The descent of the Huygens probe to the frozen surface of Saturn's moon, Titan, in 2005, marks a pinnacle achievement in space exploration - the most distant planetary landing ever made or presently foreseen. The Huygens probe's seven-year voyage through space (past Venus, Earth and Jupiter) attached to the Cassini orbiter, its arrival at Saturn and three-week dormant coast to Saturn's moon, Titan, culminated in Huygens' hypersonic entry into Titan's atmosphere, 2.5-hour parachute descent, and continued operation for 72 minutes on the surface transmitting date back to Earth via the Cassini orbiter. Saturn has 62 confirmed orbiting moons, but Titan (which is larger than the planet Mercury) was chosen as a has two major components of Earth's atmosphere - nitrogen and oxygen - but the oxygen is was thought to be frozen as water ice within the body of the moon. If Titan received more sunlight, its atmosphere might well resemble that of a primitive Earth. The hope is that study of the data gathered about Titan will help us to understand how the Earth evolved, and possibly what led to the evolution of life.
Cassini-Huygens was the most ambitious and successful space journey ever launched to the outer Solar System. This book examines all aspects of the journey: its conception and planning; the lengthy political processes needed to make it a reality; the engineering and development required to build the spacecraft; its 2.2-billion mile journey from Earth to the Ringed Planet and the amazing discoveries from the mission. The author traces how the visions of a few brilliant scientists matured, gained popularity and eventually became a reality. Innovative technical leaps were necessary to assemble such a multifaceted spacecraft and reliably operate it while it orbited a planet so far from our own. The Cassini-Huygens spacecraft design evolved from other deep space efforts, most notably the Galileo mission to Jupiter, enabling the voluminous, paradigm-shifting scientific data collected by the spacecraft. Some of these discoveries are absolute gems. A small satellite that scientists once thought of as a dead piece of rock turned out to contain a warm underground sea that could conceivably harbor life. And we now know that hiding under the mist of Saturn’s largest moon, Titan, is a world with lakes, fluvial channels, and dunes hauntingly reminiscent of those on our own planet, except that on Titan, it’s not water that fills those lakes but hydrocarbons. These and other breakthroughs illustrate why the Cassini-Huygens mission will be remembered as one of greatest voyages of discovery ever made.
The authors use information gathered over nearly four centuries to describe Saturn's moon Titan, the second largest moon in the solar system, and what we know about it based on observations from astronomers, results from the Voyager missions, and other sources.
For twenty-five years following the Voyager mission, scientists speculated about Saturn's largest moon, a mysterious orb clouded in orange haze. Finally, in 2005, the Cassini-Huygens probe successfully parachuted down through Titan's atmosphere, all the while transmitting images and data. In the early 1980s, when the two Voyager spacecraft skimmed past Titan, Saturn's largest moon, they transmitted back enticing images of a mysterious world concealed in a seemingly impenetrable orange haze. Titan Unveiled is one of the first general interest books to reveal the startling new discoveries that have been made since the arrival of the Cassini-Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan. Ralph Lorenz and Jacqueline Mitton take readers behind the scenes of this mission. Launched in 1997, Cassini entered orbit around Saturn in summer 2004. Its formidable payload included the Huygens probe, which successfully parachuted down through Titan's atmosphere in early 2005, all the while transmitting images and data--and scientists were startled by what they saw. One of those researchers was Lorenz, who gives an insider's account of the scientific community's first close encounter with an alien landscape of liquid methane seas and turbulent orange skies. Amid the challenges and frayed nerves, new discoveries are made, including methane monsoons, equatorial sand seas, and Titan's polar hood. Lorenz and Mitton describe Titan as a world strikingly like Earth and tell how Titan may hold clues to the origins of life on our own planet and possibly to its presence on others. Generously illustrated with many stunning images, Titan Unveiled is essential reading for anyone interested in space exploration, planetary science, or astronomy. A new afterword brings readers up to date on Cassini's ongoing exploration of Titan, describing the many new discoveries made since 2006.
*Brings the story of the Cassini-Huygens mission and their joint exploration of the Saturnian system right up to date. *Combines a review of previous knowledge of Saturn, its rings and moons, including Titan, with new spacecraft results in one handy volume. *Provides the latest and most spectacular images, which will never have appeared before in book form. *Gives a context to enable the reader to more easily appreciate the stream of discoveries that will be made by the Cassini-Huygens mission. *Tells the exciting story of the Huygens spacecraft’s journey to the surface of Titan.
