The Astronomy, Technology, and Space Science News Podcast.
SpaceTime Series 25 Episode 15
*Counting down to a crash on the Moon
A four tonne Falcon 9 upper stage booster will crash into the Moon on March 4th – hitting the lunar surface at over nine...
The Astronomy, Space, Technology & Science News Podcast.
SpaceTime S25E15 AI Transcript
This is space time series 25 episode 15 for broadcasts on the 4th of February, 2022. Coming up on space time, counting down to a crash on the moon. The James Webb space, telescope bridges, its final destination, and the earliest known report of the mysterious phenomenon known as ball lightning. All that and more coming up on space time.
Welcome to space time with Stuart, Gary
Uh, fault Tom Falcon, nine upper stage booster or crashing into the murder March the fourth, hitting the lunar surface at over 9,000 kilometers per hour. The booster was part of a rocket launch seven years ago, carrying nurses, deep space COVID observatory discover spacecraft into orbit at the LA grungy and L one position, a sort of stable gravitational.
Well where the gravitational pull between the sun and the earth balance each other. Right. Since that 2015 mission, the upper stage Falcon nine booster is been in a chaotic orbit that orbit syrup past close to the moon on January the fifth and this close encounter alter the boosters orbit, placing it on a course that will see it collide with the moon on March the fourth, slamming into the, in the far side, somewhere around the Hertz sprang crazy.
Well, the impact won't be visible from earth. NASA's lunar, reconnaissance, orbiter, and India's Chandra, and to space craft should be able to image any impact credit created by the collision. Of course, spacecraft have crashed under the moon before, after all people have been filling space with space junk for years and site is there even crest, some spacecraft on the lunar surface delivery.
During the Apollo era, uh, sat satin Lawrence vehicle booster was deliberately crashed onto the moon to test seismic equipment lift by the Apollo astronauts. Those seismic measurements we use to help characterize the lunar interior and in 2009 NASA set a booster stage hurling under the lunar south pole.
In order to look for signs of water in the impact that Jachter this space-time still the calm. The James Webb space telescope reaches its final destination. And the earliest known report of a phenomenon known as ball lightening in England, all that, and more still to come I'm space time.
Mrs. James Webb space. Telescope is finally arrived at its new home LaGrand, G and L to position a gravitational well one and a half million kilometers away on the opposite side of the earth from the sun. The final five-minute over the insertion burned by its onboard thrusters placed the $10 billion observatory into a halo orbit around Elsa.
We absorb it. We'll allow it to get a wide view of the cosmos at any given moment, as well as an opportunity for the telescopes optics and scientific instruments to cool down enough to function and perform optimal science. The James Webb space telescope was launched on December the 25th last year, about an Ariane five rocket from the European space agencies, curious spaceport in French Guiana.
Mission managers have used as little propellors as possible, for course, corrections during the journey. So as to leave as much fuel as possible on board for ordinary station, keeping operations over its lifetime. Meanwhile, the telescopes continuing the delicate three month long process of aligning its optics.
James Webb's primary mirror is a six and a half meter dammit, a gold coated beryllium reflector composed of 18 hexagonal segment. The telescope will provide improved infrared resolution and sensitivity over Hubble viewing objects a hundred times fainter it'll look back through space, time, more than 13 and a half billion years, allowing us Chalmers to see some of the oldest, the most distant objects in the universe, including the first stars to shine the birth of the earliest galaxies and the atmospheres of distant worlds, which could support.
The James Webb space. Telescope is a feature in this month issue of Australian sky and telescope magazine. Joining us now with the details is the magazine's editor. Jonathan Nalli I'll cover story. This month in Australia has gone. Telescope is all about the next biggest making things. The James Webb space telescope or JWST, or we'll just call it.
It's the next generation of over the exhibit it's named after James Webb, who was an early head of NASA from, and you'll sometimes hear it described as the successor to the Hubble space telescope, in some ways it is, um, as it's you were in bigger than Hubble, of course, but in other ways, it isn't so size is really important when it comes to telescopes, particularly the size of the main mirror.
