Carnival of Space 450

1. Universe Today – Bold Euro-Russian Expedition blasts free of Earth en route to Mars in search of Life’s Indicators

Artists concept of ExoMars spacecraft separation from Breeze M fourth stage. Credit: ESA

The cooperative Euro-Russian ExoMars 2016 expedition successfully fired its upper stage booster one final time on Monday evening, March 15.

The vehicle is in “good health” with the solar panels unfurled, generating power and on course for the 500 Million kilometer (300 million mile) journey to Mars.

2. Universe Today – 90 Years ago Goddard’s Liquid Fuelled Rocket launched spaceflight

3. Universe Today – Messier 7 (M7) – The Ptolemy Cluster

4. The Lunar and Planetary Institute announces a new Chicxulub educational website on the 25th anniversary of the discovery.

5. Vega00 – Comet P/2016 BA14 will have a very close encounter with our planet: only 9 LD -lunar distances-

6. Brown spaceman – Why the Orion Nebula or M42 is one of the most famous and beautiful nebulae out there.

7. Brown spaceman – The beautiful Lagoon Nebula at the universe’s service!

8. Brown spaceman – 200 light years across is the incredible NGC 6188 emission nebula. Here’s a closer look at it.

9. Fraknoi – The longest eclipse ever found — description of a system of two stars, where an eclipse last 3.5 years and repeats every 69 years!

10. ryanmarciniak – Fake color images reveal details that make astronomical images truly spectacular. How do image processors help science communicators?

11. armaghplanet – We live in a galaxy – a star city with several hundred billion residents. Moreover, we know our Milky Way is a spiral galaxy, but just how have astronomers discovered the structure of our galactic home?

12. Nextbigfuture – NASA is in the process of getting another peer reviewed EMDrive paper published

Paul March indicated on the NASA Spaceflight forum that NASA Eagleworks is getting another EMDrive paper through peer review.

Glenn Research Center offered to replicate the experiment in a hard vacuum if Eagleworks manages to reach 100 µN of thrust, because the GRC thrust stand cannot measure forces lower than 50 µN.

Eagleworks later announced a plan to upgrade their equipment to higher power levels, use vacuum-capable RF amplifiers with power ranges of up to 125 W, and to design a new tapered cavity analytically determined to be in the 0.1 N/kW range. The test article will be subjected to independent verification and validation at Glenn Research Center, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

13. Nextbigfuture – Spiderfab, Expandable stations and Reusable rockets could make affordable Bezos vision of millions working in orbit

Bigelow Aerospace has designed 2100 cubic meter expandable space station modules which might be launchable by a slightly refined Spacex Heavy.
The larger planned Mars colonization transport (MCT) would be able to launch modules that are three to five times larger.
Fuel could be launched and stored at fuel depots in orbit. This would enable more cargo to be moved to Mars with refueling in orbit and other locations in space.

Spacex could launch 100 Bigelow 2100 cubic meter modules for about $1 billion using two reusable Spacex Heavies over as little as one year (one launch per week). Blue Origin might also be able to make larger reusable rockets.

This would be 200,000 cubic meters of volume. This would be enough for 2000 people with the same facilities per person as the Hercules resupply depot design.

Spacex could launch 1000 Bigelow 6000 cubic meter modules in one year.

This would be 600,000 cubic meters of volume. This would be enough for 6000 people with the same facilities per person as the Hercules resupply depot design.

Reaching 1 million people in orbit would be 170 of the one thousand expandable modules. 6000 people is a bit more than the number of people in a large aircraft carrier. The Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas has 3309 rooms and suites.

1 million people would be like 170 large light weight versions of cruise ships, hotels or air craft carrier structures in orbit.