate an electromagnetic field that can propel charged particles (ions) at extremely high speeds.

The new engine can create an ion stream out of the engine at a speed of 210 km/sec. That’s 10 times faster than the engine on the SMART-1 probe, and 4 times faster than other current prototypes.

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Transmedia’s Glide Effortless is a new bread of Web based applications that offers a world of centralized data management and sharing potential, everything from pictures to Music to Videos and Documents. For $9.95/month you have access to 3Gb of storage which you can use to make your word documents accessible anywhere you go, or allow friends to view your on-line photo/video gallery.

With an innovative user interface and a slew of extra features still in the pipeline. I find Glide Effortless a compelling demonstration of what can be done with Web applications.

It’s an intriguing idea and one that Microsoft and Google are sure to be developing.

SpaceX, the company funded and founded by Elon Musk with $100 million from his personal fortune is ready to make space more accessible. Well, after waiting on the launch pad for several days they’ve had to delay the launch while they await for a fresh supply of liquid oxygen to arrive from Hawaii to their launch site on Kwajalein Atoll in the Pacific Ocean’s Marshall Islands.

SpaceX claims to be able to reduce the cost of flying into space to about half of current prices. That would position the company well in the satellite launch business, provided of course that the Falcon rockets can build a good success record.
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The 2005 International Robot Exhibition is taking place in the Tokyo International Exhibition Center (Tokyo Big Sight, Ariake, Japan). The Theme this year is “From Manufacturing to Daily Life.” With the continued development in robotics, especially over the last few years, they have been moving from the factory floor to the family room. The aim of this conference is to emphasize the harmonization of humans and robots, persue the range of the state of the art in robotic technology and help people understand how it contributes to the world.

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RIA Vovosti “A project for a flight around the Moon really exists and we are currently studying it,” said Alexei Krasnov, the head of the agency’s department of piloted programs. “This flight may cost some $100 million for a tourist.”
An 8 to 10 day trip involving a stop at the ISS. The trip will rendevous with a booster that can drive the Soyuz capsule to the Moon and back. One loop of the moon and it’s back to planet Earth. A memorable trip to be sure.

One of the perhaps unthought of repercussions of Google Video is that people will want to find a use for their webcams. The result is video any normal person would want to delete and burn almost immediately. But somehow it’s entertaining to watch, if not disturbing that people dance and sing for their computers, then distribute it to the world.

Who am I kidding… I need a video camera.