It really does matter with telescopes because the more light gathering power. Yeah. The you can see and the finder, you can see Maine further away. You can see those things that are further away. I find it. So Hubble has a mirror. That's 2.4 meters in diameter. The James Webb space telescope mirror will be 6.5 meters in diameter.
That's much, much bigger, much bigger now, whereas Hubble was optimized to do its thing with normal optical wavelengths, plus a little bit of ultraviolet and infrared Weidman's as well. Where does mostly optimized to do inference? Uh, now infrared means it will pick up a lot of very, very deem or, and, or very, very distant objects.
And what we're talking about here, primarily, although I will do other things as well, but primarily it's intended to look back through time through the universe, to the emergence of the very first stars and galaxies. Now how about it's taken us quite a long way back on that journey, but the James Webb space telescope will take, as they said, the thing is that, um, w we've all heard of red shift.
So what's happening is that. The wavelengths of light that were emitted by the first start in galaxies, a white man were admitted at normal plain lengths. If you want to call it that by the time I've reached out, they've all gone very infrared. So you need, um, a telescope that is optimized for that. So infrared, you can think of it as just being hate.
So in the magazine, we take a look at the amazing technologies that will make this telescope work from its bold covet mirrors. If you believe it or not, the mirrors are not made of glass. And they're covered in gold because it's really good for reflecting this kind of these particular white men. It almost goes back to the times, the very first telescopes that use metals instead of glass mirrors.
I think the great Melbourne telescope was like that, wasn't it? Yeah. It was made of speculum. Yeah, it was made of made of metal. Um, the particular metal to making this one off, which they have made this one, um, is, is, is very low expansion. What that means is that, um, as it hates and. What's your project. You shouldn't do much off, but as it does it, um, some materials will expand in and correct when they, when they're heated or cooled.
Uh, this particular metal is meant to keep medicated shape. So you really want to keep the shape of a mirror as precise as possible. So you don't want things to be expanding or cooling with changes in temperature. And again, to keep it at the right temperature, it's going to have this amazing. Oh, ultra thin hate shields that will protect it from the heat of the sun.
With infrared being basically hate. You need to remove any sources of hate from the telescope and its cameras and everything itself. So those sorts of hate don't overwhelm the very faint infrared wavelengths coming into the things that you're supposed to be looking at. So it's going to be in deep freeze and kept as cold as.
In order to do its job. So really amazing machine. Is that why it's located in the grungy and L two position on the opposite side of the earth to the sun, with the Hubble telescope? Um, it's just orbiting the earth goes around the random, random, fairly low over 500 guys or something like that, approximately.
And that's they, they did that with Hubble because they want it to be able to get up to it with space. And do these periodic upgrades. And as it turned out in the end, do periodic repairs as well. So that was brilliant for all that and other work well, because as I said, it was mainly operating at what we call optical wavelengths, the sort of normal LightWave link, but a little bit of infrared, a little bit about your thoughts, because James says needs to look at the infrared part of spectrum at needs to get away.
Oh, potential sources of eight, including the us itself. So they're getting it away from the hate of the earth. The us just never reflects the hate from the sunlight and everything. Um, but yeah, they just want to get as far away as they need to from the earth eight doesn't contaminate the observations from the time.
But not so far away, that takes a long time to get signals back and forth. That kind of thing. It is so far away that they, you know, it's on its own. They won't be any emissions or regulations or anything like that. So once it gets out there, it'll be doing its job properly decades just on the sun. But yeah, that, that is originally is to get away from hate basically purely natural.
Cause there were other people involved, other aspects and she's involved in. So it's an international mission and just like Hubble, once it's up there, it will operate as an international observatory has so many different scientific facilities all around the world, not just telescopes, but all sorts of other labs and things.
