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  1. #3976
    Making people dance. :-)
    Edmond's Avatar
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    Remember what the yankee dummies did with the Mars Climate Orbiter.


    Taking her down to the Martian atmosphere and a 330 million $ mission lost coz they decided not to use the metric system instructions like everyone else. 2 engineers actually realized but were knocked back because their protests weren't submitted on proper forms.

  2. #3977
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    A German, Hans Königsmann worked for SpaceX for a long time in a management position. He was one of the very early people at SpaceX as a startup. Germany has very little to show in space activities. There are a few startups, but they have not shown a lot yet.

    We have an engine test center in Lampoldshausen. The facilities are quite impressive. I was lucky enough to have a tour there.

    But over all there is pretty little to be proud of.
    "don't attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by incompetence"

  3. #3978
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    NASA will have a live stream of the Moon landing attempt. I feel quite optimistic for some reason.

    Intuitive Machines-1 Lunar Landing | NASA+

  4. #3979
    Making people dance. :-)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Takeovers View Post
    NASA will have a live stream of the Moon landing attempt. I feel quite optimistic for some reason.

    Intuitive Machines-1 Lunar Landing | NASA+
    I clicked that, and changed the time to Bangkok, which shows it as happening at 4am.


    Just in case any Thai posters are really, really eager to watch it live.

  5. #3980
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    The life stream starts very early. You could join at least 90 minutes later and still get the landing. That would be 5:30 your time. A little less inconvenient.

  6. #3981
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    So they confirmed landing. They get a signal but it is very weak. They are working on it, will take a while. They call it a success. NASA administrator Nelson held a short congratulatory speech.

    That may be a bit premature. One may think the lander touched down but is not in the expected orientation. We will have to wait and see. It is very late local time in Germany. I am going to bed now and will watch again in the morning.

  7. #3982
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    The nips will be seething, it sounds like it's the right way up.

    The Odysseus lander has successfully touched down after a "nail-biting" descent saw the first ever privately owned craft reach the moon's surface.

    The Intuitive Machines' lander is also the first US lander to successfully reach the moon in more than 50 years - since the last of NASA's Apollo programme in 1972.

    There was applause and cheers in the Houston control room as landing success was confirmed after a few tense minutes.

    "I know this was a nail-biter, but we are on the surface, and we are transmitting," Intuitive Machines CEO Steve Altemus said.


    "Welcome to the moon."

    The 14 foot tall, six-footed carbon fibre and titanium lander descended from a moon-skimming orbit and guided itself to the surface, searching for a relatively flat spot among the cliffs and craters to make its landing near the south pole.

    <snip>


    NASA is the mission's main sponsor, paying $118m (£93.5m) to put its experiments on board as part of a programme which could eventually see astronauts return to the moon later in the decade.

    The space agency has ambitions to make lunar trips a more regular affair and, eventually, build a base on the moon.


    Odysseus is also carrying six other payloads from commercial companies.


    It has landed closer to the moon's south pole than any other craft.


    The region has many more craters, cliffs and boulders than the equator, where the Apollo landings were in the 60s and 70s.


    Scientists hope to find layers of ice, or perhaps Arctic-style permafrost, from which they can create hydration for astronauts - something which would enable them to stay for prolonged missions.

    Moon landing: US lander successfully touches down in 'giant leap forward for all of humanity' | Science & Tech News | Sky News




  8. #3983
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    Intuitive machines on Twitter

    Intuitive Machines
    @Int_Machines
    After troubleshooting communications, flight controllers have confirmed Odysseus is upright and starting to send data.
    Right now, we are working to downlink the first images from the lunar surface.
    We are still waiting on download of pictures and data.

    https://twitter.com/Int_Machines

    https://twitter.com/Int_Machines?ref...Ctwgr%5Eauthor

  9. #3984
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    OK now the nips will be cheerful again.

    The Odysseus Moon lander is likely lying on its side with its head resting against a rock.

    The US spacecraft, which made history on Thursday by becoming the first ever privately built and operated robot to complete a soft lunar touchdown, is otherwise in good condition.

    Its owner, Texan firm Intuitive Machines, says Odysseus has plenty of power and is communicating with Earth.

