* Posts by Hopalong

66 posts • joined 13 May 2012


So it is possible for Jeff Bezos to lose: Court dismisses Blue Origin complaint about Moon contract award to Elon Musk


Re: What comes next?

I am sure the ULA would love to see some flight ready BE4 engines, only 4 years late.

Oh! A surprise tour of the data centre! You shouldn't have. No, you really shouldn't have


Once had to sit in the car outside a distillery in Scotland while on holiday explaining to a senior software engineer for a German provider of Mainframe Laser Printers that yes, JES2 got restarted when you IPL the mainframe.

This was in the 90’s and I had the misfortune to be in the only place there was a Vodafone signal in miles – ‘not’ helped that the phone was in it’s car cradle so using the cars antenna to pull in the weak signal.

I did catch up with the family before they went on the tour, after taking the phone off the cradle and switching it off.

The James Webb Space Telescope, a project dating back to the late 1900s, may launch this very century


Re: Well

Can the Falcon launch the JWST?

The F9, no, the FH, yes.

JWST is 6500Kg at launch and requires a C3 (characteristic energy) of -0.7Km2/s2 to get to L2.

The F9 recovering to the droneship can do 3400Kg, the FH can do 6820Kg recovering all three boosters.

So the FH can launch the JWST and recover all three boosters, but with a small margin for any under performance (e.g. loose a Merlin on the way up). I suspect if bidding today it would be an FH and expend the centre booster to give the extra margin which NASA love.

My understanding is the A5 launcher is the ESA's buy in to the project to get access to the JWST.

Traffic lights, who needs 'em? Lucky Kentucky residents up in arms over first roundabout


Re: Bunch of wusses

Yes, a lot of coffee rings where left on the MK master street plan.

A side fact, the V & H street numbers where for planning only, but they where put on the street signs by mistake, but people found them so useful that they stayed.

Who knew that hosing a table with copious amounts of cubic metres would trip adult filters?


Re: Inside joke?

Ahh... ARS, I was always hoping that they would bring out an extended version and they would add an 'E' to the end.

I always called the little yellow finger icon to created a record an 'Marigold' for some reason.

Clarke's Third Law: Any sufficiently advanced techie is indistinguishable from magic


Re: There is no problem

That's what my walking stick is for.

'I'm telling you, I haven't got an iPad!' – Sent from my iPad



I was thinking more of "Ring local carpet emporium for any end-of-roll bargains to replace what just been used. "

SpaceX is about to launch its first Starlink internet satellite sporting a sun visor following complaints by astronomers


Re: Vantablack

They tried a darkened satellite last year. I understand that although it reduced the brightness it caused a lot of thermal problems.

Keeping a satellite cool is not easy where all you have is radiation to get rid of heat, so having a large non-reflective surface facing a nice big heat source, e.g. the Earth, does not help with your thermal management.

Turns out Elon can't control the weather – what a scrub: Rain, clouds delay historic manned SpaceX-NASA launch


No 'GO fever'

I am sorry it did not launch last night, been waiting a long time.

But I am pleased that the presence of so many big wigs did not cloud their decision making.

The weather for the weekend does not look much better, maybe they should look to a morning launch before the summer thunderstorms have a chance to build up, but the timing is dependent of where the ISS is and if you launch when the ISS is not in the right place in relation to the launch site, Dragon will need to burn a lot of fuel making the required orbital changes to meet up with the ISS.

But they had a full wet dress rehearsal, which improves the confidence in the vehicle and procedures.

Dickens' forgotten spaceship classic: A Tale of Three Missions


RD-180 - Russian Built

The RD-180 is actually built in Russia. The ULA has a license to build them in the US, but the bean counters must have decided it was better to leave the production of a critical bit of defence infrastructure in Russia.

I wonder if ULA are getting a bit nervous in case Vulcan is not ready before they run out of RD-180's for Altas V.

Tribunal halts all Information Commissioner's Office cases because UK data watchdog can't print or organise PDFs


Maybe the creation and use of PDF's has not been covered in the magazine What Quill Pen yet.

Fed-up air safety bods ban A350 pilots from enjoying cockpit coffees


Predicted 56 years ago


Remember seeing the film many many years ago, just one of those films which stuck in the memory.

Big Falcon explosion as SpaceX successfully demos Crew Dragon abort systems


Re: Another Test

Also, when CRS-7 failed (Over pressurization event in the 2nd stage), the Dragon survived the event and if they could have told it to pop it's 'chutes it would have landed safely. But, alas, the flight system was in the wrong mode (launch mode).


Re: Another Test

No, this was the only in-flight Abort test.

One piece of info gleamed by someone single framing through the video stream was that the Dragon must of reacted within 80ms of the lost of thrust and initiated the abort. They worked out that the time from the start of the exhaust plume starting to reduce to the time the Dragon parted company was 180ms and it takes about 100ms to pressurise the abort system tanks and activate the super draco's

NASA is Boeing to get to the bottom of that Starliner snafu... plus SpaceX preps to blow up a Falcon 9


Re: Is it me or is this seriously creepy?

