The RadioAstron Space Observatory became the first new space astrophysical object created by Russian specialists in many years. RadioAstron studies the nuclei of galaxies, supermassive black holes, magnetic fields, and cosmic rays. This RIA-Novosti Infographic gives more details about this project.
12 February 2014
American cosmonauts can’t get into space except on Russian spacecraft… full stop. NASA can’t get cosmonauts into space on its own as the Republican Party blew money that should’ve gone on space research for aggressive wars abroad and massive tax reduction giveaways to the Affluent Effluent. Ergo, NASA’s statement is an utter crock o’ shit with no teeth to it at all. Russia can support a robust space programme… the USA can’t because it’s wasting the money on useless wars in foreign parts and coddling the McMansion set (which pleases Grover Norquist just fine). Reflect on that when you vote this November.
The Hare on the Moon
Any Russian would immediately understand this cartoon and “laugh out loud” (to us, it’s a real LOL). The Wolf is one of the two protagonists in the famous multifilm series Ну, погоди! (Nu, Pogodi!: Well, Just You Wait!). The Wolf could never catch the Hare, his nemesis… just like the Coyote with the Roadrunner, no? By the way, the cartoonists modelled the Wolf after the famous Soviet actor Vladimir Vysotsky… another point that Russians would immediately catch. Vysotsky was a “bad boy”, who died young, but who was THE iconic figure of his generation… many Russian actors and pop musicians still draw inspiration from him today.
The Chinese lunar rover Yutu (Jade Hare) undocked from its lander after effecting a successful soft landing as part of the Chang’e 3 mission to the Moon, and deployed itself on the lunar surface. Sergei Yolkin has some fun with that.
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On 19 December, a Russian Soyuz-ST-B with a Fregat-MT stage launched the European Space Agency (ESA) unmanned space observatory Gaia from the Centre Spatial Guyanais Kourou (CSG Kourou) spaceport in French Guiana. Gaia shall carry out high-precision measurement of coördinates and stellar movement in our galaxy, tracking over a billion astronomical objects, to create a new fundamental star catalogue and a three-dimensional map of our stellar system. Gaia will also investigate the hypothesis that the Milky Way was the result of the confluence of many smaller galaxies. The onboard apparatus installed has unprecedented camera sensor resolution; it can detect a lock of hair 700 kilometres (435 miles) away. The telescope, which consists of 106 CCDs, creates an image of about 1 billion pixels. The observatory will orbit in one of the five L2 Lagrange points (points of gravitational equilibrium) between the Sun and the Earth, some 1.5 million kilometres (932,000 miles) from Earth. ESA expects the mission to last five years.
19 December 2013