Carnival of Space 192

The Carnival of Space 192 is up at Vega00.

Parallel Spirals looksat the India Space Research Organizations 2010 Annual report They look at the space access component of this report which is titled, “Space Transportation”.

2011 will see only two flights of the PSLV. These are the PSLV-C16 carrying Resourcesat-2, YOUTHSAT and XSat-1 and PSLV-C17 carrying GSAT-12.

GSLV Mk-III – ISRO has been building up towards the development of this Medium Lift Vehicle capable of delivering 5 tons to GTO.

Ian ONeill looks at the Tevatron discovery

“The “Bump”: The obvious blue line represents an “excess” of particles that deviate from the Standard Model (red line). Although it is far from conclusive, this excess could represent “new physics” — an unpredicted particle or new gauge boson carrying a new force of nature (from the publication “Invariant Mass Distribution of Jet Pairs Produced in Association with a W boson in ppbar Collisions at sqrt(s) = 1.96 TeV”). Credit: CDF Collaboration.

After colliding protons and antiprotons in the Tevatron over and over again, a peculiar pattern started to emerge. After the proton-antiproton collisions took place, a flash of energy caused other particles to form. The vast majority of these post-collision particles were expected to appear, abiding by the theoretical framework of the Standard Model.

However, a very small number of particles were produced that appear to originate beyond the physics predicted by the Standard Model.

It is what is known as a “three-sigma event,” and this refers to the statistical certainty of a given result. In this case, this result has a 99.7 percent chance of being correct (and a 0.3 percent chance of being wrong). “Three-sigma isn’t seen as a ‘discovery,'” Butterworth said in a previous Discovery News article. “Really, a ‘five-sigma’ is classed as a discovery. Five-sigma is the ‘Gold Standard.'”

Vega00 looks at exoplanet discovery methods

There are currently four different techniques in searching exoplanets:
– Radial velocity
– Direct imaging of the exoplanet
– Transits
– Microlensing

Radial Velocity – This technique measures very precisely the radial velocity of the motion of a star due to the existence of a planet. The most successful experiment is the use of the HARPS 1 instrument (High Accuracy Radial velocity Planetary Search project) of the Geneva Observatory, coupled to 3.6 meter La Silla telescope. Other investigation using this technique is MARVELS 2 (Multi object APO Radial Velocity Exoplanet Large-area-Survey), with a precision of 12 ms-1. It will search giant gaseous planets with orbital periods from hours to 2 years, and masses between 0.5 and 10 Jupiter masses. It will analyze 11,000 stars and it is expected to detect between 150 and 200 new exoplanets.

Direct imaging of exoplanets – This is a complex technique due to the bright of the star blocks us from observing the planet. To avoid this problem are being used the coronagraphs.

HiCIAO will be coupled in 8.2 meter Subaru telescope with the objective of searching planets with masses between 1 and 13 Jupiter masses, and protoplanetary discs. Using adaptive optics and a coronagraph it will study 500 solar type near stars. Its method will consist in divide the image into 2 or more images and use different polarization planes or spectral filters that allow to distinguish faint objects.

NACO also will find exoplanets using adaptive optics and a coronagraph coupled to VLT. It will find exoplanets with temperature between 130 and 800 K, and between 1 and 25 Jupiter masses.

Transits This technique is based on the detection of fluctuations in the bright of the star when an exoplanet is in the same plane of the star and the observer, and transits between the star and the observer.

Kepler 11 satellite is a 0.95 m Schmidt space telescope with a 42 CCDs photometer, takes images with a field not reached with other telescopes. Kepler is searching Earth-like planets in habitability zone, measuring 100,000 main sequence stars to increase the probability. It is expected to detect over 700 new exoplanets.


This technique is the latest and more advanced, that consists in observe the microlensing events due to exoplanets.

REX (Robotic Exoplanet discovery network) is a British project of three 2 m robotized telescopes, in three different places (Chile, South Africa and Australia) to observe 24 hours. It will search Earth-like planets in 4 AU orbits, studying 1,000 microlensing events known. Also it will study transits.

GEST 1(Galactic Exoplanet Survey Telescope) space telescope will search, looking at galactic centre, exoplanets between 2 and 3 AU orbits and with low mass, around F, G and K type stars. It will have a 1 to 1.5 m primary mirror.

Nextbigfuture provided the article on how the Spacex Falcon Heavy would be suited to launching a large Bigelow inflatable space station.

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