Not so cramped, Starship as the same pressurised volume as an A380, in the order of 1000M^3.

Remember the 1980s? Oversized shoulder pads, Metal Mickey and... sticky keyboards?



Ahh, the IBM 1403 (n3's in my case), remember them well, I suspect due to 5 years operating them, I now have to wear a pair of hearing aids.

Not a death spiral, I'm trapped in a closed loop of customer experience


Re: This requirement for paper bills/statements...

If I remember correctly, when setting up a post redirect online, the payment card had to be registered to the old address you were redirecting from.

Behold the perils of trying to turn the family and friends support line into a sideline


Re: Obligatory XKCD

The mother of my daughters best friend asked me pop around as her printer was not working and she needed it for work.

Walked in, took one look and pressed the 'WiFi on' button.

Boeing nowhere fast: Starliner space taxi schedule slips once again to August


Re: BS

ULA is 50% owned by Boeing, the other 50% being Lockheed Martin.



NASA Spaceflight (https://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2019/04/curious-move-nasa-blame-ula-latest-starliner-delay/) takes a very dim view of Boeing trying to blame ULA for the delays.

Worth a read.

It was all Yellow: Mass email about a Coldplay CD breaks the internet


And todays date is......

Title says it all......

Spyware sneaks into 'million-ish' Asus PCs via poisoned software updates, says Kaspersky


Re: Modern times

AIX 3 or even AIX PS/2 v1.3?

Boeing big cheese repeats pledge of 737 Max software updates following fatal crashes


litigious value for each death, in the region of 2-3million dollars x 320 = 900million to 1 billion dollars

737Max production rate - 10 per week, ticket price for a max-8 $121M (not that anyone pays list price)

So the cost of litigation < weekly income .....

NASA admin: What if we switched one delayed SLS for two commercial launchers?


Delta IV via FH

Well, the Delta IV production line is being run down, and according to ULA, it takes about 3 years from order to delivery, so unless the USAF or NRO are open to giving up on a couple of their Delta IV heavies (Can't see that happening).......

This leaves only the Falcon Heavy, even then it would take two launches to put the the Orion + service module + boost stage into orbit.

Boeing... Boeing... Gone: Canada, America finally ground 737 Max jets as they await anti-death-crash software patches


Re: "US, Canada finally ground 737 Max jets..."

Amendment to the Amendment: remove "two first class seats" and replace with "two steerage seats next to the rear toilets".

SpaceX Crew Dragon: Launched and docked. Now, about that splashdown...


Re: Ripley and a cuddly earth

He already has his volcano lair choosen - Olympus Mons

Waiter, what's this? SpaceX delivery delayed for a day by moldy food


Re: First stage landing was... damp

Elon even thinks that they will be able to re-fly it, but on SpaceX missions (Dragon 2 abort?)

Nikola Tesla's greatest challenge: He could measure electricity but not stupidity


Re: country & western singers

If it is a Tesla car, very high on the list would be Tesla share shorters, it may even go out of its way to bag one.

Goodnight Kepler! NASA scientists lay the exoplanet expert to rest as it runs out of fuel


Re: Fuel? Why no solar panels?

Solar panels for power, the reaction wheels for fine pointing (powered by the solar panels), then the hydrazine powered RCS for things like unloading the momentum built up in the reaction wheels etc.

The reaction wheels failed over time so it had to use the RCS to do the pointing, which used more hydrazine.

So after 9 1/2 years, it had used up its 11.7 Kg of hydrazine. The camera was failing as well, so it was time for Kepler to retire with a job well done.

Erm... what did you say again, dear reader?


Ghost in the Machine if memory serves me correctly. Also had a early IBM PS2 PC as an clue.

Cops called after pair enter Canadian home and give it a good clean


Re: Ah, glass milk bottles

I seem to remember they where 1/3 pint bottles (190ml approx).

London flatmate (Julian Assange) sues landlord (government of Ecuador) in human rights spat


Re: There comes a point....

Even better, arrange for a special edition of 'Hunted'. Chuck him out and have a couple of TV crews follow him has he tries to avoid the following -

UK Police

Swedish Police


And the most dangerous - a posse of cat lovers....


They might have an issue getting a 123 Meter spire in there.......

Revealed: The billionaire baron who’ll ride Elon’s thrusting erection to the Moon and back


Re: Could be a Celebrity Big Brother worth watching

What has Cislunar space done to warrant Justin Beiber?

Second-hand connected car data drama could be a GDPR minefield


Re: Almost as good as The Dartford Crossing....

Yes, it is very easy to remove a vehicle from your account.

Also, they will automatically remove a vehicle (after few months) if its car tax group changes to 'Disabled'.

It's time for TLS 1.0 and 1.1 to die (die, die)


Received an e-mail from PayPal yesterday saying that I may have to upgrade my browser or not be able to login to PayPal after the 30th June.

They are dropping support of TLS < 1.2 as of the 30th.

My browser passed the test.

SpaceX flings SES-12 satellite into orbit, but would-be lunar tourists should probably unpack


Re: Would-be lunar tourists should probably unpack

Short answer is yes.

