Questions tagged [identify-this-object]

Questions which ask for an object in a photograph or other media to be identified and/or have its function described.

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27
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1answer
4k views

What is this large fan in front of the Space Shuttle during Ground Turnaround?

In this amazing video of multiple camera angles of Endeavour landing and post-landing processing, at around the 15:45–15:56 minute mark, we see a large propeller running in front of the Orbiter. It ...
13
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2answers
2k views

What happens differently when ISS is inside this red boundary (Russia & Europe & …)?

The question Why are there advertisements in the Russian ISS flight control room? shows the image below. There is a large red boundary that looks like the boundary of the overlap of several circles ...
15
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1answer
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What's the shiny silver turnip on the bottom of this Ariane 5 launcher?

The beautiful cutaway drawing included in this answer shows a metallic turnip-shaped object attached to the bottom of the Ariane V core stage. What is that object?
2
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1answer
84 views

How to identify an object in orbit last night?

I saw an object last night (November 24, 2019) in the sky that was rather unusual and am curious about what it might have been. It had the luminosity and speed of movement across the sky (generally ...
1
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1answer
55 views

What is the purpose of the pairs of cylinders on the interstage of PSLV?

In the following images, it can be seen that the interstage (separating the first stage PS1 and the second stage PS2) of the Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (...
6
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1answer
92 views

What is the reason behind the chromatic aberration on this DISCOVR picture?

Earlier in a question on this website, I saw the following picture: If you look to the right side of the moon, you will see a massive yellow transparent area. I am wondering what caused the yellow, ...
3
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1answer
89 views

How often did Apollo astronauts wear red helmets?

Images of NAsA astronaut David R. Scott performing a spacewalk during Apollo 9 show a red helmet. When did NASA's use of red-colored helmets begin, and when did it end, and was there a special name ...
10
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2answers
2k views

What antenna is this in an Apollo 15 LM photo?

The video Apollo 15 landing from PDI to Touchdown (found in Why did the Apollo 15 LM violently shake & raise dust after the contact probes touched the lunar surface?) seems to pan across a still ...
2
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1answer
116 views

What is the purpose and necessity of this giant structure being used in tests of China's Mars lander?

Question: What is the purpose and necessity of this giant structure being used in tests of landing hovering and searching techniques to be used by China's Mars lander? It is shown in images (and a ...
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2answers
88 views

What are these Soyuz Astronauts/Cosmonauts holding in their hands before launch? [duplicate]

What are these Soyuz Astronauts/Cosmonauts holding in their left hands before launch? I suspect it must be the pump for the active cooling system by pumping water similar to those in EVA suits, but it ...
4
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1answer
105 views

What's the puffy fabric-like material around the upper stage at launch of Ranger 5?

The Ranger 5 mission launched 57 years ago today. In a photograph of the launch, there's an irregular shroud of wrinkled white material either next to or wrapped around the upper Agena stage of the ...
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What is the utility of this peanut-shaped ground facility?

The following image is from GSLV-F11 GSAT-7A Mission: Location: Second Launch Pad (SLP), Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota, India. Please click here in case you want to see the image in ISRO's ...
3
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1answer
221 views

What are SpaceX's Starship's header tanks?

In the Everyday Astronaut video A conversation with Elon Musk about Starship after about 13:00 Musk shows Dodd a cell phone video that he shot in the top(?) of the ...
3
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1answer
217 views

What are these things in Elon Musk's tweeted Starship video?

I don't understand what I'm looking at in the video of this Elon Musk tweet. The text says: Just leaving SpaceX Starship build site in Boca These are reminiscent of funhouse mirrors. What are ...
2
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1answer
98 views

For which “2 billion dollar spacecraft launched in 1999” did NASA “specially design” an Aronson Trolley Positioner?

This answer to What are those tilting/rotating platforms called that hold spacecraft during assembly, testing, and sometimes transport? quotes this Weld Plus website as follows: (The) Aronson ...
2
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1answer
157 views

Why does Curiosity have two images of itself on itself, or is one a QR-code?

The first image in CNN"s New images show Mars as you've never seen it before shows a partial "selfie" by the Curiosity rover which includes what looks like two images on the rover itself. The one on ...
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1answer
78 views

What are those tilting/rotating platforms called that hold spacecraft during assembly, testing, and sometimes transport? [duplicate]

The first image from the BBC's Euclid space telescope to study 'dark Universe' makes progress reminded me of the second two, which are taken from What are these air-vent-like structures on this ...
2
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1answer
97 views

What did Luna 3's illuminator illuminate and why did it need a cover?

