Community Digest

Top new questions this week:

Is the NASA worm logo back?

I love the NASA "worm" logo, but they retired it in 1992. Now an article on CollectSpace claims that the worm is officially authorized again: "The worm is back!" NASA Administrator Jim ...

asked by DrSheldon 25 votes
answered by Auberron 37 votes

Were crew assignments ever made to avoid grouping astronauts with similar first names?

Thinking primarily of the Apollo missions with this question, but could be expanded in an answer with a more general response, if appropriate... With several Apollo-era astronauts sharing ...

apollo-program crewed-spaceflight  
asked by Milwrdfan 15 votes
answered by Organic Marble 16 votes

Why did SpaceX swap the LOX and CH4 tanks between Mk1 and SN1?

According to most sources, the Starship Mk.1 had its LOX main tank (not talking about the header tanks here) on top and its main methane tank below. But it seems the SN1 revision, and all subsequent ...

spacex rockets propulsion spacex-starship cryogenics  
asked by Piotr 11 votes

Did any spacecraft ever use the Sun's gravity for acceleration?

Space probes often use planets to accelerate onto a trajectory towards their goal(s) without having to consume too much fuel. But the fastest acceleration would be made through the Sun's gravity if ...

gravity trajectory the-sun uncrewed-spaceflight acceleration  
asked by user30007 9 votes
answered by Oscar Lanzi 13 votes

Is it possible to achieve a perfectly circular orbit?

Is it possible for a spacecraft to achieve an orbit around a celestial body that has no orbital eccentricity at all? The smallest orbital eccentricity of a natural satellite is that of Triton's orbit ...

orbit orbital-elements free-fall  
asked by user30007 9 votes
answered by GdD 8 votes

Orbit stability

This is my first question. I am a space enthusiast but I don't have a formal understanding of celestial mechanics, so I would like to ask how stable against perturbation an orbit is, given the ...

orbital-mechanics stability  
asked by Unai Vivi 8 votes
answered by Tom Spilker 5 votes

Why are balloon tanks used by so few rocket designs?

Balloon tanks, first used on the MX-774 sounding rocket (the direct, though distant, ancestor of the Atlas family of missiles and launchers), are structurally stabilised by internal gas pressure, ...

launch-vehicle tanks structural-design  
asked by Sean 8 votes

Greatest hits from previous weeks:

How stable would a Falcon 9 first stage be after it has landed on a drone ship?

Presumably, the booster would be a very light, very tall tube (Most of the fuel spent) standing on 4 fairly small legs on a ship in the middle of the ocean. It would also still contain some LOX and ...

spacex falcon-9 reuse falcon9-r first-stage  
asked by neelsg 20 votes
answered by TildalWave 13 votes

Was there really a shuttle toilet training device with a "boresight camera"?

Was there really a shuttle toilet training device with a camera looking up at the user's fundament? This seems a bit undignified to say the least.

space-shuttle astronaut-lifestyle training  
asked by Organic Marble 49 votes
answered by Organic Marble 55 votes

Can I drive Elon Musk's Tesla after it's been in space for 100 Years?

We know that the the payload of the maiden Falcon Heavy flight will be... Elon Musks's Tesla Which will be placed in "Mars Orbit" Assuming it is serviced and road ready when launched with the keys ...

spacex spacecraft falcon-heavy nonstandard-payload tesla-roadster  
asked by James Jenkins 61 votes
answered by Hobbes 90 votes

How does Voyager 1 send signals to Earth?

I recently studied that Voyager 1 has traveled a distance of 125.01 AU as of August 3rd, 2013. I wonder, how would it be able to communicate with the Earth? How much time does it take for the signal ...

voyager communication  
asked by Hash 38 votes
answered by TildalWave 38 votes

Does the space shuttle fly straight "up" when leaving Earth?

I was watching space shuttle launch recently, and at 2:53 you can see the space shuttle from an angle, even though it's high above the earth and you should see only the bottom. Does the space shuttle ...

launch space-shuttle  
asked by Buksy 27 votes
answered by mpv 37 votes

Is it possible for a moon to have a higher surface gravity than the planet it is attached to?

Is it possible that a moon has a higher surface gravity than its planet? I guess it would mean that the moon has a higher mass, but then it would be the planet gravitating around the moon and the ...

orbital-mechanics gravity planetary-science physics moons  
asked by Lucile Bellamy 47 votes
answered by Anthony X 93 votes

Why destroy Juno at the end of the mission?

As follows from the mission timeline: Launch - August 5, 2011 Deep Space Maneuvers - August/September 2012 Earth flyby gravity assist - October 2013 Jupiter arrival - July 2016 Spacecraft will orbit ...

juno end-of-life orbital-lifetime  
asked by Creative Magic 86 votes
answered by Mark Adler 124 votes

Can you answer these questions?

How to estimate that receiving GNSS signals Earth while orbiting the Moon will still provide locations to about 200 meters of uncertainty?

IEEE Spectrum's Can Astronauts Use GPS to Navigate on the Moon? NASA Scientists Say Yes says: Kar-Ming Cheung and Charles Lee of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California did the math, and ...

the-moon navigation gps gnss  
asked by uhoh 2 votes

Orbit transfer trajectory options to the moon

I am working on a project for a lunar flyby using a CubeSat. I was wondering what kind of trajectory transfer options are present and which one would be best for a CubeSat? I'm aiming for a transfer ...

orbital-mechanics the-moon orbital-maneuver cubesat flyby  
asked by Bruce Vici 1 vote
answered by Petri J.C. Flander 0 votes

Challenges in using linux based COTS for Cubesat mission payloads

Most of the questions related to using linux is cubesat/space missions is for the flight computer. I understand that a RTOS is preferred over a full blown linux for a flight computer. However I am ...

cubesat software  
asked by Vinmean 1 vote
answered by GremlinWranger 0 votes
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