These missions are so important and, and sort of one. That they're not, they don't operate them as national facilities and only people from that country. And I can use it. So the way these sort of telescopes run is that once they're up and going, astronomers apply for their little slice of time to use the telescope.
And it's always over subscribed, always have you had three or four times as many applications as they can handle? So a special committee sits through all the applications and decides which ones get the nod and, um, Yeah, take it from anywhere around the world. It's not as many way around the world, but I said they can, um, can use it.
There's usually a little bit in the initial stages, usually a little bit of time set aside for the, you know, hardworking scientists who have been working on this telescope for 20 years or so. They're the ones who say fuss all the engineers and technicians in England. People don't realize that they got things going out there.
It's working now. That's great. Next it doesn't work like that. The people who built the thing and developed it and designed it and were commissioned to build it. This is a career. This is their entire career. And again, but yeah, it could be the last work. So generally there's a period of crisis where, um, the bus people get first crack at it and that can be their observations first.
As a bit of a award, if you'd like, and they get to, um, uh, you know, sift through the data first and publish their scientific papers. And then all that data becomes freely available to anybody after a certain period, which is usually about six months or 12 months or something. But, um, you off that initial period, anyone can, um, we'll be able to apply at the time.
And, um, on, based on merit, their, uh, applications might be. Anyway, it's got a decades long lifetime, so that'd be, should be plenty of climates. That's Jonathan, Nalli the editor of Australian sky and telescope magazine. And don't forget if you're having trouble getting your copy of Australian sky and telescope magazine from your usual retailer because of the current lockdown and travel restrictions can always get a print or digital subscription and have the magazine delivered directly to your letterbox or inbox.
Subscribing is easy. Just go to sky and telescope.com today. That's sky telescope.com.edu, and you'll never be left in the dark again. And this space time stole the calm, the earliest known report of the phenomenon known as ball lining in England and space X Sarah's 24 dragon cargo ship successfully returns to earth splashing down at the Gulf of Mexico or that a more Stuart.
researchers have discovered with a piece to be the earliest known English record of a still controversial and extremely rare weather phenomenon known as bull light. Ball lightning, which is usually associated with thunderstorms is unexplained and has been described as a bright spherical object on average, around 25 centimeters across, but sometimes up to several meters in diameter emeritus, professor physicists, Brian Tena and historian professor Jos Gasper, both from Durham university discovered a reference to an alleged bull lightening event while exploring a medieval text written some 750 years.
The account by the 12th century Benedictine monk of Christ church, cathedral, priory, and Canterbury predates the previous earliest known description of ball lightning recorded in England by nearly 450 years. The findings have been published in the row. Meat Radhika society's journal weather in his Chronicle composed around the year 1200.
Jervais says that a marvelous sign descended near London on the 7th of June, 1195. He goes on to describe a dense and dark cloud emitting, a white substance, which grew into a spherical shape under the cloud. And from which a fiery globe fell towards the river, the Durham researchers then compare the texted Chronicle with historical and modern reports of bowl light.
Tennis says Javez description of a white substance coming out of a dark cloud falling as a spinning fire is fair. And then having some horizontal motion is very similar to historic and contemporary descriptions of bow lightening. Prior to this account, the earliest report of bull lightening from England was during a great thunderstorm in Devin in October 16, 38.
The thing is medieval writings really survive in the author's original version and Chronicle and other works. Now early exists in three manuscripts, one in the British library and the other two at the university of Cambridge, the text, which is in Latin, was edited by a Bishop William stubs in 1879. And there is no translation into England.
The research has looked at your vases credibility as a writer and as a witness, having previously examined his records of eclipses, add a description of the splitting of an image of the Crescent moon. The studies co-author Gasper says that given that Jarvis appears to be a reliable reporter in Tana, believe that his description of the fiery globe of the Thames on June the seventh was the first fully convincing account of ball lightning anywhere.