This comment below this answer to How was it possible for the Apollo 11 to film and take pictures with such radiation? links to the svengrahn.pp.se post Luna 3 - the first view of the moon's far side. ...
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1answer
66 views

Is this a NASA building in the background?

The Washington Post video It's looking more and more likely there will be a Tropical Storm Humberto near Florida shows some footage with the caption "Titusville Fla." and I've included a screen shot ...
3
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2answers
135 views

Does this image of 91-core OTRAG “asparagus-staging” show a real launch, or is it “space-art”?

This answer to Were there any non-state organizations to organize space flight and colonizations in the second half of the 20th century? mentions OTRAG and links to Astronautix's OTRAG page. The ...
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1answer
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What do all these vectors point to in this New Horizons trajectory/operations simulation?

Sir Brian May's New Horizons music video (below) shows an animation of the spacecraft and its launch vehicle from countdown to MU69 Ultima Thule. Part way through the video at about ...
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2answers
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Features seen on the Space Shuttle's solid booster; what does “LOADED” mean exactly?

The question Please explain the time reference shown in Shuttle launch engineering video links to the very cool video Ascent - Commemorating Shuttle. After about ...
5
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1answer
185 views

Why does this photo of the Hubble Space Telescope look so weird?

Question: Can someone identify this photograph of the Hubble Space Telescope seen as a still in the Los Angeles Times YouTube video Scientists witness huge cosmic crash, find origins of gold, figure ...
21
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1answer
1k views

Function of the separated, individual solar cells on Telstar 1 and 2? Why were they “special”?

The image below shows a part of a backup satellite for Telstar 1 and 2. In addition to the many small and highly segmented solar panels, there are what look like individual elements of the same kind ...
3
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1answer
145 views

What is a propellant burner trailer?

CNN and NPR have pointed out that the US president recently tweeted a surveillance photo of an explosion of a rocket on a launch pad. One of the items identified in the photo is labeled as a ...
2
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1answer
101 views

Which Apollo 12 astronaut is shown examining the Surveyor 3 lander in this photograph?

I used this image in Exactly what was Surveyor 3 doing with a spring-loaded boxing glove-like device? but in the captions for the image on two NASA sites I noticed a disagreement in the identify of ...
2
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1answer
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Exactly what was Surveyor 3 doing with a spring-loaded boxing glove-like device?

The thorough moon.NASA.gov/exploration page Moon Missions shows the image below. I learned almost all of what I know about Physics and Engineering from the Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner cartoons,...
3
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2answers
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Stanley Kubrick used a NASA-inspired lens to film by candlelight in Barry Lyndon, but what did NASA use it for?

At 07:35 in the CinemaTyler video How Kubrick Achieved the Beautiful Cinematography of Barry Lyndon he says: As far back as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Kubrick and ...
2
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1answer
115 views

Saint Elmo's fire on the ISS? What are these green glowing balls of plasma on a solar panel? Dangerous?

This tweet says: Almost the entire population of Egypt lives within a few miles of the Nile. But my eye is on the green glowing balls on what looks like it might be a solar panel. Question: What ...
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1answer
223 views

Does this Soyuz vehicle burn coal or oil? What is its official name?

This tweet shows the image below and says: Soyuz rocket on its way to the launch pad (on a train of course). Question: Does this Soyuz vehicle (a train engine) burn coal or oil? Does it have an ...
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1answer
145 views

What cubesats are these, what flags are on them, and why? What's the background story?

This tweet includes the image below and says: Cubesats deploying from ISS. Question: What cubesats are these, what flags are on them, and why? What's the background story? Cropped, magnified and ...
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2answers
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What are these circular spots on these Ariane V SRB nozzles?

This Space Shuttle Almanac tweet says: Pics 1-4 of todays @Arianespace #ArianeV VA249 launch carrying the #EDRSC & #Intelsat39 comsats from Kourou and includes the cool (hot) image below. ...
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0answers
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Why do these satellite antennas look so weird? (strangely shaped with little white dots…)

The NASA Spaceflight article Arianespace press onward with dual-passenger Ariane 5 launch shows a photo of Intelsat 39 during testing. The dish reflectors are strangely shaped: rather than being ...
6
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1answer
264 views

What is Tesseract's “secret sauce”? (green propellant)

TechCrunch's Tesseract makes spacecraft propulsion smaller, greener, stronger tells us to "ditch the hazmat suits" and https://www.tesseract.space/products-and-services lists the Lyra 22 (i.e. 22 ...
3
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1answer
137 views

What kind of camera was used to produce this Apollo-era footage of the Earth?

