Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A New Earth Size World Discovered!

Got this bit of news via the Drudge Report...

US astronomers reported on Wednesday that they have discovered a Earth-size planet that might be habitable, and it is orbiting a nearby star. They also added that they think there could be many more such planets in outer space.

The new planet, discovered by a team of astronomers from the University of California at Santa Cruz, and from the Carnegie Institution of Washington; the new world is orbiting the red dwarf star Gliese 581. Its right smack in the middle of that star's "habitable zone" they said.

The scientists have dubbed this new world Gliese 581g and it has a mass three to four times that of our own Earth, and a orbital period of just under 37 days (i.e. a year on this planet just takes 37 days to complete). It is no doubt a rocky world and it has enough gravity to hold onto an atmosphere. So Says Professor Steven Vogt of U of C, Santa Cruz. The world has a diameter of 1.2 to 1.4 times that of Earth. The gravity would be about the same or slightly higher than Earth "Normal."

Gliese 581 is about 20 light years away from our own solar system. Gliese581g is tidally locked to its star, meaning that one side is aways facing teh star and the other is facing away in perpetual darkness. The scientists gues that teh average surface temperture would be about -24 to +10 degrees Fahrenheit (-31 to -12 degrees Celsius).

More details will be published in the Astrophysical Journal and online at soon.

Quote: "Any emerging life forms on the new planet would have a wide range of stable climates to choose from and to evolve around, depending on their longitude," Vogt said.

In their report, the scientists in fact announce the discovery of two new planets around Gliese 581, bringing the total number of known planets around this star to six.

That is the most yet discovered in a planetary system other than Earth's solar system. End Quote.

UPDATE (September 30, 2010): Found image on link posted below in Ref. section.

UPDATE 1 (September 30, 2010): From article posted to this date.

"This really is the first Goldilocks planet," said co-discoverer R. Paul Butler of the Carnegie Institution of Washington.

Seems like R. Paul Butler has managed to already name the new world after his wife! Unofficially, its being called: Zarmina's World;


1. Yahoo News/AFP. September 29, 2010.(

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Russian Flying Cars Project

Article in its entirity quoted from the Gizowatch website...

The concept of flying cars is still in the materializing stage, and that flying saucer ambition from Moller International never went through. But that’s not a reason enough to stop Russian DIYer with his efforts for something new in the genre. Case in point is a flying saucer being developed by former pilot, Eugene Bugrov from Tyumen, Russia. An aircraft for the 21st century, which isn’t a fantasy, has earned Eugene several awards at international forums.

Eugene’s fundamentally new type of engine that operates on plasma has been notices and shown interest in by foreign companies. The flying saucer that has been patented could soon be seen surfing in the air because some like-minded creators have joined Eugene in the development of his flying project of course to speed up things.

Eugene’s arsenal of creations also includes a spider-man suitcase, which lets people escape high-rise buildings down the walls in case of emergency, and a laser that can cut through rocks and metal. Eugene claims a place in the “Book of Records of the Tyumen Region” as the most productive inventor of the area.

Maybe he can succeed where Moller has failed on the flying car dream.

1. (

Saturday, September 11, 2010

National Space Society-Adopt the Senate Version of the NASA Authorization Act 2010

This following article comes from the National Space Society's own blog...

The National Space Society Calls for House to Adopt the Senate Version of the NASA Authorization Act of 2010

The National Space Society (NSS) is today reaffirming its longstanding and unwavering commitment to further space exploration and development, by calling on the Executive and Legislative branches to incorporate their various proposals into a Unified Space Policy so that the United States can once again begin to move beyond low Earth orbit. Congress and the Administration need to work together to determine the best path forward relative to our space program, including how best to leverage the necessary partnership between the public and private sectors relative to launch capabilities and how best to maintain a skilled work force.

The NSS emphatically requests that the House of Representatives adopt the Senate version of the NASA Authorization Act of 2010.

NSS believes that the Senates bipartisan NASA Authorization Act of 2010 represents the most promising of the options that have been proposed to date. The Senate bill provides a framework for compromise, which will be required in order to obtain the widespread political support necessary to pass and fund a set of programs that together will enable the United States to once again move beyond low Earth orbit. Significantly, the Senate bill seeks to make use of the work force and infrastructure made available by the imminent retirement of the Space Shuttle by speeding the development of a new Heavy Lift Vehicle (HLV), which the bill specifies should be in service by 2016. The Senate bill tasks NASA with developing and building an evolvable system which can incorporate emerging technological advances, and also demands that NASA and Congress work together to accomplish this task within a specific, affordable, and sustainable budget.

In addition, the bill also preserves the primary initiatives included in the Administration’s budget proposal, such as support for using commercial providers to transport cargo and crew to and from the International Space Station, funding for technology development programs, and a firm commitment to science. Indeed, the Senate bill specifically authorizes development of in-space capabilities such as refueling and storage technology, orbital transfer systems, innovative in-space propulsion technology, communications, and data management. Although the amounts allocated in the Senate bill for commercial crew and technology development are less than the amounts proposed by the Administration, they still represent a significant increase in funding for and commitment to both commercial space and technology development.

As Congress and the Administration continue to work together, we urge that the following concepts be included in the new plan:

Heavy Lift Vehicle: As set forth in the Senate bill, the selection and development of a new Heavy Lift Vehicle (HLV) must begin in the very near term. NSS maintains that development should commence no later than the 2011 date set forth in the Senate bill. The missions that the new HLV will be slated to accomplish must be identified and sufficient funding must be provided to achieve those missions. The design of the vehicle should be mission-enabling, while at the same time being focused on efficiency, affordability, and sustainability.

Commercial: The new commercial launch industry must be supported. Successful development of such an industry can not only dramatically reduce the cost of launch but can also enable NASA to focus its resources beyond low Earth orbit. In addition to creating a new major industry for the 21st century, embracing commercial options can help to create a new fiscal culture at NASA.

Technology Review: NSS supports the focus on research and development of new enabling technologies, such as advanced propulsion. However, to keep such technology development programs focused, NSS calls on NASA to define and prioritize the most promising technology concepts to advance human space exploration.

Timelines and Destinations: NSS believes that the Congress and the Administration need to establish firm timelines and destinations. NSS believes that we should set a goal to send humans to at least one intermediate destination beyond low Earth orbit, such as an asteroid, within the next ten years and to land humans on Mars by no later than 2030. By doing this, we will gain valuable knowledge and keep the country, and our skilled workforce, fully engaged in the program. If it is to succeed, this new path will require a sustained, generational commitment to NASA’s long-term mission. It will also require incentives for private sector and international participation. NSS acknowledges the financial constraints under which the U.S. government will be operating in the next few years. Tax dollars should be spent wisely, which is why we are making these requests. The National Space Society looks forward to working with Congress, NASA, and the Administration to guarantee that the United States remains a leader in space exploration.

With the world all caught up if we should burn a book or not, for me; its nice to stick with something I have a better grasp on.