Category Archives: Science/Tech

Last month, Japanese Space Agency JAXA’s robotic Hyabusa2 spacecraft shot and deliberately bounced off asteroid 162173 Ryugu just to see what would happen. Hardcore. To wit:

Before impact, Hayabusa2 fired a small bullet into 162173 Ryugu to scattered surface material and increase the chance that Hayabusa2 would be able to capture some. Next month, Hayabusa2 will fire a much larger bullet into Ryugu in an effort to capture sub-surface material. Near the end of this year, Hayabusa2 is scheduled to depart Ryugu and begin a looping trip back to Earth, hopefully returning small pieces of this near-Earth asteroid in late 2020. Studying Ryugu could tell humanity not only about the minor planet‘s surface and interior, but about what materials were available in the early Solar System for the development of life.


A conceptual fuel cell electric vehicle envisaged by Toyota and the Japan Aerospce Exploration Agency (JAXA) designed for two passengers (four at a pinch) and good for up to 10,000km of lunar exploration.


The concept of ‘Warp Drive’ featured in Star Trek (and other science fiction) can be a little tricky to visualise, given that Warp 1 is the speed of light and Warp 6 is 392 times the speed of light.

Trekkie EC Henry compares the relative speeds of various ships from the Star Trek canon including the original Enterprise NX-01, subsequent Enterprises, Voyager and Defiant, racing them from Earth to the edge of the solar system,.


Public content images taken from the International Space Station collated into a meditative time-lapse tour of the globe by photographer and video artist Bruce W. Berry Jr.

Full screen for best effect.


On Sunday night, SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket into orbit from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

The rocket returned safely to earth but not before atmospheric conditions during the launch caused what appeared to be a spectacular nebula in the sky, prompting LA mayor Eric Garrett to issue a reassuring tweet.


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Images of the rings of Saturn pix 1,2: (outer (B) ring, pix 1,2; inner (A) ring, pic 3 and a detail of a density wave, pic 4) taken by NASA’s Cassini spacecraft, now in the midst of its ‘ring grazing’ phase as it moves in to study the outer and inner disks of orbiting ice and rock.

These images are twice the resolution of anything previously achievable and allow objects as small as 550m (about the height of the CN Tower in Toronto) to be discerned.

Full resolution photos here.

Previously: The Seas Of Titan