Jan 31, 2009
Please join us at @whitelabelspace & feel free to comment/ask questions/make suggestions on how we can improve our chances of winning GLXP, what you would like to know about us, how we can improve our ongoing dialogue with you or how you can join or contribute to our project.
We would like to thank the 600 plus people that have followed us on twitter in the last 4 days. It seems at least that the word has managed to reach many of our blog readers. If you would like to follow our web 2.0 progress on other services, please use the "Contact" link in the navbar above or link here.
Content is sparse at this moment in time but you expect it to start to fill up soon as the details around our team & project become more public. Thanks for all the kind words of support we have received from many of you up to now. We look forward to hearing from you!
SPRITE-SAT has now started its mission to observe Sprites and Terrestrial Gamma-ray Flashes (TGF). The spacecraft was developed by the faculty and students of Tohoku Univeristy, with technical support from external mentors experienced in satellite development. Students played a leading role in the assembly and testing of the spacecraft, giving a unique opportunity for hands-on education in space science and space engineering.
Tohoku University, led by Professor Kazuya Yoshida, will use the experience gained from SPRITE-SAT to develop the rover for our Google Lunar X PRIZE (GLXP) mission, which will be a small rover capable of travelling at least 500m across the lunar surface and capturing hi-definition videos and photographs for transmission back to Earth.
The separation simulated by this test will take place after the first stage solid motor completes its burn and will be effected by a ring shaped explosive charge that cuts through the aluminium structure that joins the two stages together. Remember, this structure must be thick enough to transmit the high bending loads anticipated during the flight of this long slender rocket, called the "Stick" by some.
The test shown in this slow motion video was to check that the separation charge makes a clean break between the two stages. The shocks generated by the explosive charge were also measured during the test, and this will give important information enabling the engineers to design and layout the nearby equipment mounted in the launcher that must withstand the shock environment.
Earlier Post: When the Change the Ares-1 "Stick" into a Normal Rocket
Jan 30, 2009
Here at White Label Space HQ we started to discuss what other space related word we could mash together & then thought "why not crowd source it". So we're starting a competition to find the latest & greatest space related mash up words.
If you have a new #spacemashup word please add the tag #spacemashup & tweet it us @whitelabelspace.
We will give a mystery prize to the person that creates the best example.
If you get stuck for ideas then you can always use Naque's Word Mixer but just don't tell us or we will say you cheated :)
Todays winner is @_OM_ & here's the conversation.
@whitelabelspace: NASA Mars rover Spirit has a 'senior moment': Hum, looks like the long-lived Mars rovers are showing their age. .. http://tinyurl.com/dmol4g
@_OM_ @whitelabelspace "Marsheimers"
@_OM_ we owe you one for that great word, drop us a line & we'll send you something.
Jan 29, 2009
Jan 28, 2009
On the 28th of January 1986, I remember watching the news on TV some hours after the liftoff the Challenger and the feeling of disbelief that struck me as the rockets malfunctioned causing Challenger to disintegrate in thin air. The most horrific part of the TV reports that day was not the explosion itself but the look on the spectators faces as it slowly dawned on them that something had gone dreadfully wrong. A sad day in space history but one that proves that even the best laid plans can go wrong & space travel is never an easy task. "Failure is not an option" may have been NASA's motto but sometimes the chips are stacked against us & we must live with the cards that we are dealt.
Jan 27, 2009
"Moon" is a black comedy about a lone worker living on the Moon and tasked with mining Helium-3.
Jan 20, 2009
Previously in our Greatest Space Ads series:
- Part I - Heinekin on Mars
- Part II - Pizza Hut on the ISS
- Part III - Pepsi on MIR
- Part IV - Space Food Sticks
- Part V - Space Golf by Element 21
- Part VI - Martians with Hewlett Packard Printers
- Part VII - 7Up Spaceflight Competition
- Part VIII - Cosmofon's Signal Reaches Space
- Parrt IX - SONY and Space Tourism
Jan 19, 2009
For those who find that Twitter is just not quite cool enough, now a Japanese non-profit organisation called the Kansai Space Initiative (KSI) has set up space project that will allow microblogging via a space-based server in the form of its 50kg satellite called KaSpl-1, which is due for launch as a secondary payload in 2013. There will be an on-board camera pointing at a digital screen that can display emailed user messages while in orbit... useful hey?
The project will also feature a crowd-sourcing element in that anyone who is interested can pay 3,000 yen (US$33) to get their say in how the project is run. Presumably the launch costs will be paid by those contributions, meaning that about 3000 people will be needed to pay (calculation based on launch cost of $2000/kg times 50kg = $100,000).
How many twitter-holics will be interested financing this project?
(Sources: TechRadar.com article, and Dick's Rocket Dungeon)
Jan 11, 2009
The highlight of the experience is the simulated Mars mission where the students cooperate to execute a typical Mars surface mission involving role-playing activities dressed as astronauts and work in a simulated mission control center. Interacive software provides problem solving skills amongst the students, including a Martian dust storm that risks the safety of the astronauts.
VSSEC is a fantastic way to teach the Australian youth about the dream of space exploration and science and hopefully they will be inspired them to pursure careers in the space sector and support future government efforts to fund space activites.
Australia is the only nation in the top 25 GDP nations that doesn't have a government-funded space agency (see Senate Report). In fact, despite its well-educated population of over 21 million, Australia doesn't even have a central point of contact for foriegn nations interested in cooperating in space activities!
Not surprinsingly, there is a strong interest in Australia for the Google Lunar X PRIZE (GLXP). Team FredNET already attracted some Australian involvement, and we at White Label Space are also in discussions with many individuals and organizations in Australia who are interested to join our GLXP effort.
- Cooperative Research Centre for Satellite Systems (now disbanded)
- CSIRO Astronomy (and Space?) Division
- Australian Space Research Institute
National Space Society of Australia
- Australia Needs a Space Agency Already! (facebook group promoting a space agency)
- Australian National University Space Activities
- Centre for Hypersonics at the University of Queensland
- Australian Hypersonics Initiative
- Grollo Aerospace (and related info: , , )
- Engineers Australia National Committee in Space Engineering
Jan 7, 2009
Jan 2, 2009
After NASA lost all traces of information on the design and manufacturing of the lunar rover tires, they used his advice to recreate the original design in a project redeveloping new tires to support the NASA return to the Moon.
Follow this link to hear the complete story by NPR News.
Let's hope NASA is able to recover all the other knowledge gained during the Apollo program needed to for their return to the Moon. The need to re-capture that knowledge is surely a big driver for NASA to stick with its plans to return the Moon in the coming decade.
Jan 1, 2009
The Apollo Guidance Computer (AGC) was developed in the early 1960s by the MIT Instrumentation Laboratory, and could automatically controll all of the navigational systems onboard the Apollo spacecraft.