SpaceX, first try at a return much closer to a success than a failure!

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Falcon 9 first stage burns an engine during a controlled descent to the Pacific Ocean. (Credit: SpaceX)

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Falcon 9 first stage in a controlled descent toward the Pacific Ocean. At this point, the stage was about 3 meters (9.8 feet) above the water. (Credit: SpaceX)

“SpaceX then lit the center engine for a single engine burn. That relight also went well, however we exceeded the roll control authority of the attitude control thrusters. This particular stage was not equipped with landing gear which could have helped stabilize the stage like fins would on an aircraft. The stage ended up spinning to a degree that was greater than we could control with the gas thrusters on board and ultimately we hit the water relatively hard.

from the picture above it looks like it came pretty damn close! WOW!

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WIRED: ?cute? eBimmer with a dimmer

20131015-072653.jpg20131015-072701.jpg20131015-072708.jpgThe i3 is BMW’s Ultimate Electric Driving Machine: BY DAMON LAVRINC 07.29.13
Wired question the “new age refrigerator” look but I like it.
Continues the trend showing that you need to design from the ground up…and know what you are doing…and what you want to emphasize when designing eCars.

Cygnus docking signals another major eSpace success on the same day!

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An Orbital Sciences Cygnus cargo ship reached the International Space Station early Sunday and was captured by the lab’s robot arm. The successful rendezvous marked a major milestone for NASA and a program to fund development of commercial cargo carries to replace capacity lost with the space shuttle’s retirement. (Credit: NASA TV)

WIRED | Why Apple Nailed ‘it’ again

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4 Big Ideas in the New iPhones That No One’s Talking About : BY KYLE VANHEMERT : 09.11.13

Not sure no ones talking about them but they are not looking at it from the right perspective…or not consistently. The 5C points out that personalization is a critical element but does not require a plethora of hardware versions to accomplish. Look at where Google/Motorola went with their customizable shell. The 5S finger print sensor, activity monitoring sub system and stepped up camera all point to the iPhones purpose as the center of your digital life.

Apple continues to lead even as the handset proliferation continues apace. The phone you own if you are serious these days is the iPhone and while others will backfill in the wake its Apple that still leads.

The 5 family is probably still in line with the concepts that Apple evolved under Jobs’ leadership. Not to say the team at the helm are only turning the crank. It’s also not to say that Apple couldn’t stumble, could miss a new wave, but right now they are in the lead and I don’t see much in the way of useful Tech they have missed yet. The iWatch and iTV, so far as I can see, have no traction because the technology is not here to make them special in the way Apple needs for their brand identity.

The iPhone/iOS is the anti Android and it will remain that way, while others like Nokia/MS, Motorola/Android and I think Samsung, SONY and even maybe HTC and LG, will evolve towards a more Apple like model. In the end the serious contenders will be variations on the Apple model with highly secure products that are your digital core.

Micro Thrust

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L. Brad King’s prototype of a ferrofluid ion thruster. When subjected to magnetic field, the points of the crown arise from a ring-shaped trench circling a one-inch block of aluminum. (Credit: Sarah Bird)

then an electric field is applied which makes the ‘points’ extend to nano scale and then emit ionic molecules at high velocity. Very neat, self forming, self healing, some scaling details to work out but this looks very promising. Another tech breakthrough from Air Force R&D.

Antimatter in space flight relevant quantities in 5 years!? Hot stuff!

AUGUST 30, 2013 Care of: Carnival of Space #317Billionaire Peter Thiel funds Positron Dynamics who are developing a 10 microgram per week antimatter factory

For planetary, early interstellar precursor and simple omniplanetary applications, ACMF (antimatter catalyzed fusion) exhibits the best performance. The reference case of a 1-year human round-trip mission to Jupiter with a 10 to 100 metric ton (mT) payload requires an antimatter quantity of 1 to 10 micrograms (μg). It appears as though this requirement could drop into the 1 to 10 ng range for payloads consistent with unmanned, planetary missions.

So fuel for a trip to Jupiter (in one year!) every week.

Combating the ‘hot’ with cold

20130901-101708.jpgCold storage: A freeze wall created for a construction project by the company SoilFreeze
How the Fukushima Ice Barrier Will Block Radioactive Groundwater

Japan plans to stop leaking radioactive groundwater at Fukushima with an underground wall of ice. Here’s how it would work. … Vertical pipes are to be drilled or driven into the ground at one-meter intervals, creating what looks like an array of sub-soil fence posts. Fourteen 400-kilowatt refrigeration plants would pump -20 °C to -40 °C coolant down each pipe to absorb heat from the ground, producing an expanding cylinder of frozen earth.

In roughly six weeks, those cylinders would fuse together to form a continuous barrier that keeps groundwater out and contaminants in. The result would be a solid barrier from the surface extending approximately 95 feet down to meet a low-permeability layer of clay and rock. And while it would require long-term chilling to endure, the wall is immune to power outages lasting days or weeks. “It would take months or years to thaw the wall out,” says Daniel Mageau, vice president and design engineer for Seattle-based contractor SoilFreeze.