Long Answer is yes, Dragon-2 has a dry mass of 6,400Kg, so adding fuel, etc you are looking at around 10,000Kg, a Falcon 9 can do about 3300Kg to the Moon. It needs a Falcon Heavy, expending the centre core.

BFS (The spaceship part of the BFR) is schedule to start Grasshopper type testing next year. Orbit? 2020-21 I think.

First SpaceX Falcon 9 Block 5 rocket lobs comms sat into orbit


The diameter of the Falcon 9 was dictated by the max size which could be transported on the US roads on a daily basis.

SpaceX setup in Hawthorn as there is a pool of labour skills there which he needed and he picked up some suitable buildings at a very good price (ex. Northrop). They have never been adverse to picking up a bargain, the transporter they use to move the cores about KSC and CCAFB was originally built by NASA to move the Shuttle about, they picked it up for a song and converted it, saved a million or so.

For big pork space, look up SLS.

Fixing a printer ended with a dozen fire engines in the car park


Re: IBM 4019

Had basically the same thing happen to me one night shift in the early '80s. In this case it was an 3800 (we had the fanfold paper version). There was a paper jam under the hot fuser and the cut off did not work.

It started to smoke so I quickly powered it off and switched off the power to it.

Then rang IBM for a CE.

Me, "we have a problem with our 3800 printer, serial 'what ever the serial number was'

IBM ' OK, any error codes'

Me ' No, just smoking well, I have cut the power to it'

brief pause...

IBM ' OK, CE on the way'

A couple of jobs later I working in a office building which was the headquarters for a Brewery.

We had a spat of false fire alarms, the building had a automatic alarm to the local firestation, so within about 5 minutes a couple of engines would turn up. Now if there are too many false alarms we would be charged, so the facilities manager would nip into the staff shop and grab a few trays of beer and slip them to the firemen.

The next time the alarm went off, 4 engines from two stations turned up.....

The Rocky Planet Picture Show: NASA Mars InSight ready for launch


Re: Why from Vandenberg?

This was originally scheduled to be launched in 2016, but a problem with one of the instruments caused it to miss the 2016 window. At the time it looked like the eastern range (Basically KSC and in the Atlas's case, CCAFS) would have scheduling issues so they moved it to Vandenberg. Now the eastern range is even busier so it was kept at VFB.

The mission was originally sized for a Delta II, but they have been just about retired, last one is launched in September from VFB and the Delta II pad at CCAFS had been decommissioned, so the Atlas V 401 was selected, which is a lot more powerful vehicle, so does not need the assist of being launched to the east to send InSight to Mars. InSight is about 850Kg, the 401 can launch about 2000Kg from VFB to Mars.

NASA demos little nuclear power plant to help find little green men


Re: Weight?

Weight, as in mass?

According to the 2015 paper - a 10KWe unit will mass 1544Kg.

DocuSign forged – crooks crack email system and send nasties



Well, as a user of Docusign (the agency I can currently with uses it for contract documents), I have received no warnings and four of these fake emails - which where assigned to the bin.

The embedded link sends you to a Russian website.

Spotted: Bizarre SpaceX rocket-snatching machine that looks like it belongs on Robot Wars


Re: Falcon heavy

With the heavy, the side boosters return to LZ-1 at the cape, only the central stage lands on the barge.

Watch it again: SpaceX's boomerang rocket lands on robo-sea-barge


Re: Landing Barges

Just Read the Instructions is the west coast based barge.


Re: Alien Space Bat at 54:19

Most likely venting unused LOX as a part of the procedure to safe the stage. You do not want the stage to explode due to over-pressure of oxygen as the remaining LOX boils off. Especially in a Geostationary transfer orbit.

SpaceX's Musk: We'll reuse today's Falcon 9 rocket within 2 months


He did say that they had 50MPH winds when asked why the stage came in at an angle, that is a Gale (Force 8 to 9). And it landed only a couple of metres off centre!

A very good days work by SpaceX

Top rocket exec quits after telling the truth about SpaceX price war


Re: Reality versus spin

Is it dumb to try and recover 75% of the LV for re-use? (It has been stated that the 1st stage makes up 75% of the hardware costs of a F9).

A lot of missions do not require the LV's full performance, so use the spare fuel to recover the 1st stage. SpaceX has always said that if the mission requires the LV's full performance, then they do not fit the legs and the 1st stage is expended.

SpaceX Falcon 9 grounded by 'sledgehammer' winds


Re: Why super-cooled fuel?

The Falcon 9 is already at the largest diameter they can ship by road.

They are made in California, test fired in Texas then either shipped back to California (Vandenburg) or the cape.

SpaceX Falcon 9 set for fourth launch attempt


Re: Please launch tonight!!

Delayed until Friday - wind shear @10KM exceeding the limits - better safe than sorry.

Computers abort SpaceX Falcon 9 launch


Re: Quite positive really

It has been said that in the days of the Shuttle, the range safety officers made the point of not mixing with the astronauts in case they had to terminate a shuttle flight and kill the astronauts.

The shuttle had no effective escape system. Only the first test flights did the Shuttle have ejection seats, and that was just for the two pilots.



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