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  • Writer's pictureMatt Russell

#141 - Jonathan Fetter-Vorm - Apollo

Nine Summers ago, I went for a visit.

To see if the moon was green cheese.

When we arrived, people on earth asked: “Is it?”

We answered: “No cheese, no bees, no trees.”

There were rocks and hills and a remarkable view

Of the beautiful earth that you know.

It’s a nice place to visit, and I’m certain that you

Will enjoy it when you get to go.

My Vacation by Neil Armstrong

Obviously this weeks see the 50th anniversary of the Launch of Apollo 11 on the way to the moon.

Launch date July 16, 1969, 13:32:00 UTC

Rocket Saturn V SA-506

Launch site Kennedy Space Center LC-39A

But we’ll probably do a bit of a run down on that next week.

Guest Jonathan Fetter Vorm - and his most recent work of graphic nonfiction: MOONBOUND: Apollo 11 and the Dream of Spaceflight

Michael Collins “I know of no other book about Apollo 11 that is more enjoyable,"

OTD: Jean Picard dies 12 July 1682

Jean-Félix Picard (21 July 1620 – 12 July 1682) was a French astronomer and priest

The first person to accurately measure the circumference of the earth. Around 1670!

His margin of error with meticulous use of the latest equipment made his calculations 24 times more accurate than the great Tycho Brahe.

  • His book "Mesure de la Terre" was published in 1671.

  • Picard was the first to attach a telescope with crosswires to a 38 inch quadrant graduated in quarter minutes, a type of protractor type device

  • His Sextant had a radius of 6 feet, so not handheld like you see on ships,

  • Both had a micrometer screw adjustment

  • measuring one degree of latitude along the Paris Meridian using triangulation along thirteen triangles stretching from Paris to the clocktower of Sourdon

  • 110.46 km for one degree of latitude, which gives a corresponding terrestrial radius of 6328.9 km

  • Lived in amazing times, He was mates with Tycho Brahe, Newton, Huygens and rival Cassini

  • Collaborations;

  • Newton used Picards value of earth radius for his theory of gravitation

  • Newton used Picards work on mecurial phosphorencense for his study of light spectrums

  • Picard used Huygens pendulum clock to develop the standard method of measruing Right Ascension.

  • Picard continued to observe the Jovian moons with Ole Romer this work led to Romer's seminal calculation of the speed of light

  • He worked also hydraulics kept a steady supply of water flowing to the many ponds and fountains at Versailles

  • He also almost proved that the sun was the centre of the solar system when he noticed the abberation of light oof polaris in 1680, but this was mistaken as parralax a similar phenomena, and the significance was not really understood for a century.

  • There is a picard crater, but nobody in this section of the show doesn’t have one of those.

  • There is the disapointing Franklin Crater ...after Ben not ros the north east

  • There is the magnificent Russell Crater ...after Henry Norris, in the sounthwest (also one on mars)

  • PICARD was a satellite operated by CNES,... simultaneous measurement of the absolute total and spectral solar irradiance, the diameter and solar shape, and to the Sun's interior probing by the helioseismology method.launched from russia on a DNEPR rocket…

  • Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry is said to have named Picard for one or both of the twin brothers Auguste Piccard and Jean Felix Piccard, 20th-century Swiss scientists. Or was it this Picard?

All in all an absolute bang out, quiet, unassuming man, highly regarded by peers, passionate about precision

Great Article in Ars technica by Eric Berger, who’s been having long converstations with Buzz

Buzz thinks he has found a new and better way to get to the moon.

Bottom line Aldrin is promoting a total reusable architecture in cislunar space, nodes in low-Earth orbit and lunar orbit, tugs moving in between, mining propellant from the Moon and relying on smaller launch vehicles.

Is it even feasible that we could talk to this course?

Hayabusa 2 has landed on Ryugu!!! A few hours a ago!!

  • It is the second touchdown for the robotic Hayabusa-2 craft, which grabbed rocks from the asteroid in February.

  • After blasting a crater into Ryugu, it has returned to pick up fresh rubble.

  • A glimpse into the interior untouched by space or geology for 4.5 billion years!!!


Vega has had its first failure!!!

Approximately two minutes after the 15th Vega launcher’s liftoff, shortly after ignition of the second stage (Zefiro 23), a launcher anomaly occurred – leading to the premature end of the mission. And loss of the UAE military FalconEye1 sso 1.2 tonne satellite, built by Airbus and Thales, which would have been the 12th earth observation sat lofted by the Vega

Data analyses are in progress to clarify the reasons for this failure.

An independent inquiry commission will be set up in the coming hours

Heads of NASA’s human exploration program demoted!!!

NASA’s first and second in command of humans in space have been replaced at the same time. William Gerstenmaier and Bill Hill, have been moved at best sideways but essentially demoted at the same time by Bridenstein, “In an effort to meet this challenge” Astronaut, test pilot and aerospace engineer Kenneth Dwane "Sox" Bowersox - takes over! - When he launched on STS-73 at the age of 38 years and 11 months, he became the youngest person ever to command a Space Shuttle vehicle., 5 times into space, he also flew, STS-50 and sts-61 as pilot, sts-82 a hubble repair mission, STS-113 up only, and Soyuz TMA-1 back down. He worked for SpaceX as vice president of Astronaut Safety and Mission Assurance until late 2011

Couple of Apollo gems, covert hidden work!!!

Apollo 11. 1966 A bunch of British Scientists, 27, left for america to work on the ALSEP Apollo Lunar Surface Experiments Package at KSC. This became easier to deploy EASEP ...Early Apollo Surface Experiments Package. Any way on the EAsep, 7 of this team were given the opportunity to sign the bracket of one of the solar panels, Keith Wright FBIS, signed his name, UK and a small drawing of the Union Flag. even though the ink (contamination) was removed by cleaning, the scratches remain, so at tranquility base there is still a tiny UK flag.

Moon Museum - and piece of art by Andy Warhol ...nicely shared on the discord channel by legend Rob. - the first space art object? - This ceramic wafer was covertly attached to a leg of the Lunar Module Intrepid, and subsequently left on the Moon during Apollo 12, sculptor Forrest "Frosty" Myers. "My idea was to get six great artists together and make a tiny little museum that would be on the moon."

upper left is by Andy Warhol. He created a stylized version of his initials which, when viewed at certain angles, can appear as a rocket ship or a penis

Space X - Starhopper first untethered hop due now raptor engine fixed!!

Virgin Orbit carries out successful LauncherOne drop test

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