Friday, February 1, 2013

The Stars Our Destination?

Tucson Weather Today



On this day, February 1 of 2003, the space shuttle Columbia broke up while entering the atmosphere over Texas, killing all seven crew members on board.

The Columbia's 28th space mission, designated STS-107, was originally scheduled to launch on January 11, 2001, but was delayed numerous times for a variety of reasons over nearly two years. Columbia finally launched on January 16, 2003, with a crew of seven. Eighty seconds into the launch, a piece of foam insulation broke off from the shuttle's propellant tank and hit the edge of the shuttle's left wing.

 This is the official crew photo from mission
STS-107, of the Space Shuttle Columbia

 From left to right are mission specialist David Brown, commander Rick Husband, mission specialist Laurel Clark, mission specialist Kalpana Chawla, mission specialist Michael Anderson, pilot William McCool, and Israeli payload specialist Ilan Ramon.


Some Thoughts of a long-time Space Travel enthusiast: Me.

Believe it or not, I hear people say things like: "The United States' Apollo 11 was the first manned mission to land on the Moon on July 20, 1969. That's almost 44 years ago. Why have we not yet gotten to a planet in another star system?"

Well . . . think (deeply) about each of the following statements:

The speed of light is 299,792,458 miles per second.

1 light year equals 5,878,625,373,200 miles.

One of the fastest objects people have ever sent into space, the Voyager I space probe, is presently leaving the solar system at 17.1 kilometers per second.

At that speed it would take 17,532 years to travel one light year of distance.

The closest star to our sun is Proxima Centauri at 4.2 light years away.

To travel to Proxima Centauri, the Voyager I speed would take 73,634.4 years.

And it has been calculated that the farthest galaxy from Earth, dubbed Abell 1835 IR1916, is 13.23 billion light-years from Earth.

Think about it.

This indicates (to me, anyway) that unless some new process is discovered that can somehow bypass the laws of physics, human exploration beyond our solar system is about as close to impossible as one can get.



Interstellar [ihn-tuhr-STELL-uhr]
-  between or among stars
-  located, taking place, or traveling among the stars especially of the Milky Way galaxy

According to Wikipedia  -- The main challenge facing interstellar travel is the vast distances that have to be covered. This means that a very great speed and/or a very long travel time is needed. The time it takes with most realistic propulsion methods would be from decades to millennia. Hence an interstellar ship would be much more severely exposed to the hazards found in interplanetary travel, including vacuum, radiation, weightlessness, and micrometeoroids. The long travel times make it difficult to design manned missions. The fundamental limits of space-time present another challenge. Furthermore, it is difficult to foresee interstellar trips being justified for conventional economic reasons.


Sherman Hemsley
Born: Feb. 1, 1938
Died July 24, 2012

Sherman Alexander Hemsley was an American actor, best known for his role as George Jefferson on the CBS television series All In The Family and The Jeffersons, and as Deacon Ernest Frye on the NBC series Amen. He also played Earl Sinclair's horrifying boss, a Triceratops named B.P. Richfield, on the Jim Henson sitcom Dinosaurs.

  Born Feb. 1, 1968
Age: 44 years old

Lisa Marie Presley is an American singer and songwriter, and the only child of Elvis Presley and Priscilla Presley.

As sole heir to Elvis' estate, she is the owner of Graceland, the Memphis mansion where he lived, now a major tourist attraction.

Presley has conducted a long career in the music business and has issued many albums and videos. Her work as vocalist and lyricist has ranged across country, blues and folk.

Bill Mumy

Born Feb. 1, 1954
Age:  58 years old

Charles William "Bill" Mumy, Jr. is an American actor, musician, pitchman, instrumentalist, voice-over artist, and a figure in the science-fiction community. He is perhaps best known for his work as a child actor in film and television throughout the 1960s, then credited as Billy Mumy.

The red-headed Mumy came to prominence in the 1960s as a child actor, most notably as Will Robinson, the youngest of the three children of Professor John and Dr. Maureen Robinson (played by Guy Williams and June Lockhart, respectively) and friend of the nefarious and pompous Dr. Zachary Smith (played by Jonathan Harris), in the 1960s CBS sci-fi television series Lost in Space.

Born: Feb. 1, 1901
Died Nov 16, 1960

William Clark Gable was an American film actor. Though arguably best known for his role as Rhett Butler in the 1939 epic Gone with the Wind, Gable starred in a number of well-known films, among them It Happened One Night (1934), Manhattan Melodrama (1934), and Mutiny on the Bounty (1935).

His performance in Gone with the Wind earned him his third nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actor; he was also nominated for Mutiny on the Bounty and won for It Happened One Night.


I think space will be conquered through the mind rather than the clumsy medium of space travel.
--Patrick Troughton

Note: Patrick Troughton is the second incarnation of the Doctor in the long-running British science-fiction television series Doctor Who.

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