Arianespace Launches VV13 – Replay

Arianespace launched an Earth observation satellite for the Kingdom of Morocco, the MOHAMMED VI – B. The launch took place yesterday (20 Nov 2018)at Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana

has successfully launched the MOHAMMED VI – B Earth observation satellite, developed for the Kingdom of Morocco.

Yes, I did attempt a live feed and a live feed was available, however I have had quite a few issues fouling my attempts. I’m afraid this computer is on the way out. For now things seem to be running.

Io Rising

The JunoCam submissions are getting better and better. Having the talent of Gerald Eichstädt and Justin Cowart helps a great deal.

I’ll keep muddling along with my efforts, need to upgrade my computer I’m afraid. It’s fun all the same.

NASA: Jupiter’s moon Io rises just off the horizon of the gas giant planet in this image from NASA’s Juno spacecraft. Slightly larger than Earth’s moon, Io is the most volcanically active world in the solar system.

This color-enhanced image was taken at 2:26 p.m. PDT (5:56 p.m. EDT) on Oct. 29, 2018 as the spacecraft performed its 16th close flyby of Jupiter. At the time, Juno was about 11,400 miles (18,400 kilometers) from the planet’s cloud tops, at approximately 32 degrees south latitude.

Citizen scientists Gerald Eichstädt and Justin Cowart created this image using data from the spacecraft’s JunoCam imager. This image has been rotated approximately 155 degrees from the source image.

JunoCam’s raw images are available for the public to peruse and to process into image products at: http://missionjuno.swri.edu/junocam.

More information about Juno is at: http://www.nasa.gov/juno and http://missionjuno.swri.edu.

Image Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS/Gerald Eichstädt/Justin Cowart

Antares Launch

The image above – click it for a larger version – showing the Antares launch over Washington DC was NASA’s Image of the Day recently. Little wonder, what a great shot, I wanted to share it in case you missed it.

Here’s the caption from NASA: The Northrop Grumman Antares rocket, with Cygnus resupply spacecraft onboard, is seen above the Thomas Jefferson Memorial in Washington, DC, on Nov. 17, 2018. The rocket launched from Pad-0A at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia that morning. Northrop Grumman’s 10th contracted cargo resupply mission for NASA to the International Space Station will deliver about 7,400 pounds of science and research, crew supplies and vehicle hardware to the orbital laboratory and its crew.

Photo Credit: NASA/Aubrey Gemignani

A New Crater Discovery

Wow, this is very cool!

NASA/Steve Cole – An international team of researchers, including a NASA glaciologist, has discovered a large meteorite impact crater hiding beneath more than a half-mile of ice in northwest Greenland. The crater — the first of any size found under the Greenland ice sheet — is one of the 25 largest impact craters on Earth, measuring roughly 1,000 feet deep and more than 19 miles in diameter, an area slightly larger than that inside Washington’s Capital Beltway.

The group, led by researchers from the University of Copenhagen’s Centre for GeoGenetics at the Natural History Museum of Denmark worked for the past three years to verify their discovery, which they initially made in 2015 using NASA data. Their finding is published in the Nov. 14 issue of the journal Science Advances.

“NASA makes the data it collects freely available to scientists and the public all around the world,” said Joe MacGregor, a NASA glaciologist at Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, who became involved in the investigation in its early stages. “That set the stage for our Danish colleagues’ ‘Eureka’ moment.”

The researchers first spotted the crater in July 2015, while they were inspecting a new map of the topography beneath Greenland’s ice sheet that used ice-penetrating radar data primarily from NASA’s Operation IceBridge — a multi-year airborne mission to track changes in polar ice — and earlier NASA airborne missions in Greenland. The scientists noticed an enormous, previously unexamined circular depression under Hiawatha Glacier, sitting at the very edge of the ice sheet in northwestern Greenland.
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Launching Cygnus NG-10 – Replay

Nice launch, here is the replay. I was going to leave the live video up for the continuing coverage but decided not. If anything is not going as it should I will up date to be sure.

Delayed from yesterday here is the Cygnus NG-10 cargo-spaceship

Rocket: Antares 230 Rocket.

Launch site: Wallops Flight Facility from Virginia

Destination: International Space Station

Launch time 09:01 UTC

Space X Launches Es’hail-2 – REPLAY

Another great launch from SpaceX. This time around it was Es’hail-2 mission for Qatar and is put communications satellite into orbit.

If you missed the LIVE launch don’t feel too bad, I did also; but thankfully I have both power and internet back!

There are a couple more launches coming right up too so check back, yes four launches in almost as many days.

Tomorrow: Cygnus cargo-spaceship to the ISS, time 09:01 UTC / 04:01 EST

Space Weather – Coronal Holes

Here is a look at the coronal hole providing an increase in solar wind and the sporadic aurora

There is a sunspot group now too; called Sunspot 2726 it is about centered on the solar disk (not seen in this image) and a plage in the northern mid-latitudes starting to rotate around the disk.  Aside from being an intensely hot area in the solar chromosphere and can be associated with a sunspot, a plage is a great Scrabble word.

The image shown is from ESA/ROB via helioviewer.org. I encourage you to check out helioviewer.org.

ESA:   This image show dramatic dark areas in the Sun’s corona and was acquired by the SWAP instrument on ESA’s Proba-2 mission at midday on Wednesday, 7 November.

The dark areas are ‘coronal holes’ – areas of open magnetic field in the Sun’s corona that emit charged particles as high-speed solar wind that spreads into space.

When it reaches Earth, this solar wind can affect the functioning of satellites in orbit.

The nice thing is that these are predictable events, as we can see these gaps or holes on the solar disc before the high-speed wind hits Earth.

ESA’s future Lagrange mission will significantly improve our ability to detect these holes and forecast solar wind effects, providing a lead time of three to five days.

Space Weather

If you are out and about after dark and you are in higher latitudes (meaning towards the poles) northern and southern hemisphere and have clear skies keep an eye out for an aurora. We have had sporadic aurora over the past couple days thanks to a coronal hole on the Sun. Disturbances in the geomagnetic field due to strong earthquakes may be another possible aurora source.

ESA: Earth’s magnetosphere is a region of space dominated by our planet’s magnetic field. The magnetosphere protects Earth from most of the solar wind, a flow of charged particles streaming out from the Sun.

However, some particles are able to penetrate this shield and reach the ionosphere, giving rise to space weather effects, including the beautiful polar lights, or auroras, as well as geomagnetic storms. Space weather has a real impact on our activities on Earth, and poses a significant risk to space-farers – robotic and human alike.

Various space missions, including ESA’s Cluster and Swarm, are investigating the magnetic environment around the Earth and how it interacts with the solar wind.

Meanwhile, Sun-watching satellites like the ESA/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), located at the L1 point between Earth and the Sun, monitor coronal mass ejections leaving the Sun and measure the speed of the solar wind 1.5 million km away from our planet, about 1 hour before it reaches Earth.

Image: ESA