As to what Bo lightening really is if it exists at all. In fact, well, the mystery there remains America's professor Robert Crumpton from the Australian national university. Who's collected dozens of eyewitness accounts of bar lightening over many decades, says two main theories have been put forward to explain the phenomenon.
One hypothesis based on the physics of electrical discharges suggest that lightning strikes and travels slowly through conductive channels in the ground generating a corresponding electric field in the air as it moves. And the ball lightning is formed from electricity discharging in this field. The other idea which is more chemical and geological involves lightning, hitting a substance containing a two to one ratio of carbon and Silicon.
The extreme heat of the lightening, then converts these chemicals in a calm side and nanoparticles of Silicon, which puff out of the surface and the shape of a ball. The ball shimmers as the Silicon oxidizes in the AI generating heat and light Crompton says the second idea was given a boost by an experiment carried out by French scientists, which recreated Silicon nanoparticles in the laboratory using electricity.
However, none of this would explain reports of ball lightning, passing through walls and entering buildings, nor does it explain a well documented case in suburban Canberra where content says a man was standing next to his garage door. When lightning strike nearby shortly afterwards, he saw an orange, yellow ball of rotating lights, slowly floating towards him.
It ended his metal garage through the open door and bounced twice on a board of ward before disappearing in a loud bang, like a rifle. Brompton says the object lift marks on the board, which were later analyzed by Australian federal police forensics. They found the marks to be titanium oxide, a heavy metal used in some types of paints, but apparently there wasn't paint splash or spill mocks, as you'd normally expect to find in a garage prompting things to the bowl.
Lightening was an ionized electrical discharge. And in this case, the lightning struck a painted pole with some of the paint being incorporated into the bowl line. Another hypothesis involves rapidly charging magnetic fields caused by thunderstorms. Apparently if these magnetic fields focused on the visual cortex of the human brain could induce Eddie's through transcranial magnetic stimulation, which would cause people to think they're seeing lights that look like discs and lines.
And as the field moves within the cortex, the subject sees the lights moved to, but this too is just a hypothesis. This is based on. Stole the calm space. X's dragon. Sarah's 24 cargo ship successfully returns to earth. And later in the science report could the popular social media app tick-tock be weeding its way indicates brains, or that are more Stuart again.
space. X's Sierra's 24 dragon cargo ship has successfully returned to worth splashing down in the Gulf of Mexico, just off the Florida coast. There are 10 had been delayed by two days due to bad weather at the splashdown zone. The spacecraft brought with it some 2.3 tons of returned experiments in space station hardware.
The mission had launched 34 days earlier from space launch complex 39 8 at the Kennedy space center in Florida. A board of Falcon nine. This is space, time
and Tom, out of take another brief, look at some of the other stories making using science this week with a science report, a new study wards that 75% of COVID-19 patients is survived after being admitted to an intensive care unit. I still experiencing physical symptoms a year later. The findings were reported in the journal of the American medical association based on followup studies with 250 Dutch COVID-19 survivors a year after their ICU stay three quarters of these patients reported ongoing physical symptoms, including fatigue and impaired fitness.
One in four reported mental symptoms, such as anxiety, and one in six reported cognitive issues. More than 5.6 million people have now being killed by the COVID-19 Corona virus, since it first spread out of wa and China. However, the world health organization believes the true death toll is likely to be double that amount with almost 360 million confirmed cases globally.
And you study as worked out why women are more likely to give birth at night. Primates, including humans tend to have their babies at night. That exactly why has always been unclear. Now, a report in the journal of biology letters claims the key could be body temperature. Scientists followed a group of wild vervet monkeys that were fitted with devices to measure their body temperature.
And they found that the monkey's body temperatures dropped when they were about to give birth. You also say that by giving birth at night, when it's cooler, it may take less energy to drop their body temperature compared to giving birth. During the heat of the day, the author say their findings off of fresh insights into the evolution of primate birth timing, and may also provide an evolutionary explanation for some of the health risks associated with human birth.
