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Questions tagged [atmosphere]

Questions regarding an envelope of gasses surrounding a celestial body held in place by the body's gravity.

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24
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2answers
2k views

How does Venus' thick atmosphere survive against the solar wind?

The traditional explanation for rocky inner planets and large gaseous outer planets is that the outer planets are farther from the Sun, and therefore can hold onto large atmospheres that don't get ...
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1answer
194 views

Smallest planet where human type life could evolve and survive?

Most exoplanets making the news are larger than Earth. I wonder about the smaller worlds, how small is too small? Reword to keep the question narrow enough to be answerable. When the Earth was ...
3
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1answer
309 views

Why is this “grainy footage” of a Martian (sky) from Curiosity so grainy? Cloud snaps by Opportunity look great!

A paper from the 2017 meeting Lunar and Planetary Sciences XLVIII describes a systematic observation of the Martian sky, with a sequence of eight taken every day at zenith and near-horizon angles. ...
4
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1answer
394 views

What would a Venus sky look like above the cloud tops night and day?

I know it will likely be a yellow haze at the surface level, but I've seen little info about what a Venus sky looks like above the cloud tops or in the midsts of them. Will the sky be blue like on ...
4
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1answer
506 views

Can plants thrive without atmospheric nitrogen?

One of deficit resources on Mars is nitrogen. There's a plenty of carbon dioxide, and a modest amount of water. There's a deficit of nitrogen, but AFAIK plants use nitrogen in compounds found in soil, ...
0
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1answer
149 views

What would the effect be if we placed all of our greenhouse gases on Mars?

I don't know how much greenhouse gases are on our planet but what would happen to Mars if we could contain the gases on Earth somehow and transfer it to the surface of Mars? Ignoring the fact that ...
0
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2answers
544 views

Will Mars ever become breathable for humans?

There are some proposed methods like extracting oxygen from ice in polar caps getting it from the CO2 found in Mars' atmosphere or ... But let's say we finally find a feasible method to produce ...
3
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1answer
1k views

Is there a calculation for determining the thickness of a planet's atmosphere?

I'm wondering if there a way to determine how thick (from the surface to the edge of space(karman line)) a planet's atmosphere would be. Assume an earth body like Earth or Mars (not a gas giant). I ...
9
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1answer
501 views

When Chang'e-3 landed on the moon, did LADEE notice?

The Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) entered lunar orbit 2013-10-06, and Chang'e 3 landed 69 days later producing dust and gas on 2013-12-14. These were both quite interesting ...
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2answers
323 views

Atmosphere on the Moon

Question: How would you make a breathable atmosphere in an artificial closure on the Moon? I originally thought that simply obtaining water from the Moon, sending an electrical current through it to ...
1
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1answer
761 views

Does a planet need an ozone layer to maintain an atmosphere?

Is it possible to build an atmosphere on Mars without an ozone layer? What would trap the gas? Also what is an ozone layer made of?
0
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0answers
62 views

Neural networks applied to micro satellites missions [closed]

I'm really interested in micro satellites, but I'm a beginner. So, for the year-end project of a course called "Neural networks" at University I want to do something related with this. I searched a ...
9
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2answers
693 views

Would an orbital Deep Space Network be more efficient?

Deep Space Network sites in California, Madrid and Canberra perform an excellent job, for example receiving from Voyager 2 (16+ billion km) at -150 dBm power. However, would it be more advantageous ...
11
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1answer
296 views

Is airglow always visible from space?

Looking at time lapses taken from the International Space Station, I discovered that the Earth's atmosphere can glow at night, even when it seems that those pictures were taken far away from auroras. ...
4
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0answers
42 views

Double satellite flare on iridium 6 [duplicate]

Last night here in Southern California, I was watching the flare of the Iridium 6, I use the Sputnik app to alert me. I was amazed when I saw not one but two bright lights tracking simultaneously.. ...
5
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1answer
718 views

Atmospheric scale height, how is it calculated?

Over on SE.Worldbuilding I found myself stuck on figuring what happens to the scale height of an atmosphere if the composition changes (The specific case involved something breathable in place of the ...
3
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1answer
1k views

Mars' atmosphere and the triple point of water

As I understand it, the average atmospheric pressure at the surface of Mars is close to the triple point of water. Is this a coincidence or does water have some sort of controlling effect on Mars' ...
3
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1answer
339 views

Could the Moon be terraformed by outgassing its oxygen?