    Controllers are trying to retrieve pictures from the robot.

    Steve Altemus, the CEO and co-founder of IM, said it wasn't totally clear what had happened but the data suggested the robot caught a foot on the surface and then fell because it still had some lateral motion at the moment of landing.

    Another possibility is that Odysseus broke a leg as it came down. Certainly, inertial measurement sensors indicate the body of the vehicle to be in a horizontal pose.

    Intuitive Machines: Odysseus Moon lander '''tipped over on touchdown''' - BBC News



  10. #3985
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    Quote Originally Posted by harrybarracuda View Post
    Its owner, Texan firm Intuitive Machines, says Odysseus has plenty of power and is communicating with Earth.
    That's a VERY optimistic assesment regarding communication. Radio amateurs and others had already found out that they have communication only with a very low bandwith telemetry channel. The main channel with much higher data throughput is not operating.

    There are surprisingly many parallels between the japanese attempt ant the IM attempt. One could say they are both barely partial successes, mostly failures. I personally would still say the japanese landing was mostly a failure, the IM landing tends much more to be a partial success.

    My reason for that is the japanese attempts is a one off and we don't know if and possibly when they will try again, applying lessons learned.

    In contrast the IM landing is the first of at least 3, likely more landings. Plenty of opportunities to apply lessons learned. BTW the IM stock rose a lot after launch of the mission. It dropped after landing but as of now is still +140%. So investors are not panicking, they have confidence.

    A Spacenews article

    IM-1 lunar lander tipped over on its side - SpaceNews

    WASHINGTON — The Intuitive Machines Nova-C lunar lander likely tipped over when touching down on the moon Feb. 22 and is now resting on its side.


    In a televised media teleconference Feb. 23, nearly 24 hours after the IM-1 mission landed on the moon, company officials said they believed the lander, 4.3 meters tall and 1.6 meters in diameter, is resting on its side a few kilometers from its intended landing site near the Malapert A crater in the south polar regions of the moon.


    The lander “caught a foot in the surface, and the lander has tipped,” said Steve Altemus, chief executive of Intuitive Machines, illustrating the status of the lander with a small model of it.


    He suggested that was caused by the lander coming down faster than expected. The lander’s final descent was supposed to be straight down at about one meter per second, but was instead descending at about three times that velocity with about one meter per second of lateral motion.


    “If you catch a foot, we might have fractured that landing gear and tipped over gently,” he said. The lander appears to be resting on a rock, elevating it slightly above the surface, based on the power it is generating; he said the foot could also be in a crevice.


    Intuitive Machines had reported a couple hours after the landing that the lander was upright. However, Altemus said that determination was based on “stale telemetry” from fuel tanks on the lander.

    The lander has yet to return images as controllers work to reconfigure radios on the spacecraft. Tim Crain, chief technology officer of Intuitive Machines, said they are still determining what data rates they can get with the lander on its side and some antennas thus not usable. “We expect to get most of the mission data down once we stabilize our configuration,” he said.


    Fortunately, the only payload mounted on the side of the lander now facing the surface is a static payload: an artwork provided by artist Jeff Koons. Other commercial and NASA payloads are operating, and many of them collected data during the flight to the moon and during the descent to the surface.


    One of those NASA payloads may have saved the mission. Engineers were able to use data from the Navigation Doppler Lidar instrument developed at NASA’s Langley Research Center to replace laser rangefinders on the lander that were not working.


    Controllers discovered the problem with the lander’s laser rangefinders after going into orbit around the moon Feb. 21 and deciding to use them to more precisely measure the lander’s orbit, which was more elliptical than intended. The lasers, though, did not work, and engineers determined that a physical switch — a safety measure on the ground because the lasers are not eye-safe — was not flipped before launch.


    “It was like a punch in the stomach. We were going to lose the mission,” Altemus recalled. Crain then found it would be possible to take the data from two lasers in the NASA instrument and incorporate them into the lander’s navigation system.


    “In normal software development for a spacecraft, this is the kind of thing that would have taken a month,” Crain said. “Our team basically did that in an hour and a half.”


