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Volcanic tunnels may provide shelter on the Moon


We have already been to the Moon several times, but we need to overcome more obstacles for not just to get there, but to stay there as well. Russian scientists say the surface of the Moon may help us in this endeavor.

 

Last Updated (Wednesday, 26 October 2011 10:43)

 

LADEE will talk with lasers

Satellites and space probes currently communicate the Earth and with each other via radio waves. Despite the innovative solutions for higher data transfer rates and compression techniques though, NASA's capabilities will not keep pace with the needs of future instruments and human spaceflight. The solution is to augment the current radio-based systems with optical technology. Laser-based communications will increase the data rates by anywhere between 10 to 100 times. New technologies must be tested though, before trusting critical operations on them.

Last Updated (Saturday, 22 October 2011 16:09)

 

The 2011 GLXP Hardware Reel is here!

The X-Prize Foundation assembles a neat video every year about the developments and progress of the various GLXP teams. The latest Hardware Reel features 13 teams, this time including us too. And the small Teve rover is just the beginning, the next reel will hopefully see our Iteration 2 (Hunveyor-15) rover being on the move!

 

Last Updated (Friday, 07 October 2011 09:35)

 

How is GRAIL going to measure the Moon?

NASA's twin satellites were successfully launched in early September to map the Moon's gravitational field and internal structure. The Delta-II rocket carrying the space probes lifted from Cape Canaveral on the 10th of September, after a two-day delay. This was the last start of the legendary launch vehicle from the East Coast and most likely the penultimate overall. The Delta-II lifted a lot of GPS and Iiridum birds and numerous scientific satellites, space probes and telescopes, including all American Mars probes since the nineties. Only a single one of its 146 launches was a complete failure although that one produced very spectacular fireworks.

Last Updated (Saturday, 01 October 2011 11:20)

 

So how old is the Moon then?

Our Moon formed about 4.5 billion years ago when the proto-Earth was blasted by another, somewhat smaller but quite large protoplanet. The excavated material that remained in orbit around the Earth then coalesced into the Moon. The time of the formation can be quite reasonably determined through the dating of the oldest rocks that came into existence. As the material of the Moon cooled down, lighter minerals floated to the top and formed a solid crust, creating the rocks that tell the story of the first times. According to calculations, the upper layers solidified in only a thousand years, creating a lid that slowed down the cooling of the lower layers dramatically to ten million years. Though events like massive impacts and volcanism may've altered the age of the surface materials here and there, almost all of the oldest rocks formed during these mere ten million years. Or did they?

Rock sample 60025, collected by the crew of Apollo 16, while still on the Moon.

Last Updated (Tuesday, 30 August 2011 16:03)

 
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