The majority of the Moon's mass is oxygen. With energy it could chemically be liberated from its silicon et cetera compounds and be turned into oxygen gas. Given its low gravity, lack of magnetosphere ...
15
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2answers
24k views

Could you feel the wind on Mars?

The air pressure on Mars is about 1% that of Earth's at sea level. But wind speeds on Mars can be higher, up to maybe 60 mph sustained (actually I have come across several different figures, some ...
7
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1answer
435 views

Non-vacuum ion propulsion

Are there any ion thrusters which could conceivably provide thrust inside the atmosphere? Not that they'd have enough thrust to take off under their own power, of course; I'm just wondering whether ...
4
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1answer
180 views

First sounding rocket to reach the mesosphere?

The mesosphere (the part of the atmosphere above the stratosphere where temperatures increase with altitude) is generally above the altitude reachable by balloon. It begins somewhere around 50 km. ...
14
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1answer
656 views

Could helmet-fogging occur on Mars, or on any other celestial body with an atmosphere?

When I drive in cold/wet weather the state of the roads is cause for concern. But more worrying is the risk of the wind-screen fogging over when least it should. Space/Earth orbit is a different ...
3
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1answer
175 views

Is there a way to achieve any kind of atmospheric flight on the moon Europa?

I've been searching all over the site and the internet, but I can't find something about it. Is there really no way for a plane, helicopter or quad-copter to fly on the moon Europa? If it is possible,...
0
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1answer
110 views

What exoplanet atmospheres might support life beside our nitrogen and oxygen atmosphere? [closed]

What exoplanet atmospheres might support life beside our nitrogen and oxygen atmosphere? Related question: Could an exoplanet atmosphere be very similar to our own, but contain some component toxic ...
7
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1answer
2k views

How could a hot lander enter Titan's atmosphere without setting its hydrocarbons ablaze?

Whenever a lander enters an atmosphere, it generates a lot of friction and that heats up the heat shield. On Earth we have seen videos of spacecraft with red-hot shields. On Saturn's moon Titan, ...
5
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3answers
369 views

Is there any application for very low thrust engines within atmosphere?

Is there any (current, or planned, or hypothesized) practical application for engines of low thrust - like, below 40N - in the atmosphere? I'm asking this in relation to the Non-vacuum ion propulsion ...
8
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1answer
760 views

A cloud-top colony on Venus, will it drift to the poles?

Suppose a cloud-top colony on Venus. Provided that it has no thrusting engines, where it will tend to go naturally with winds, to the equator, to the poles or elsewhere?
4
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1answer
735 views

How long would a blimp last in Venusian atmosphere at an altitude of 65 km?

It would be the same blimp on Earth, except with some modifications like anti-corrosion coating. The blimp will use helium as the gas to keep it aloft. Would it last long enough to be useful?
3
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1answer
400 views

How to produce oxygen out of Venusian atmosphere's carbon dioxide?

What are the possible methods of in-situ extraction of oxygen from the atmosphere of Venus, which is mostly carbon dioxide?
10
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3answers
692 views

Strategies for combating ESD and ground plane potential shifts on spacecraft charging?

What are some common design guidelines/practices to combat the electrical effects of spacecraft charging(e.g. ESD, ground plane shift). Is it to focus on more resilient parts, and reduce resistance/...
0
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2answers
131 views

Faster alternative to travel to any location in the west

Suppose one needs to travel to Somalia from Indonesia(which are approximately at a distance of $4000$ miles from each other on the line of equator). To accomplish this task, I suggest the following ...
12
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1answer
467 views

Does Venus have doldrums or horse latitudes (latitudes with lower winds)?

Because of all the heat fueling convection cells, Venus has some brisk winds especially in the upper atmosphere (up to 370 km/h). I realize the winds are quite slow at the surface, but are there any ...
8
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1answer
1k views

Limits of bypass ratio in air-augmented (ejector-jet/ducted) rocket

Air-augmented rockets have not historically been very successful. In most cases, adding a shroud around the outside of an existing rocket was a large weight cost in exchange for only a modest increase ...
11
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1answer
1k views

Why is the Karman line for Mars defined higher than for Earth?