    That process also provided a greater validation of the NASA payload than originally expected. “The technology performed flawlessly,” said Prasun Desai, NASA deputy associate administrator for space technology. “It acquired range and velocity data well above the required five-kilometer altitude as it was descending.”


    He noted the goal of flying the payload was to achieve a technology readiness level (TRL) of 6 on a 1-to-9 scale, validating a prototype of the technology in a relevant environment. With its use on the landing, “we were able to get an operational system now, TRL 9. It’s ready to be used from now on.”


    Altemus added it was “fortuitous” that Nova-C was in an elliptical orbit that prompted engineers to activate the laser rangefinder earlier than expected and thus discovered the problem. “That was fortunate and a bit of luck for us.”


    In normal operations, Crain said, the laser rangefinders would not have been activated until after the lander began its powered descent to the surface. “We would have probably been five minutes to landing before we realized those lasers weren’t working,” he said.


    One payload yet to operate is EagleCam, a student-built camera that was designed to eject from the lander about 30 meters from the surface and take images of the landing. However, the ejection did not take place after the software on the lander was revised to make use of the Navigation Doppler Lidar data. Altemus said EagleCam is mounted on a side panel and should be able to eject later in the mission, which may last 9 to 10 days on the surface, providing images of the lander.


    Crain said the lander is likely within two to three kilometers of the planned landing site, based on the performance of optical navigation sensors on the lander. NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter is scheduled to pass over the landing area in the next few days and will take images in an effort to pinpoint the landing location.


    Despite the lander being on its side, both the company and NASA played up the milestones of the mission. That included being the first commercial spacecraft to land softly on the moon, the first American spacecraft to do so since Apollo 17 in December 1972 and the mission to land the closest yet to the lunar south pole, at a latitude of about 80 degrees south.


    The landing was a validation of NASA’s approach, through its Commercial Lunar Payload Services program, of having companies design, build and operate lunar lander missions, argued Joel Kearns, deputy associate administrator for exploration in NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. “This is a gigantic accomplishment.”
    If you want to do a deep dive, read the NSF (NASA Spaceflight Forum) thread. Many very knowledgeable people (also some less so) discuss there.

    IM-1 Odysseus lunar lander

    Many pages, I suggest the last 5 or so pages, where the landing is discussed. Or the whole thing if you are very interested.

  11. #3986
    Thailand Expat DrWilly's Avatar
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    Thank ypu for the updates, Takeovers.

  12. #3987
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    SLIM is still breathing.

    Japan's Moon lander has survived the harsh lunar night, the sunless and freezing equivalent to two Earth weeks.

    "Last night, a command was sent to #SLIM and a response received," national space agency Jaxa said on X.

    The craft was put into sleep mode after an awkward landing in January left its solar panels facing the wrong way and unable to generate power.

    A change in sunlight direction later allowed it to send pictures back but it shut down again as lunar night fell.

    Jaxa said at the time that Slim (Smart Lander for Investigating Moon) was not designed for the harsh lunar nights.

    It said it planned to try to operate again from mid-February, when the Sun would shine again on Slim's solar cells.

    "The news that SLIM has rebooted itself after the cold lunar night is significant," said Dr Simeon Barber from the UK's Open University. "Surviving lunar night is one of the key technological challenges to be overcome if we are to establish long-lived robotic or human missions on the Moon."

    Japan Moon lander survives lunar night - BBC News





  13. #3988
    Thailand Expat DrWilly's Avatar
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    The article continues


    Dr Barber explained that Slim landed near the Moon's equator, where the lunar surface reaches more than 100C at noon, but then plunges to -130C during the lunar night.



    Jaxa said that communication with the lander was terminated after a short time - it was lunar midday, meaning the temperature of the communications equipment was very high.


    But it posted the following picture on X, which it said was taken from the lander while it was back in action

    Space News thread-img_5419-jpeg
    Jaxa said preparations were being made to resume operations when instrument temperatures had cooled sufficiently.


    During its previous brief period of re-awakening, Slim was able to study its surroundings in detail and transmit new images to Earth.



    Jaxa will be hoping that having survived the lunar night it will be able to continue its work.






    9 Amazing Space Missions


    From a commercial moon mission by Intuitive Machines to Nasa's mini helicopter on Mars: 9 amazing space missions.


