back to article NASA to blast 5 rockets in 5 min in jet stream test

NASA is planning to light up the night sky in the next month, sending five rockets at the same time to the edge of space to find out more about the jet stream winds that circle the planet. The space agency is waiting for a clear night between 14 March and 4 April to blast off the five sounding rockets, known as the Anomalous …


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  1. AdamT

    300 mph?

    This is SCIENCE!

    (glad to see NASA still has enough cash to quietly get on with a few things at least)

  2. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    Watch out for the...

    ...."chemtrail" nutters, and expect lots of UFO sighting reports.

    1. Audrey S. Thackeray

      Re: Watch out for the...

      I'll go for a stealing water by high altitude cloud seeding conspiracy being the most popular - bet you we have a drought this year and Evian's profits go up.

  3. Dave Rickmers
    Black Helicopters

    [persistent contrails] in Space?

    Will H.A.A.R.P. be notified?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    They will discover

    That is is down to the rotation of the Earth and the atmosphere at that altitude being quite thin.

    On another note, maybe LOHAN should be offered to NASA as part of the experiment, only £5million in funding and they can reap the benefits of first hand comments from the playmonaut.

  5. Rustident Spaceniak

    Not really puppies...

    You seem to be thinking of the lower jet streams, which were discovered something like 70 years ago, and are fairly well understood. Here we are looking at winds at an altitude of about 60 miles - close to what most of us consider space, in very thin atmosphere. They're a lot less well-understood; yes, the Earth rotation plays a role, but so, apparently, do high-altitude electric currents, possible in this thin atmosphere because it is partly ionized.

    To the pragmatist, it's really not quite clear what NASA is trying to find out, of course: These winds don't really harm anybody, or have much practical relevance for that matter. But we'll see. The same was thought of many things.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not really puppies...

      No, I was thinking of the right ones. I just think that they will discover it is mainly rotation. Just my own little opinion.

      It is an odd one, I guess they have a few spare rockets knocking about and they felt they should launch something!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I wish you had told them this before...

        ..Silly rabbits, they would probably have been glad to save the money.

        1. Anonymous Coward

          Re: I wish you had told them this before...

          They didn't ask...

  6. Graham Bartlett

    But why

    have they named it after a brand of margarine?

  7. Sporkinum

    Blow me to Bermuda!

    Merlin: Blow me to Bermuda!

    [Merlin suddenly blasts off like a rocket]

    Arthur: Where... Where did he go?

    Archimedes the Owl: To Bermuda, I suppose.

    Arthur: Where's that?

    Archimedes the Owl: Oh, an island way off somewhere that hasn't been discovered yet.

    Arthur: Will he ever come back?

    Archimedes the Owl: Who knows? Who knows anything?

  8. Faux Science Slayer

    The atmosphere is under constant erosion. It is stirred from below by Earth's rotation and blown away at the top by solar wind. Solar radiation ionizes all atmospheric molecules, Nitrogen14 becomes Carbon14 being the most familiar. In the last 60 million years Earth has lost half of its atmosphere by these two process, witness the wingspan of Pterodctyal to today's condor. The Moons polar ice caps are accretions of the leeward transit thru this solar blown former Earth air. All Paleo-climatology is thus incorrect extrapolation of today's conditions to a past that never existed.

  9. laird cummings

    Screw all rational thought

    I just wanna see the show. And for once, I'm well-placed!

    Time to git me beer & beach chair. Maybe add some powerful binoculars to the kit.

  10. Miek

    Could they not save money by launching some Weather Balloons, I hear they are made for that kind of thing.

    1. Geoff May

      I may be wrong but ...

      I believe the record for a balloon is around 32 to 33 miles where as these winds are at 60 miles.

  11. Muckminded

    And if they happen to fall on Iran...

    that will still make for an interesting experiment, even if it's one already tried.

  12. Scorchio!!


    Nobody noticed that NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center cannot spell 'cumulus'. I'll file it next to 'nucilah'.

  13. David Pollard


    It will be fascinating to know to what extent magnetohydrodynamic processes are involved. For example, is the apparent lack of turbulence seen when shuttle exhaust is observed due to eddy current damping by the Earth's magnetic field? And does the pinch effect play a part in keeping the jet streams concentrated?

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