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   Undertoad  Sunday Jul 24 04:41 PM

July 25, 2011: Final shuttle return to Earth



http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencete...amme-ends.html

Quote:
It is an image like none ever seen before and it is only fitting it should be saved for the final, historic voyage.

Astronauts at the International Space Station captured a breathtaking image of Atlantis as it made its last ever voyage back to Earth.

The shuttle appears like a luminous body of light shooting across the atmosphere and is pictured just as it re-enters the earth's atmosphere - which appears like a yellow dome engulfing Earth.



sexobon  Sunday Jul 24 05:00 PM

Are you sure that's not just sunlight reflecting off a hair on the window?



ogwen69  Sunday Jul 24 06:51 PM

This wins IOTD.

I had a lifelong ambition to see the shuttle launch just once, now I never will. I got close ish, a mate lives close enough to post FB pics from her front porch, and while in Northern Cuba when this launch went off I at least could look in the right direction and hope the cloud cleared. It didn't.

But yeah, my favest pic evah!



classicman  Sunday Jul 24 07:30 PM

That pic is teh Awesome!



Wombat  Sunday Jul 24 11:19 PM

I didn't realise it went into such a steep dive!



ZenGum  Monday Jul 25 04:50 AM

Sniff sniff.

Does not compute.

I think that photo is of the shuttle (or some other rocket) launching, not landing.

Firstly, that looks like a trail of vapour and/or smoke. That would only happen on take off, wouldn't it? And the trail is at its most intense at the top, suggesting that is where the vehicle is when the photo is snapped - after climbing up.

Further, it is a perfect parabolic curve. It is too steep for a descent. It looks like a lift off, not a return, to me.

Not sure though, I've never been on the shuttle. Whadda you guys think?



SPUCK  Monday Jul 25 06:24 AM

That was my first thought too. But. The shuttle isn't running engines that you'd see as yellow that high out on the climb. Also it's not really that steep. It's a shot that's massively foreshortened because it's taken sort of from behind the descending shuttle.



ZenGum  Monday Jul 25 07:31 AM

Mmmmmyeahhhhh ... second thoughts ...


I think it was the phrase "dailymail" that made me wary!



Gravdigr  Monday Jul 25 08:25 AM

Well that's fairly fucking awesome.



CaliforniaMama  Monday Jul 25 09:46 AM

I always suspected we lived in a dome and this proves it.



CaliforniaMama  Monday Jul 25 09:48 AM

I was going to say "I wonder how they took that picture?" but I was a good girl and looked up the answer for myself.

They took it from the International Space Station.

If we aren't doing anymore space shuttles, I wonder what happens to the people at the International Space Station?



CaliforniaMama  Monday Jul 25 09:50 AM

I can't believe there is no more space program! How can they do this? Shouldn't space exploration be a priority?



glatt  Monday Jul 25 10:11 AM

As far as the space station goes, it's all up to the Russians now. We are going to ask them for rides up there and back.



BigV  Monday Jul 25 10:31 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliforniaMama View Post
I was going to say "I wonder how they took that picture?" but I was a good girl and looked up the answer for myself.

They took it from the International Space Station.

If we aren't doing anymore space shuttles, I wonder what happens to the people at the International Space Station?
Quote:
Originally Posted by glatt View Post
As far as the space station goes, it's all up to the Russians now. We are going to ask them for rides up there and back.
glatt's right at the rate of about $63 million dollars a ticket.


BigV  Monday Jul 25 10:59 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZenGum View Post
Sniff sniff.

Does not compute.

I think that photo is of the shuttle (or some other rocket) launching, not landing.

Firstly, that looks like a trail of vapour and/or smoke. That would only happen on take off, wouldn't it? And the trail is at its most intense at the top, suggesting that is where the vehicle is when the photo is snapped - after climbing up.

Further, it is a perfect parabolic curve. It is too steep for a descent. It looks like a lift off, not a return, to me.

Not sure though, I've never been on the shuttle. Whadda you guys think?
maybe I can help compute this...

I think it's the shuttle at the beginning of its re-entry into the atmosphere, not a rocket launching.

It makes a vapor trail where there's atmosphere and water to make the vapor, this happens in other places where there isn't a rocket launch. A jet airliner makes a vapor trail, a contrail, a condensation trail, right?

Next two points together please.

The earth is very nearly a perfect sphere. A single orbit is very nearly a perfect circle. Now, imagine this. Take a circle, a large disk would be helpful. If you look at the disk from a low oblique angle, the edge of the disk makes a curve that looks like a parabola, just like in the picture. When you see a bicycle wheel, in a picture or an illustration, it's almost never a circle, it's an ellipse, right? You're looking at a section of the circular path the shuttle's making from *above* and slightly to the left of the shuttle, over it's left shoulder kind of. The shuttle is moving away from the photographer in the ISS.

It is getting brighter at the "end" of the track because the atmosphere is denser as it continues to descend, more water, more vapor, more trail.

Does this help?


glatt  Monday Jul 25 11:12 AM

It's interesting to me that the stars are visible in the shot and so is the strong blue color of the oceans. Is it daylight? Is it dusk? You would think that for the stars to have the proper exposure, the Earth would be completely washed out. There is a bit of motion blurring in the clouds, so it's a fairly long exposure. Possibly a couple seconds long. I don't really understand this photograph.



Spexxvet  Monday Jul 25 11:52 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BigV View Post
glatt's right at the rate of about $63 million dollars a ticket.
Don't worry, we'll be able to by tickets from the Cinese at the dollar store in a couple of years.


Pete Zicato  Thursday Jul 28 06:12 PM

.



infinite monkey  Thursday Jul 28 06:26 PM



That's great!



Griff  Saturday Jul 30 10:57 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete Zicato View Post
.
Amen.


ZenGum  Saturday Jul 30 08:28 PM

According to this privateers are just about ready to begin visiting the space station:

Quote:
Musk was confident that, with NASA's approval, the Dragon spacecraft could fly directly to the space station on its next test flight, which he imagined could occur as early as mid-2011.



glatt  Saturday Jul 30 08:39 PM

I saw that space craft!



SPUCK  Sunday Jul 31 05:54 AM

Cool Glatt!

You should've interrogated them. They'd probably have liked some intelligent questions.



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