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  • Writer's pictureMatt Russell

#117 - Bernard Chemoul - Moon

The conquest of space is worth the risk of life. Our God-given curiosity will force us to go there ourselves because in the final analysis, only man can fully evaluate the moon in terms understandable to other men

Gus Grissom

Who lost his life 52 years ago this week in the Apollo 1 fire. 27th january 1957



Inspector General of Cnes.

Programme Manager of ARIANE 5 and VEGA( P80 and Support to IPT)

Deputy Director of Guiana Space Centre in charge of safety and security

Director of Guiana Space Centre

European Space Agency Head of Infrastructure project in the Directorate of space transportation, long term policy on the European Launch ranges

OTD Jan 25th

1736 – Joseph-Louis Lagrange, Italian-French mathematician and astronomer (d. 1813) - or Giuseppe Luigi Lagrangia was an Italian mathematician and astronomer with significant contributions to celestial mechanics.

“Lagrange, in one of the later years of his life, imagined that he had overcome the difficulty (of the parallel axiom). He went so far as to write a paper, which he took with him to the Institute, and began to read it. But in the first paragraph something struck him that he had not observed: he muttered: 'Il faut que j'y songe encore', and put the paper in his pocket.

― Augustus De Morgan

1995 – The Norwegian rocket incident: Russia almost launches a nuclear attack after it mistakes Black Brant XII, a Norwegian research rocket, for a US Trident missile.

Meteorite hits the Super Wolf Blood Moon during the elcipse!!! What a bonus!

  • Several shots from varies telescopes around the world.

  • Moon gets hit about every 3 days or so by objects over 10metres across. Many many more small hits of course.

Europe and the Moon.

  • ArianeGroup has signed a contract with ESA to examine the possibility of going to the Moon before 2025 with the aim of mining regolith. from which it is possible to extract water and oxygen, thus enabling an independent human presence on the Moon producing the fuel needed for more distant exploratory missions.

  • Ariane 64, the 4-booster version of Ariane 6, would enable this European mission to carry the equipment needed for a Moon landing

  • To mark the 50th anniversary of Man’s first steps on the Moon, ArianeGroup will be one of the partners in the “La lune, du voyage réel aux voyages imaginaires” (The Moon, a journey from the real to the imaginary) exhibition at the Grand Palais in Paris

  • ArianeGroup with Arianespace joined forces with a German start-up, PTScientists, which will provide the lunar lander, and a Belgian SME, Space Applications Services, which will provide the ground control facilities, the communications and the associated service operations.

  • This 100% European innovative consortium could thus provide services for the entire mission, from launch and moon transfer to moon landing and communication on the moon’s surface of the payloads needed for the mission.

  • “This first contract – symbolically announced on the day of a lunar eclipse – is a milestone for ArianeGroup, which has for a long time been working on technological proposals for space logistics servicing,” explained André-Hubert Roussel, CEO of ArianeGroup. “It is also an opportunity to recall the ability of Ariane 64 to carry out Moon missions for its institutional customers, with a payload capacity of up to 8.5 metric tons. In this year, marking the fiftieth anniversary of Man’s first steps on the Moon, ArianeGroup will thus support all current and future European projects, in line with its mission to guarantee independent, sovereign access to space for Europe.”

  • Part of ESA's comprehensive plan to make Europe a partner in global exploration in the next decade

  • ArianeGroup will be one of the patrons of the “The Moon, a journey from the real to the imaginary” exhibition, which will be held from 3 April to 22 July at the Grand Palais in Paris, looking at how human beings, in particular artists, have interacted with this celestial body from ancient times to the present day..

Other Euro luna projects

  • Orion, the NASA spacecraft, will bring humans farther than they have ever been before relying on the European Service Module to return humans to the Moon and take advantage of the new technology for human space transportation.

  • Luna-Resurs is a partnership with the Russian agency Roscosmos that will carry European technology to land precisely and safely on the Moon and to drill into the surface to extract and analyse samples of the lunar terrain. looking at how we could extract and process local resources into useful products and services, such as drinkable water or breathable oxygen on the Moon.

  • The Heracles mission could take of in 2028 to allow us to gain knowledge on human-robotic interaction while landing a spacecraft on the Moon to collect samples with a rover operated from an orbiting lunar gateway and send the samples back to Earth.

Teach with the moon.

Why does the Moon look bigger at times?

Due to its elliptical orbit.

Matt thinks a bigger affect is the moon illusion.

Space word of the Week!

Moon illusion

The Moon illusion is an optical illusion which causes the Moon to appear larger when nearer the horizon than it does at it's zenith. ...but why?

A few candidates

Atmospheric Refraction; very dubious and not taken seriously since 17th century.

Apparent distance hypothesis

Judging the distance of an object depends on there being an uninterrupted sequence of intervening bodies between the object and the observer; however, since there are no intervening objects when the Moon is high, the perceived distance is too short and the Moon appears smaller than on the horizon, tautological:it explains perceptions as consequences of perceptions: the moon looks farther away because it looks larger. Almost all people say the horizon moon looks both larger and closer than the zenith moon

Relative size hypothesis

The perceived size of an object depends not only on its retinal size but also on the size of objects in its immediate visual environment; or the classic Ebbinghaus illusion,

Angle of regard hypothesis

Looking through one's legs at the horizon moon reduces the illusion noticeably, but this may be because the image on the retina is inverted. Raising the eyes or tilting the head when in an upright posture gives only a very small reduction in the illusion

Matt took a picture of a huge full moon over Guildford cathedral on Tuesday morning, but on my camera it looked tiny. This really demonstrates the moon illusion, if you see a big horizon moon hold up your smart phone and see how tiny it looks on your screen, none of the above we think satisfies that descrepency!!!!

Musk’s starship get’s blown over

Bezoz with more luck (except his divorce!!)

10th Flight of New Sheppard total success, very much on for a late 2019 commercial launch to start its actual mission of space tourism.

Achieved 66miles a couple over that Karmen Line.

Boing Crew flight change!!

Replacing Eric Boe on the Starliner test flight will be veteran NASA and ISS astronaut Edward “Mike” Fincke.

Boe has been stood down due to a medical issue, rare,but not without precedent. (like Apollo 13, Ken Mattingly just three days before launch when he was exposed to the German measles, lost his place.) Straight Swap he will replace Fincke as the assistant to the chief for commercial crew in the astronaut office at NASA’s Johnson Space Center

Israeli Beresheet Moon lander

  • On its way to Cape Canaveral Florida for mid-February launch

  • SpaceIL’s privately developed Moon lander, Beresheet, to launch aboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket as one of at least three other payloads

  • Beresheet will spend two months travelling to the Moon ahead of a touchdown in Mare Serenitatis ("Sea of Serenity") a lunar mare located to the east of Mare Imbrium, by April.

Black Arrow returns to the uk

The actual booster that launched the Prospero satellite, The UK's only orbital launch is brought home by Skyrora this week.

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