Thursday, July 05, 2007

Carnival Of The Space Geeks (To The Tenth Power) Authentic NASA Toys and Replicas

Editor's note: The tenth Carnival of Space is up over at Why Homeschool and has thus far been the best roundup of what is happening in the space arena (at least as far as blogs are concerned).

Some interesting posts include:

  • Paul Gilster of Centauri Dreams discusses a new theoretical propulsion system that may enable humanity to travel to the gas giants fairly quickly (and beyond).

  • Brian Wang of Advanced Nanotechnology breaks down space solar power to the megawatt level, as well as discusses why finding ways to increase "light power" would benefit Bigelow and NASA space stations.

  • James of Surfin' English elaborates on all the fun forms of radiation that can kill us, not to mention why computers enjoy it less than we do.

  • Stuart Atkinson who posts at The Verse poetically portrays the thoughts of a Martian rover forced to commit suicide by exploring a deep crater.

  • Bigelow Aerospace has some interesting images from their successfully launched Genesis II space station (which I have yet to write a future post on).

But the best post in this carnival goes to Louise Riofrio of A Babe In The Universe whose recent spacesuit design may enable humans to gracefully walk upon Martian and lunar soils.

(A Babe In The Universe) The skintight inner garment is a sandwich of stretchable materiels that zip on like a flightsuit. It is suitable for suborbital and Low Earth Orbit Access, like the "pumpkin suits" used today. Upon exposure to vacuum, the proprietary materiel automatically tightens to compensate. Unlike present-day soft suits, there is no loss of flexibility. The prototype is covered in silver rubber for visibility. [...]

For EVA and planetary exploration, the suit can be armoured. The outer pieces on the chest and arms are made of composite materiels that are stronger than steel. The manufacturer guarantees the materiel to 250 degrees fahrenheit, or the highest likely to be encountered in Space. As on present spacecraft, multiple aluminised layers insulate the wearer from extreme cold. The outer armour can be quickly changed to adapt for different environments. When lunar explorers are ready to return home, the outer layers and all that yucky lunar regolith can be left behind on the Moon.

The most interesting thing about this prototype is the fact that the suit can be customized to fit different needs. For example, a colonist on Mars may require a suit that deals with the potentially toxic soil via winds while on the Moon one may need to design a static free dust to keep lunar soil at bay.

Brian Dunbar over at Space For Commerce is hosting next week's Space Carnival, and for those of you desiring to enter the carnival see this post for details.

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You can either visit the stars or watch them from afar.

But if you choose the former, you'll definitely get a better view.

~Darnell Clayton, 2007

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