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New Horizons: Pluto and Beyond

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Bozo Erectus, Jan 17, 2006.

  1. Bozo Erectus

    Bozo Erectus Master Baker

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    Lift off at 11am Eastern
    http://www.newscientistspace.com/article.ns?id=dn8587

    Hope Im still around in 2015 when it reaches Pluto, but for me, the big story is that the moon is now only 9 hours away.
     
  2. IglooDude

    IglooDude Enforcing Rule 34 Retired Moderator Supporter

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    A little like traveling by commercial airlines now - the planes are pretty fast, but most of the travel time is taken getting to the airport, sitting/standing in the airport, or sitting on the tarmac awaiting clearance for takeoff. :(

    But anyway, yeah - 5G's isn't excessive for healthy adults, and 9 hours isn't bad at all. Can any of the rocket scientists around here compute what the Mars trip would optimally be at those speeds/accelerations?
     
  3. skadistic

    skadistic Caomhanach

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    Can you say weekend trip to the moon? Ten years isn't to far away. But why send a probe to Pluto? Cant we just aim Hubble at it and take some photos? While it is cool I could thnk of better places to spend the money in space exploration like cooler plants such as Saturn.
     
  4. thetrooper

    thetrooper Schweinhund

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    Ugh - forget that.
     
  5. Bozo Erectus

    Bozo Erectus Master Baker

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    If Jupiter is one year away, Id guess Mars would take under 6 months. If the moon is only 9 hours away, its a crime not to put a permanent scientific outpost there.
     
  6. Bozo Erectus

    Bozo Erectus Master Baker

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    Pluto is only the first part of the mission, after that its heading into the mysterious Kuiper Belt, where we've lately been discovering large bodies. Xena (one of the recently discovered objects), is actually bigger than Pluto, and has its own moon 'Gabrielle'.
     
  7. betazed

    betazed Seeking...

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    Hate to break it to you the moon is not 9 hours away. :)

    The Pluto probe will basically zip past it accelerating most of the way so it can make it to moon in 9 hours.

    For a human travel the fastest would be to accelerate half the way at maximum acceleration then slow down the next half at maximum decceleration and then go into orbit around the moon, which will require at least one orbit of travel around the moon.

    I doubt it can be done in less than a few days.
     
  8. Abaddon

    Abaddon Deity

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    FFFFFfffffZZZzzzzooooooommmmmmmmmm....!

    Bloody hell thats fast. Certainly a blink and you will miss it! Imagine what kinda strenght that rocket needs to have not to fall appart.
     
  9. Hundegesicht

    Hundegesicht Manly Studmuffin

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    The moon has no atmosphere, meaning you can't just use air friction to slow the decent to the surface like we do with shuttles here on Earth. Unless you want your astronaughts crashing into the surface of the moon at 13 miles a second, you'd have to have enough fuel to deccelerate to a low enough speed to make a landing.

    Being able to deccelerate after the rocket is launched would require more fuel, which in turn means more mass, which would make it so the rocket needs much more energy to reach the same speeds. The Pluto rocket in question was built entirely for the purpose of reaching a very high volocity, but is, in fact, incapable of slowing itself down. (Not that it needs to)
     
  10. Bozo Erectus

    Bozo Erectus Master Baker

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    Huh? The article says it'll take 9 hours to reach the moon. How is 9 hours not really 9 hours?:confused:

    @Hundegesicht, ah ok I think I blunderstand.
     
  11. Hundegesicht

    Hundegesicht Manly Studmuffin

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    In outer space? None, really. I'm currently travelling much faster than that...
     
  12. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    But, if we ever need to bomb lunarians, then we're golden.

    I'd like to remind everyone that there's an asteroid that comes within four lunar distances of Earth. If we could nudge it a bit, we could set it into orbit of Earth, which would make building an orbit base/factory MUCH easier.
     
  13. Hundegesicht

    Hundegesicht Manly Studmuffin

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    Betazed could probably prove it mathematically, if you want. Something to do with the acceleration of gravity times the mass of the vessel taking into account the friction caused by air in Florida and the potential energy output and efficiency of the fuel being burnt by the rockets in question, to the power of the number of molecules in Leonard Nimoy's butt during the Star Trek convention in 1993.

    Sadly, my understanding of physics ends where the math begins.
     
  14. Aphex_Twin

    Aphex_Twin Evergreen

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    Nevermind...
     
  15. dragokatzov

    dragokatzov Warlord

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    yes, it is, with the net rocket NASA is using
     
  16. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    That seems long. You mean with acceleration and decel, right? Even then, it seems wrong. I thought it would be much shorter than that, with constant accel.
     
  17. betazed

    betazed Seeking...

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    The article is correct. New Horizons will reach moon in 9 hours. But it will not stop at moon. It will zip by it.

    But if you want to go to moon you want not only reach it you want to stop at the moon. That means you cannot accelerate all the way. You have to speed up and then slow down (something that new horizons does not have to do). Also you cannot speed up (or slow down) as fast as you want since humans can only take so many g's for a sustained period of time. So you cannot make it to moon in 9 hours although New Horizons can.

    I guess I should have clearer in my post.

    @dragokatzov: Which rocket do you have in mind?
     
  18. Aphex_Twin

    Aphex_Twin Evergreen

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    You're right. It should be ~ 14 hours with constant accel.
    (mixed up minutes with hours)
     
  19. El_Machinae

    El_Machinae Colour vision since 2018 Retired Moderator

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    So, how long would the trip take at a more leisurely .5 g acceleration?
     
  20. betazed

    betazed Seeking...

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    Well, technically speaking you won't need to land the main craft (or slow it down to landing speeds). You just need it to slow down sufficiently and "miss" the moon at a proper angle so that it goes into an orbit (just like all teh Apollo missions did).
     

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