And you study ones of the popular social media app, Tik TOK, maybe waiting its way into kids' brains. Uh, report in the journal drug and alcohol review suggests that cannabis based content on Tik TOK are prevalent and may influence the perceptions of its use is that he's author search through the social media platform for hashtags based around cannabis use, and say that over half the videos they found betrayed the drug in a positive light, and none of them were age restricted.
As more than a third of the platforms, users around the 14 years of age and previous researchers demonstrated that exposure to cannabis related content can be negatively, influential and adolescents. The research suggest it may be important for effective age restrictions and regulations to be introduced to social media sites and apps.
Earliest studies show that tick-tock can spy on and copy other files on devices it's downloaded into. And so can be used to collect information on your children. There's a new warning out about the dangers of circled anti 5g, radiation jewelry. A study shows that rather than provide protection, these items are actually emitting harmful ionizing radiation, the warnings by the Dutch authority for nuclear safety and radiation protection.
How was energy armor, sleeping masks, bracelets, and necklaces, a bracelet for young kids. Branded magnet texts. Wilderness was also found to admit radiation. 5g networks have been subjected to numerous conspiracy theories, including claims they're responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. But the world health organization says 5g mobile networks use non-ionizing radio waves that don't damage DNA and the fundamentally no different to existing 3g and 4g signal.
Tim Mendham from Australian skeptic says so-called Addy 5g devices don't work. And in this case are actually harmful. It keeps counting the travel east. These things keep popping up a lot, little products like medallions bracelets, necklaces masks, in this particular case, all sorts of things which are designed to protect you against radiation.
And in this case, 5g radiation in previous incarnations it's speed microwave, radiation. Otherwise it's been in UV radiation. And it's almost the same product, which is just re stamp for a new market. And obviously is looking at the market at the moment, equally unfounded as some of the others, they miss a month.
The trouble is the irony. This is that these products actually release radiation, ionizing, radiation, too, which is the dangerous sort of radiation as opposed to non-ionizing radiation, which is what the telephone. Uh, based around. So even by protecting yourself against 5g, you're actually making things worse for yourself.
And the fact that got a baby version or children's version Kobe got magnetics wellness thing, which is also radioactive you feel sort of a great problem. But the curious thing about these things is that always products are out there protecting you against radiation, have no way of actually doing it.
Little stickers. You can put on yourself as if a stick is going to protect you translate. So things around your arms will something like that point. Jewelry medallions and things aspires spice to protect you against radiation. No indication of how well we going to have a small optics. It's going to protect your whole body from radiation.
So it's science, it's dangerous science. It's the science actually dangerous products that you have to pay a lot of money for. So on every count, these things are, should be disappeared from the. Marketplace. In fact, some of this racist that was being done in Holland, the authorities, they have told all the resellers that it's prohibited, it's taken off the shelves or the online shelves immediately.
And you must go until your customers, that the product you just sold them is actually harmful. So they take it very seriously. So it's interesting to see how it works out, but the product itself just keeps popping up again and again, very similar medallions and necklaces and bracelets and this sort of stuff.
They're just targeting a different particular. The strength of the day, the threat is you, uh, which is 5g at the moment. There'll be something else in a couple of years time. So what is it? The sexually radioactive? Is it the paint is, there is actually some minerals. You may that's to Mendham from Australian skeptics.
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Editor Australian Sky & Telescope Magazine
Our editor, Jonathan Nally, is well known to members of both the amateur and professional astronomical communities. In 1987 he founded Australia’s first astronomy magazine, Sky & Space, and in 2005 became the launch editor for Australian Sky & Telescope. He has written for other major science magazines and technology magazines, and has authored, contributed to or edited many astronomy, nature, history and technology books. In 2000 the Astronomical Society of Australia awarded him the inaugural David Allen Prize for Excellence in the promotion of Astronomy to the public.