The question Reflected Earth is 1/3 the size of primary Earth in Apollo footage through spacecraft window; why? begins: In the video Brian Eno on Apollo at 08:20 ...
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3answers
2k views

What is this spacecraft tethered to another spacecraft in LEO (vintage)

In the really nice video Brian Eno on Apollo at 03:40 there is (possibly Apollo-era but not necessarily Apollo) footage of a spacecraft tethered to another ...
5
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1answer
418 views

Humanoid silhouette on SpaceX's Starhopper; what does it represent?

update: The silhouette now has a page in Wikimedia Commons: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Hughmann_for_scale.svg The images below are from a NASA Spaceflight forum post and can be seen in @...
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0answers
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What do these three historical IBM staff at NASA insignias designate?

The question Where are these historical IBM + Apollo related locations within NASA? What do these computers do? shows four images. Three of them show different IBM insignias on shirts of IBM staff. ...
4
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1answer
155 views

Where are these historical IBM + Apollo related locations within NASA? What do these computers do?

In the Fortune Magazine video IBM's Moonshot: Past and Future with the notes BM’s John Kelly reflects on Apollo 11’s historic mission and looks forward to what future technology will accomplish. ...
4
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0answers
106 views

Why does this “Midas missile early warning satellite” have a tilting cone with such a complex black-and-white checkerboard pattern?

Clicking on images of historic satellites led me to the airvectors.net page Foundations Of Automated Space Technology which includes this image and passage: A number of Samos satellites were also ...
4
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1answer
272 views

Help understanding this Apollo 11 docking probe image, what are we looking at, and from where?

The New York Times mix media "article" Apollo 11 As They Shot It shows original photographic images taken by the astronauts and related quotes by them. In one section the text says: Inspecting the ...
24
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1answer
3k views

In this iconic lunar orbit rendezvous photo of John Houbolt, why do arrows #5 and #6 point the “wrong” way?

The NPR.org news item Meet John Houbolt: He Figured Out How To Go To The Moon, But Few Were Listening shows the iconic photo of John Houbolt next to a black board showing a free return scenario. I ...
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2answers
2k views

What was this capsule dropped from a truck?

I've been watching the PBS American Experience documentary, and they showed a brief clip of some accidents at NASA. One involved a capsule being carried on the back of a truck, on some kind of crane. ...
6
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2answers
270 views

What are the bumps on the Vega rocket

In the image below, we see some bumps at the conical section of what I believe is the transition from the first to the second stage. What function do they serve? Image credit: Wikimedia Commons
3
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1answer
134 views

What exactly are Tindallgrams? (spaceflight related)

The word "Tindallgram" appears in three posts: this answer to How complex was the math and physics necessary to place Apollo 11 on the moon? What is a “Lear Processor” and how did it work? this ...
2
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1answer
466 views

What is this red spacesuit made out of, and why is it red?

The BBC News website often uses this file photo on spaceflight-related pages such as this one. Is it possible to identify the following? the astronaut the spacecraft the spacesuit the external red ...
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0answers
207 views

What are these white cylindrical objects pointed in different directions in this photo of the Saturn V instrument unit?

The BBC News article Apollo in 50 Numbers; The Technology shows an image of the Saturn V's computer along with the caption: The Saturn V's computer was probably the largest computer ever blasted ...
5
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0answers
153 views

What's this purple donut in the video of the Falcon 9 fairing's atmospheric reentry?

This SpaceX tweet (found in CNET's SpaceX camera captures incredible view of rocket part returning to Earth) shows a video taken by a camera in one half of the fairing on the recent STP-2 mission and ...
6
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1answer
281 views

How do you plot a porkchop plot like this one?

I was looking around for gravity gradients then got sidetracked by looking at pork-chop plots because they're extremely cool. I'm still struggling to fully understand them, but I did find an ...
9
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2answers
828 views

Apollo Mission Operations Control Room 2 display, what do these numbers indicate?

There are some really beautiful photos in Ars Technica's NASA’s restored Apollo Mission Control is a slice of ’60s life, frozen in amber See also NYTimes' NASA Reopens Apollo Mission Control Room ...