This book describes the most complex machine ever sent to another planet: Curiosity. It is a one-ton robot with two brains, seventeen cameras, six wheels, nuclear power, and a laser beam on its head. No one human understands how all of its systems and instruments work. This essential reference to the Curiosity mission explains the engineering behind every system on the rover, from its rocket-powered jetpack to its radioisotope thermoelectric generator to its fiendishly complex sample handling system. Its lavishly illustrated text explains how all the instruments work -- its cameras, spectrometers, sample-cooking oven, and weather station -- and describes the instruments' abilities and limitations. It tells you how the systems have functioned on Mars, and how scientists and engineers have worked around problems developed on a faraway planet: holey wheels and broken focus lasers. And it explains the grueling mission operations schedule that keeps the rover working day in and day out.
Join Bonnie J. Buratti, a leading planetary astronomer, on this personal tour of NASA's latest discoveries. Moving through the Solar System from Mercury, Venus, Mars, past comets and asteroids and the moons of the giant planets, to Pluto, and on to exoplanets, she gives vivid descriptions of landforms that are similar to those found on Earth but that are more fantastic. Sulfur-rich volcanoes and lakes on Io, active gullies on Mars, huge ice plumes and tar-like deposits on the moons of Saturn, hydrocarbon rivers and lakes on Titan, and nitrogen glaciers on Pluto are just some of the marvels that await readers. Discover what it is like to be involved in a major scientific enterprise, with all its pitfalls and excitement, from the perspective of a female scientist. This engaging account of modern space exploration is written for non-specialist readers, from students in high school to enthusiasts of all ages.
The Yearbook on Space Policy is the reference publication analysing space policy developments. Each year it presents issues and trends in space policy and the space sector as a whole. Its scope is global and its perspective is European. The Yearbook also links space policy with other policy areas. It highlights specific events and issues, and provides useful insights, data and information on space activities. The Yearbook on Space Policy is edited by the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) based in Vienna, Austria. It combines in-house research and contributions of members of the European Space Policy Research and Academic Network (ESPRAN), coordinated by ESPI. The Yearbook is designed for government decision-makers and agencies, industry professionals, as well as the service sectors, researchers and scientists and the interested public.
The Yearbook on Space Policy is the reference publication analyzing space policy developments. Each year it presents issues and trends in space policy and the space sector as a whole. Its scope is global and its perspective is European. The Yearbook also links space policy with other policy areas. It highlights specific events and issues, and provides useful insights, data and information on space activities. The Yearbook on Space Policy is edited by the European Space Policy Institute (ESPI) based in Vienna, Austria. It combines in-house research and contributions of members of the European Space Policy Research and Academic Network (ESPRAN), coordinated by ESPI. The Yearbook is designed for government decision-makers and agencies, industry professionals, as well as the service sectors, researchers and scientists and the interested public.
Voyager 1 has recently crossed the boundary of our solar system and passed into interstellar space, and Voyager 2 is likely to follow suit, on a different path, between 2016 and 2017. The two Voyager probes will continue to transmit details of discoveries beyond our solar system until at least 2020.
Space debris and asteroid impacts pose a very real, very near-term threat to Earth. In order to help study and mitigate these risks, the Stardust program was formed in 2013. This training and research network was devoted to developing and mastering techniques such as removal, deflection, exploitation, and tracking. This book is a collection of many of the topics addressed at the Final Stardust Conference, describing the latest in asteroid monitoring and how engineering efforts can help us reduce space debris. It is a selection of studies bringing together specialists from universities, research institutions, and industry, tasked with the mission of pushing the boundaries of space research with innovative ideas and visionary concepts. Topics covered by the Symposium: Orbital and Attitude Dynamics Modeling Long Term Orbit and Attitude Evolution Particle Cloud Modeling and Simulation Collision and Impact Modelling and Simulation, Re-entry Modeling and Simulation Asteroid Origins and Characterization Orbit and Attitude Determination Impact Prediction and Risk Analysis, Mission Analysis-Proximity Operations, Active Removal/Deflection Control Under Uncertainty, Active Removal/Deflection Technologies, and Asteroid Manipulation
Is there life on Mars? This age-old question has prompted many missions to Mars, with the most recent rover, Curiosity, having safely landed in August 2012 amid a blaze of publicity. This manual covers the development, design and engineering of three generations of Mars rover: Sojourner, which landed in 1997, was the size of a microwave; Spirit and Opportunity, both the size of a shopping cart, followed in 2004; and Curiosity is the size of a car, with a design life of two years. Learn how these machines work as well as what they have found and hope to discover - and look forward to the possibility that humans may yet set foot on the Red Planet.
