Author Topic: Wonderful Photographs from Mars  (Read 60285 times)

Offline JayUtah

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #180 on: October 05, 2014, 03:59:49 PM »
It's pretty clear by now Neil Burns has absolutely no clue how spacecraft work.  The notion of Earth launch systems based on "springs" would be especially entertaining, if not for Burns' shameless trampling all over the grave of Ellison Onizuka by claiming his ghost "confirmed" to him that his spring idea was the way to go.

I live in Utah and I visit Nevada about six times a year.  No part of Nevada looks anything like the Moon or Mars.

I'm still boggling at the notion that someone who claims expertise in physics doesn't understand how telemetered photographs travel at the speed of light while spacecraft in transfer trajectories move substantially slower.  I literally know children who have a more accurate grasp of physics than Neil Burns.
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Offline Luke Pemberton

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #181 on: October 05, 2014, 05:14:07 PM »
I think NASA are doing the same thing again that they did it the 1960's and give out far too much detail because thats what they think the American public expect for the money spent (some estimates show $7 for every preson in America).
Wrong.  Again.  NASA puts out so much detail because it is the organization's mission to disseminate scientific information.

... and long may that be the case. For a US Government Organisation they sure do have long reaching tentacles to the rest of the world.  The NASA product has an incredible legacy, and I simply don't understand the hatred that is directed toward an organisation that is so devoted to science (my cuddly UK view of it anyway).
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Offline ka9q

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #182 on: October 06, 2014, 01:15:42 AM »
“The images show a landscape closely resembling portions of the southwestern United States”

Resembling, not "identical to".  I grew up in the southwestern United States.  It's not the same as Mars.
And I live in the southwestern United States. It certainly doesn't look like Mars. In the Mars pictures I see no houses or other buildings, no trees, bushes or other vegetation of any kind, no roads, animals or people, no tracks or trails other than those of the rover itself, no power or telephone lines or any other human artifacts but the rover and its associated parts, no rivers or bodies of water of any size, and no cumulus clouds in the sky -- which is butterscotch in color rather than blue. I haven't seen the sky take that color here since the last big wildfire, and there's no flaming vegetation in the Mars pictures since there's no vegetation whatsoever.

What the pictures from Mars do look like is Mars: a small, sterile (so far), rocky planet with a very thin atmosphere and no liquid water, with extremely fine iron oxide dust suspended in the atmosphere giving the sky a pink/butterscotch color, and two very small moons that occasionally transit the sun without producing eclipses. Oh, and two morning/evening stars instead of just one.


Offline BazBear

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #183 on: October 06, 2014, 04:59:32 AM »
More ghosts? Burns, are you simply a magnet for deceased astronauts?  ::)

« Last Edit: October 06, 2014, 05:13:24 AM by BazBear »
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Offline BazBear

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #184 on: October 06, 2014, 05:25:10 AM »
<snip>....Oh, and two morning/evening stars instead of just one.
Wow, that had never dawned on me before, thanks!  :)
"It's true you know. In space, no one can hear you scream like a little girl." - Mark Watney, protagonist of The Martian by Andy Weir

Offline ka9q

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #185 on: October 06, 2014, 05:27:00 AM »
<snip>....Oh, and two morning/evening stars instead of just one.
Wow, that had never dawned on me before, thanks!  :)
I think there has been at least one photo from Curiosity of the two of them. I know there have been some of the second "star" that we don't see here.
 

Offline BazBear

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #186 on: October 06, 2014, 06:18:02 AM »
<snip>....Oh, and two morning/evening stars instead of just one.
Wow, that had never dawned on me before, thanks!  :)
I think there has been at least one photo from Curiosity of the two of them. I know there have been some of the second "star" that we don't see here.
I'm sure there are! :) I guess sometimes I just suffer from a lack of imagination.
"It's true you know. In space, no one can hear you scream like a little girl." - Mark Watney, protagonist of The Martian by Andy Weir

Offline ipearse

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #187 on: December 23, 2014, 01:40:37 PM »
<snip>....Oh, and two morning/evening stars instead of just one.
Wow, that had never dawned on me before, thanks!  :)

I seem to recall the ending of one of Isaac Asimov's Black Widowers stories revolving around the idea of there being 2 morning/evening stars when seen from Mars...
"The Earth is the cradle of the mind, but we cannot live in the cradle forever" - Konstantin Tsiolkovski

Offline ka9q

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #188 on: December 23, 2014, 03:23:08 PM »
Well, strictly speaking earth has two morning stars, though one is only rarely visible. So Mars has three, and the one is probably even harder to see.

Offline raven

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #189 on: December 25, 2014, 11:49:08 PM »
Would it be possible to see Earth's moon as a separate object with the naked eye? If so, that brings the count up to four.

Offline smartcooky

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #190 on: December 26, 2014, 02:45:58 AM »
The moon is near enough 384,000 km away. Mars at its closes to us can be only about 56 million km; at its furthest about 400 million.

My rough back of the envelope calculation gives a maximum apparent separation between Earth and Moon as viewed from Mars of 0.39° when Mars its at its closest, and 0.06° when its furthest away.

The figure for when Mars is closest (0.39°) is about 80% of the Moon's diameter as viewed from the Earth, so theoretically, seeing the Earth and Moon as separate objects from Mars ought to be easy.

As to the Moon's apparent magnitude from Mars, I'm not so sure. 


ETA

Curiosity has seen them


« Last Edit: December 26, 2014, 02:49:49 AM by smartcooky »
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Offline raven

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #191 on: December 26, 2014, 12:50:57 PM »
I had seen of Curiosity's photo, which why I was curious about the naked eye possibilities. According to Wikipedia, the moon would, indeed, be potentially visible.

Offline smartcooky

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #192 on: December 26, 2014, 01:43:29 PM »
I have wondered how different our history might have been had Venus possessed a large satellite, the size of the Moon  clearly visible from the Earth. It would have been obvious, not only that its moon orbited the planet, but that the planet orbited the Sun (and not the Earth)  since it not only got brighter and dimmer, but the separation between Venus and its moon increased and decreased with its brightness. It was Ptolemy's dogma of the Sun centred universe (endorsed by the Church) that essentially held back astronomy for 1,500 years. A large, visible Moon around Venus might have meant that the Sun centred idea never eventuated in Ptolemy's time.
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Offline ka9q

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Re: Wonderful Photographs from Mars
« Reply #193 on: December 26, 2014, 05:51:20 PM »
I doubt that Luna and Earth would be easily distinguished by the naked eye from Mars except under very unusual conditions because:

The distance between Earth and Mars varies widely. Most of the time they're much farther apart than their minimum of 0.5 AU.

The apparent angular separation between Earth and Luna also varies widely over each month.

Earth is an inferior planet to Mars so near closest approach both Earth and Luna would appear in crescent phase, with Luna's surface properties dimming it considerably. Luna is only 1/4 the diameter of Earth and even at opposition has a considerably lower albedo, so it would tend to be lost in Earth's glare. (Most published spacecraft pictures of the two together have Luna artificially brightened just to make it visible.)

I'm sure they could often be readily distinguished by optics as Curiosity has done, but the naked eye just isn't that great a telescope.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2014, 05:53:16 PM by ka9q »