    Available now on BBC iPlayer






    Dr Barber said that future landers will need so-called 'active' thermal control - that is the ability to dissipate heat generated on board during the daytime, and then to change into a heat-conserving mode at night to prevent things getting too cold.


    "The fact that Slim survived without such a complex design might give us clues as to how electronics really behaves on the Moon," he said. "Plus, we can look forward to more science from Slim!"



    The landing in January made Jaxa only the fifth national space agency to achieve a soft touchdown on the Moon - after the US, the former Soviet Union, China and India.


    Also in a post on X, Jaxa congratulated the team behind a US spacecraft, the Odysseus Moon lander, for making history on Thursday by becoming the first ever privately built and operated robot to complete a soft lunar touchdown.


    Like Slim, it also landed awkwardly. Controllers at the operating company, Intuitive Machines, think their robot tipped on to its side at the moment of touchdown. Odysseus does, however, appear still to be functional and is communicating with Earth.


    No pictures from the Odysseus mission at the surface have yet been released.







    Space News thread-img_5419-jpeg





  14. #3989
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  15. #3990
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Salsa dancer View Post
    Still? Fancy that.

  16. #3991
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    But why?
    Because it came down with 3 times the design speed. But mostly because it had quite significant horizontal speed. It was supposed to have no horizontal speed. Of course it tipped over.

  17. #3992
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    ^what were the horizontal and vertical velocity components Takes?

    We need to get TeakDOOR engineering onto this right away

  18. #3993
    Thailand Expat DrWilly's Avatar
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    ^ read the article.


    Odysseus came in for a landing faster than projected, with a downward velocity of 6 mph and sideward velocity of 2 mph.



  19. #3994
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    Moon lander Odysseus mission to be cut short after sideways touchdown

    By Steve Gorman and Joey Roulette

    February 27, 202410:11 AM GMT+7Updated 11 hours ago

    "Feb 26 (Reuters) - Flight control engineers expect to lose contact with the private U.S. moon lander Odysseus on Tuesday morning, cutting short the mission five days after its sideways touchdown, the company behind the spacecraft, Intuitive Machines said on Monday.


    It remained to be seen how much scientific data might be lost as a result of the shortened lifespan of Odysseus, which according to previous estimates from the company and its biggest customer, NASA, was supposed to operate on the moon for seven to 10 days.

    The company's forecast for a premature end to the mission came as new details emerged about testing shortcuts and human error that led to an in-flight failure of the spacecraft's laser-guided range finders ahead of its landing last Thursday near the moon's south pole.

    An Intuitive Machines official said the loss of the range finders stemmed from the company's decision to forgo a test firing of the laser system to save time and money during pre-flight checks of Odysseus at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

    "There were certainly things we could've done to test it and actually fire it. They would've been very time-consuming and very costly," Mike Hansen, the company's head of navigation systems, told Reuters in an interview on Saturday. "So that was a risk as a company that we acknowledged and took that risk."

    On Friday Intuitive Machines had disclosed that the laser range finders - designed to feed altitude and forward-velocity readings to Odysseus' autonomous navigation system - were inoperable because company engineers neglected to unlock the lasers' safety switch before launch on Feb. 15. The safety lock, akin to a firearm's safety switch, can only be disabled by hand.

    The range-finder glitch, detected just hours before the final descent, forced flight controllers to send Odysseus into an extra lunar orbit while they improvised a work-around to avoid what could have been a catastrophic crash-landing.

    SOLAR POWER LIMITED


    Hansen, the engineer who crafted the software "patch" that solved the problem, said the company had yet to determine whether the ad-libbed navigational solution, which employed an experimental NASA-supplied system on the lander, might have been a factor in the spacecraft's sideways landing.


    Newly released images taken by NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft showed Odysseus as a tiny speck on the moon's surface, within a mile (1.5 km) of its intended landing site near a crater called Malapert A.

    Intuitive Machines also released images Odysseus captured during its descent, but there were none yet from the surface.


    The company said during its first post-landing news briefing on Friday that Odysseus caught the bottom of one of its six landing legs on the uneven lunar surface on final descent and tipped over, coming to rest horizontally, apparently propped up on a rock.


