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22

I was actually just reading a great What If? article on this found here. Flight on other planets is possible. I think the included comic strip summarizes it wonderfully: As for each valid body in our solar system (barring Earth of course), I'm going to paraphrase a bit: The Sun: Attempting flight on the sun is more or less useless as any vessel close ...


10

Sure. That would save a fair bit of weight, avoiding the tankage, insulation, and cooling systems to maintain liquid hydrogen, or alternatively, the mass of the pressure tank for gaseous hydrogen. You'd need to bring the oxygen. You actually don't save much weight due to the hydrogen itself, which is only $1\over 9$ of the total propellant mass. You can ...


9

It would be quite easy. As you mentioned, the wind speed is roughly 300 km/hour, in the clouds, where Venus is the most hospitable. The same article mentions that oscillations of the atmosphere happen every 4.8 Earth days. Hot air balloons move at about the same speed as the wind around them. Thus, a hot air balloon should be able to circumnavigate Venus in ...


8

So far, we have only two actual examples of balloons deployed into Venusian atmosphere, the two Vega program balloons from June 1985. They were identical in design, 3.4 m diameter helium filled balloons made of teflon cloth matrix coated with teflon film, each with a gondola suspended on a 13 m long tether. You can read more about them on Goddard Space ...


8

Venus has been closely studied for a long time. In fact in 1961 it was the second object (the moon was the first) to be radar mapped from Earth. Also in 1961 the Soviets sent a probe that did a flyby but due to a malfunction it wasn't until 1962 when the American Mariner 2 spacecraft, which flew past Venus. A modified Ranger Moon probe, it established that ...


8

They plan to use some form of "site evaluation" to prevent tipping over: However, technology developments in the last two decades, notably the revolution in availability of multi- rotor drones a made possible by modern compact sensors and autopilots as well as the development of sensing and control capabilities for autonomous landing and site ...


8

From that linked Wikipedia page: Several NASA Research Centers have noted its unique ability to fly on the planet Mars. Fixed wing aerial Mars rovers would have to fly at over 250 mph just to stay aloft in the rarefied Mars atmosphere. This is for an entomopter with a 15 to 18cm wingspan. Anthony Colozza's paper at the Ohio Aerospace Institute, has this: ...


7

Aerobots occupy an intermediate position between landers and orbiters. Turns out they cannot do well some things that these two are capable of. No ability to do geological studies. A big objection if you remember the main drive in planetary exploration today - the search for life, present or extant, or at least habitable conditions. You simply cannot have a ...


7

In tradition with the mentioned Jules Verne's Around the World in Eighty Days, this would take a fair deal of imagination to achieve, but yes. Let's see what our cheat sheet could look like: The length of one Venusian solar day is equal to 116 Earth solar days and 18 Earth hours, so 8 Venusian days translate to 22,416 Earth hours. Assuming we travel West to ...


7

The concept was not a glider, but powered. It used storable biprop propellant rocket thrusters to fly at best for 81 minutes at 140 m/s. That comes out to a 680 km flight. With margins applied for mass growth during development, the range would be at or above the science requirement of 500 km. Once the propellant runs out, then it is a glider, but not ...


6

According to this documentation (PDF) from 2012 on mission implementation of The Aerial Regional-scale Environmental Surveyor (ARES) Concepts and Approaches for Mars Exploration by Levine et al., NASA Langley Research Center: Transition, extraction, and deployment of the ARES aerial vehicle use proven methods demonstrated during the airplane technology ...


4

The paper Astrobee:Developing a Free-flyingRobot for the International Space Station explains the propulsion system rougly in two sentence: Astrobee’s propulsion system consists of a propulsion module on each of two sides of the free flyer (Figure3). Each module includes a centrifugal fan that pressurizes the module, and nozzles on the x, y, and z axes to ...


3

Hydrogen breathing jet engines Since the gravity of of Jupiter is three time stronger than Earth so we need to create three time the lift that we create in earth to lift the craft. But hydrogen fueled aircraft are more powerful and we use then to attain hypersonic flight in Earth. The main problem with this is that materials at such high temperature would ...


3

I think the Int-Ball uses all fans in a "push-configuration" and only does have passive air inlets in it's chassis. The internals of the chassis are therefore "empty" enough to enable sufficient airflow to the fans. On this website if found a picture credited to JAXA: You can see those "Air inlets" in your first picture at the bottom of the drone.


3

Here is a selection of robotic equipment that has been at/in/on the ISS, feel free to add additional references: Cell Biology Experiment Facility (CBEF) can autonomously control a centrifuge, among other functions. While holding at 1G may fall under the "routine movement" section of the question, the centrifuge can alternate between a range of gees, which ...


2

According to the SPHERES Wikipedia page, SmartSPHERES experiment equipped the three SPHERES satellite aboard the International Space Station with Nexus S smartphones that were delivered via the Space Shuttle mission STS-135. Each satellite was enhanced through the use of processing power, wireless networking, camera, sensors and the touch sensitive ...


2

Lift = Cl*0.5*(density)*(velocity)^2*Area. There are three variables that can be optimized to achieve the proper lift to remain in flight in Jupiter; density, velocity, and wing area. Increasing wing area adds weight and makes the vehicle more difficult to launch from earth. Maintaining a high velocity will require higher thrust and would expend more ...


2

Venus would appear to be the most practical, not Titan (one HAS to factor the cold). Yes, it's so hot on Venus it melts lead at 621 degrees F. However, lead is a soft metal and it's heavy. We don't build aircraft out of lead. Aluminum melts at 1,218 degrees Fahrenheit (F) and Titanium melts at 3,200 degrees F. The Lockheed SR-71, flying at Mach 3+, was ...


1

Drag is a resultant vector that accumulates from integrating all forces in contact with the body over the entire surface. For the most part, this comes in two forms: pressure (normal to the surface) and shear stress (tangent to the surface). The key thing to obtain drag is to extract the components of these forces aligned with the direction of the flow. ...


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