With all-new 3-D digital models, The Planets reveals the solar system from Earth to Mars and beyond in astonishing detail. DK has commissioned a unique model of each planet that can be viewed from any angle and layer by layer. Closer views are provided by 3-D terrain models that take the reader on a trip to the surfaces of the rocky planets. Timelines track our relationship with each planet, while infographics present facts in a fresh, colorful way. Awe-inspiring and informative, The Planets is the definitive guide to the solar system.
Ultimate guide to the discoveries that changed the world From the discovery of the wheel to the worldwide web our thirst for innovation is what makes us human. Science Year by Year takes a fascinating look at our heritage of invention and explores how science has shaped the past and how it may shape the future. Science Year by Year has a new discovery for everyone in the family, with global coverage of all major scientific advances. Groundbreaking thinkers such as Marie Curie, Albert Einstein and Charles Darwin are covered, with their discoveries clearly explained and situated in scientific history with illustrated timelines. Revolutionary innovations such as measuring time, gears and plastics are detailed alongside scientific artefacts such as navigation tools and flying machines. Science Year by Year is perfect for anyone interested in invention and innovation with exciting discoveries to be made by all.
Twenty-two humorous essays on topics ranging from Joseph Stalin's theories of revolutionary stand-up comedy, to a commencement address given by a Satanist college President, to the opening statement of an attorney representing Wile E. Coyote in a product liability suit against the Acme company, supplier of unpredictable rocket sleds and faulty spring-powered shoes.
A history of the impact of timekeeping technologies on Europe explains how clocks and watches directly contributed to industrialization and the rise of a time-aware culture over the course of four hundred years. Reprint.
The Night Sky Companion is a comprehensive guide to what can be explored in the heavens on a nightly basis. Designed to appeal to readers at all skill levels and involvement, it provides a digest for sky watchers interested in all-in-one-place information that includes history, current events, and of course interesting objects to be observed on any given day. It provides unaided eye observers an opportunity to view many objects or events as well as learn about their history, science and how just "looking up" can be rewarding. It is richly illustrated with finder maps and photographs.
The book will inform the space enthusiast and general reader about what an astronaut does, the experience of space flight, the equipment he uses, and what it takes to become an astronaut. It will also appeal to aspiring 'spaceflight participants' in the forthcoming new industry of space tourism being developed by Virgin Galactic, XCOR, Bigelow, Space-X, Boeing and other companies. Although concentrating on contemporary astronaut selection and flight, especially with NASA, ESA and Russia, it will also cover astronaut experiences of pioneering missions of the past and some proposed for the near future, such as lunar flight and landing, asteroid rendezvous and travel to Mars.
More frisbees are sold each year than baseballs, basketballs and footballs combined. Yet these familiar flying objects have subtle and clever aerodynamic and gyrodynamic properties which are only recently being documented by wind tunnel and other studies. In common with other rotating bodies discussed in this readily accessible book, they are typically not treated in textbooks of aeronautics and the literature is scattered in a variety of places. This book develops the theme of disc-wings and spinning aerospace vehicles in parallel. Since many of the examples are recreational, anyone who enjoys these activities will likely find it profitable and enjoyable. In addition to spinning objects of various shapes, several exotic manned aircraft with disc planforms have been proposed and a prototypes built – these include a Nazi ‘secret weapon’ and the De Havilland Avrocar, also discussed in the book. Boomerangs represent another category of spinning aerodynamic body whose behavior can only be understood by coupling aerodynamics with gyrodynamics. The narrative, supported by equations and graphs, explains how the shape and throw of a boomerang relates to its trajectory. The natural world presents still other examples, namely the samaras or ‘seed-wings’ of many tree species, which autorotate during their descent, like a helicopter whose engine has failed. The flight performance of these spinning wings directly affects the dispersal and thus the evolutionary competitiveness of the trees concerned. Samara-type configurations are also considered for instrumentation and other payload dispersal applications. In short, the book discusses a range of familiar, connected, but largely undeveloped, topics in an accessible, but complete, manner. From the reviews of the first edition: "In his fascinating book Spinning Flight, Ralph Lorenz provides a rich feast of ... examples of spinning bodies ... . The book is well organized ... . The discussion in the book ... should be accessible to readers with some elementary understanding of aerodynamic principles. For the expert, the book is full of open problems ... . Its scope is extensive ... . In this respect, there may be something for everyone within its attractively designed cover ... ." (H. K. Moffatt, Nature, Vol. 444, December, 2006) "If you liked physics at school, then this book is for you. It concerns itself with flying objects that spin through the air, and even tells you how to impress your friends with the biomechanics of Frisbees. ... there is plenty of information at all levels, and the book has a wealth of detail that only an aerospace engineer like Lorenz could have come up with." (Len Fisher, BBC Focus, February, 2007)