In an answer to a similar question, the Karman Line for Mars is stated as being at 125km compared to 122km for Earth. However, Mars has an atmospheric pressure about 1/10 that of Earth, its ...
7
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2answers
90 views

Monoatomic species at orbital altitudes

Besides monoatomic oxygen, what other monoatomic or chemically reactive atmospheric or environmental constituents, if any, are present at orbital altitudes that aren't present at lower altitudes, and ...
7
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1answer
284 views

What is the problem with pressure?

Among other reasons, the high pressure of Venus and the gas giants atmospheres are often stated as one of the major problems for an unmanned lander. They say the pressure will "crush" the probe. Why ...
5
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1answer
1k views

Re-entry Dynamics

I've been reading around a lot and I haven't been able to find any clear explanations. Maybe I'm a bit confused or maybe I am just looking in the wrong places. My question is, what are some basic ...
10
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1answer
7k views

If Mars had more atmosphere how warm would it be?

Looking at Venus, Earth and Mars, the closer you are to the sun the warmer you are. At the same time the warmer planets also have thicker atmospheres. ...
2
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2answers
309 views

Flying in Thin Atmosphere [closed]

How thin could at atmosphere be before it could not be flown in using a modern plane? Does speed affect this to a reasonable degree?
19
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1answer
2k views

Air in International Space Station

How do astronauts/cosmonauts manage the atmosphere at the International Space Station as their missions are years long, versus shorter flights? Do they recycle? Import via cargo vessels? Electrolyze ...
1
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1answer
98 views

Martian atmosphere's effect on radiation?

The atmosphere of Mars protects it's surface from micrometeorites. How significantly does the Martian atmosphere reduce radiation in comparison with, for example, the Moon's surface or open space?
2
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4answers
829 views

Is powered descent from orbit a viable method of reentry on bodies with an atmosphere?

Pretty much like the title says. Beyond a simple (one or more) retro burn into unpowered plummeting into the atmosphere, is some form of powered descent a viable method of reentry from orbit on ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What are the fast-moving, bright things I saw July 25, 2015 at night?

I am an amateur in space, and I usually read here to better my understanding. I was camping Saturday night (July 25, 2015), and while I was looking at the sky I noticed a bright object moving really ...
1
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1answer
145 views

Orbital insertion by rotating shaft

Consider the following idea for inserting a human on the surface of the earth into orbit: In orbit, attach a long (~80km) rigid shaft to a large weight (presumably an asteroid) and set it spinning. ...
11
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1answer
385 views

What causes Pluto's atmosphere to recede/collapse?

An answer to this question sparked my curiosity. Pluto's atmosphere seems to come and go depending on its orbital position and distance from the Sun. If the heat up from coming closer to the Sun ...
13
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4answers
3k views

When does an aerobraking space craft create a sonic boom?

There are a lot of variables with the speed of sound, a sonic boom is created when all of those variables meet. the speed of sound, a critical speed known as Mach 1, and is approximately 1,225 km/h ...
7
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0answers
214 views

Convective heat transfer on rocket during ascent

I'm looking for a way to (very) roughly estimate the convective heat transfer onto a rocket hull during atmospheric ascent (ideally through different planetary atmospheres). While I'm comfortable with ...
18
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2answers
2k views

Can it be said that Venus is covered by an ocean rather than atmosphere?

At Venusian temperatures and pressures, CO2 becomes supercritical. This means it behaves as a dense liquid yet has no clear upper bound and continuously becomes gas with height. Can we thus say that ...
17
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3answers
8k views

How do you 'make oxygen' on Mars?

This morning's BBC News says that a 2020 rover mission to Mars will "make oxygen". There is a brief line indication that it will extract it from atmospheric CO₂, but no other details. What process ...
4
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1answer
127 views

What differences from conventional aerodynamics would result from a thinner atmosphere?

Propulsion modules have been adapted to cope in earth's atmosphere. However what are some of the differences that would have to be taken into account if one was ever to fly in a thicker or thinner ...