    Intuitive Machines executives speculated that the forward speed of the spacecraft on landing, about twice as fast as expected, may have been a factor in stumbling. But it remained uncertain whether use of the original laser range finders might have made a difference.

    In any case, Odysseus' sideways posture substantially limited how much its solar panels were exposed to sunlight, necessary for recharging its batteries. Moreover, two of its antennae were pointed toward the ground, impeding communications with the lander, the company said on Friday.


    Intuitive Machines executives said then that its engineering teams would need more time to assess how the overall mission would be affected.


    In an update posted online on Monday, the Houston-based company said: "Flight controllers intend to collect data until the lander's solar panels are no longer exposed to light. Based on Earth and Moon positioning, we believe flight controllers will continue to communicate with Odysseus until Tuesday morning," five days after landing.


    NASA, which has several research instruments aboard the vehicle, had said those payloads were designed to operate for seven days on solar energy before the sun set over the polar landing site.


    Company executives had told reporters on Friday, the day after Odysseus landed, that its payloads would be able to function for about nine or 10 days under a "best-case scenario."


    Shares of Intuitive Machines plunged 35% on Monday.


    Despite its less-than-ideal touchdown, Odysseus became the first U.S. spacecraft to land on the moon since NASA's last crewed Apollo mission to the lunar surface brought astronauts Gene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt there in 1972.


    It was also the first lunar landing ever by a commercially manufactured and
    operated space vehicle, and the first under NASA's Artemis program, which aims to return astronauts to Earth's natural satellite this decade.


    Intuitive Machines has said it spent roughly $100 million on the lander, and received $118 million from NASA under the agency's Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) program, a low-budget effort to spur flights to the moon by private enterprise."


    Reporting by Steve Gorman in Los Angeles and Joey Roulette in Washington; Editing by Leslie Adler, Sandra Maler and Gerry Doyle

    reuters.com
    A tray full of GOLD is not worth a moment in time.

  20. #3995
    Thailand Expat harrybarracuda's Avatar
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    The laser range finders - designed to feed altitude and forward-velocity readings to Odysseus' autonomous navigation system - were inoperable because company engineers neglected to unlock the lasers' safety switch before launch on Feb. 15
    I wonder if they will be making deductions from their wages?

  21. #3996
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    Space News thread-built-launched-jpg

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    Elon Musk’s “otherworldly” looking Starlink satellite train

    Aussie towns stunned by space ‘mystery’

  23. #3998
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    The view of a newly launched batch of satellites is stunning. I was able to watch the train on a few early launches.


    A short time later they are at operational altitude and orientation. They become invisible. SpaceX worked hard to achieve that to support astronomy.

  24. #3999
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    A NASA mission to the Moon I am very excited about. The VIPER lunar rover. It is designed to drive into the extremely cold polar craters that have water ice and other volatiles. The sun never reaches the crater bottom so the volatiles remain cold and don't evaporate. Purpose of the mission is to find out what volatiles besides water ice are in there. We have some spectrometer data from an indian experiment but we don't know how much of it is there. Gases like C0, CO2, methane CH4, nitrogen. There may be just traces or there may be useful amounts mixed into the water ice. Time to find out.

    Space News thread-nasa-viper-lunar-lander-jpg
    A test how the rover will drive down from the lander on uneven terrain. The crane hookup is to reduce the active weight of the rover to Moon like conditions.

    A video of another test. This time the weight is reduced to simulate behaviour on the Moon.


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    The lander to put the rover down is another new design, different from the recently failed landing attempts. But NASA seems to get worried about the successrate. Experiments on the failed landers were not so expensive and can easily be replicated. The VIPER rover is different. Much more sophisticated and much more expensive. Also it carries nuclear charges to keep it warm enough for operating inside the dark cold crater. I did not actually check for the nuclear device but there is no other way to keep it operating. NASA really wants this one to be successful.

    They plan to use the also new Griffin lander. With more capacity and more thoroughly tested. Yet it seems they no longer trust the Griffin lander enough to put VIPER on it for the first landing after the recent failures. NASA is presently evaluating their options. Probably contract one more Griffin lander and do a test landing with less valuable payload. But looking at other options too.

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