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Latest Solar sail Stories

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2005-09-27 16:07:42

NASA -- NASA engineers and their industry partners have successfully deployed two 400-square-meter solar sails during ground testing. This is a critical milestone in the development of a unique propulsion technology that uses the Sun to propel vehicles through space. Solar sail propulsion technologies bounce sunlight off giant, reflective sails made of lightweight material 40 to 100 times thinner than a piece of writing paper. The continuous pressure provides sufficient thrust to perform...

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2005-06-23 21:53:29

PASADENA, Calif. (AP) -- Officials in charge of the Russian rocket that failed during launch of the Cosmos 1 solar sail spacecraft believe that the booster's stages never separated, the project director said in a statement. The officials believe the rocket went down near Novaya Zemlya, an archipelago that separates the Barents Sea from the Kara Sea, Louis D. Friedman said in a statement from Moscow posted on the Web site of The Planetary Society, the Pasadena-based organization behind the $4...

7e5bd02cb3a88b93b4e3701be5e3a15a1
2005-06-21 15:05:00

LOS ANGELES -- The world's first spacecraft designed to be propelled by the pressure of sunlight was launched toward orbit Tuesday from a Russian submarine under the Barents Sea. Cosmos 1, a $4 million experiment intended to show that a so-called solar sail can make a controlled flight, lifted off at about 12:46 p.m. PDT as project organizers from The Planetary Society and Cosmos Studios monitored the launch from California. Confirmation of a successful launch was likely to take several...

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2005-06-16 11:30:00

Drilling holes on other planets and inventing novel textiles to secure large structures in space are just two of the 27 challenges that expert teams have been working on in the first year of ESA's Innovation Triangle Initiative. "By combining the creativity of the inventor, the needs of end users and the production experience of industry we have created strong drive and a very successful synergy to identify, demonstrate and verify novel ideas for future space technologies," says Marco...

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2005-06-16 06:35:00

ESA -- Drilling holes on other planets and inventing novel textiles to secure large structures in space are just two of the 27 challenges that expert teams have been working on in the first year of ESA's Innovation Triangle Initiative. "By combining the creativity of the inventor, the needs of end users and the production experience of industry we have created strong drive and a very successful synergy to identify, demonstrate and verify novel ideas for future space technologies," says...

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2005-05-23 15:30:00

NASA -- Solar sails. The idea of using these large, reflective structures to "sail" through space is nothing new. In fact, it's been around for a long time -- first suggested nearly 400 years ago by the German astronomer Johannes Kepler, after he "discovered" comet tails being blown by what he believed to be a kind of solar breeze. Kepler suggested ships could possibly move through space using large sails to capture this "breeze" from the Sun, much the way the wind pushes sailboats across...

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2005-04-07 07:14:56

NASA -- NASA engineers and their industry partners are preparing to test two 20-meter (66-feet) long solar sail propulsion system designs -- a critical milestone in development of a unique propulsion technology using the Sun's energy that could lead to future deep space missions. The systems tests, scheduled for April through July, will be conducted at the NASA Glenn Research Center's Plum Brook Station in Sandusky, Ohio. Drawing energy from the Sun, much the way the wind pushes sailboats...

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2005-03-29 13:45:13

NASA Astronaut Journal, Mars, 2034: The latest spacecraft sent to us is more a living thing than a robot. Shortly after launch from Earth, the tiny capsule blossomed into a sail and rode the solar wind to Mars. On the way, a meteoroid punched a hole in the sail, but surrounding material flowed in and closed the tear. Upon arrival, the spacecraft shrunk more than 100 times its volume to return to the safety of its capsule. After the capsule took the heat from entry into the Martian...


Word of the Day
sough
  • A murmuring sound; a rushing or whistling sound, like that of the wind; a deep sigh.
  • A gentle breeze; a waft; a breath.
  • Any rumor that engages general attention.
  • A cant or whining mode of speaking, especially in preaching or praying; the chant or recitative characteristic of the old Presbyterians in Scotland.
  • To make a rushing, whistling, or sighing sound; emit a hollow murmur; murmur or sigh like the wind.
  • To breathe in or as in sleep.
  • To utter in a whining or monotonous tone.
According to the OED, from the 16th century, this word is 'almost exclusively Scots and northern dialect until adopted in general literary use in the 19th.'
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