Saturday, January 12, 2008

Smokey Sunset


It's been pretty cloudy and miserable around here for the past week, since I got the new camera not much time to use it, feel like I'm all dressed up and no where to go. The last time I was able to get out and use it was over a week ago during the Quadrantids meteor shower, so when we got a break in the clouds, got the chance to get out and get me another sunset. There was some kind of what smelt like burning forest fire smoke in the atmosphere, gave the Sun a real cool look, awesome colors.


Shuttle Atlantis (STS 122) has a new target launch date, February 7th., this should give NASA plenty of time to install and test the new connection which replaces the faulty one that caused false readings in the engine cutoff system. Atlantis's main mission is to install and activate the European Space Agencies Columbus Laboratory. Shuttle Endeavour (STS 123) scheduled to launch on February 14th. will be pushed back to the middle of March. One of Endeavour's main missions is to deliver and install Dextre a robotic arm addition. Dextre is a sophisticated dual arm robot for very precise work.


Endeavour will also be delivering the first part of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Kibo, an experimental module/laboratory focusing on space medicine and biotechnology.


I'll leave you now with an animated GIF of my latest sunset.


36 comments:

Swubird said...

Bob:

That Dextre robotic arm addition is really something. The Japanese have definitely developed some advanced robotic gadgets. They make some very cool consumer toys that we don't see over here on this side of the ocean.

Nice GIF.

Nature Nut /JJ Loch said...

Great sunset photo with the pink coloring!!! Does the sun look like it's teasing us with a bowl of ice cream?

How many laboratories are up in space? I love how you keep us up to date on all the space activities.

Have a super Sunday. :D

Hugs, JJ

Bob Johnson said...

Hey swubird thanks! The Japanese do have some of the coolest gadgets for sure, but I think we Canadians have come a long way with the robotic arm and now the Dextre attachement.

Bob Johnson said...

Hi JJ, lol about the icecream, the whole space station is a lab, but when it's all said and done there will be 6 labs.

gt281 said...

Yes i've been swinging by,, viewing the view as it were...
Nice GIFs..what program?...
Heres another cosmic Q for you...Since the external tank of the space shuttle keeps having foam
drop off during lift-off,, why doesn't NASA put a giant hair net
over the thing?....
Klaatu barada nikto....

Bob Johnson said...

Hey gt281, the program for the GIF cn be found at

http://www.blibs.com/editor/

Just follow the basic instructions and you'll be doing animated gifs before you know it.
Good question about the net!! NASA has thought about either an external or internal type of mesh or hairnet for the tank, but calculate it would take years to develope and test such a thing.

gt281 said...

What a lame answer from NASA…How long was the shuttle program shut down because of Challenger?...
How much does a shuttle cost?,, not to mention losing some of our finest…I’ll bet the makers of Hefty trash bags could have one developed within two weeks…
They just need the size,, which I guess would be xtra,, xtra,, xtra,, xtra,, xtra,, xtra,, xtra,, large….

Bob Johnson said...

I hear ya, I've posted on this kind of safety stuff before with the shuttle program, NASA has done some studies on this, they are saying tht the netting or covering could break apart and may cause more damage than the foam.

Livingsword said...

Hi Bob;

What a shot! It almost doesn’t look real! A very nice image captured by a good artist of the Ultimate Artist’s art….

Dexter is Canadian!!! Yes!!! (Score a point for the silly cold people north of the 49th LOL) It seems like a wonderfully dexterous device…

The Kibo sounds like a very impressive module, but of course not as glamorous as Dexter (I wonder how Dexter would do during a shootout after overtime….)

Another cool GIF! It would be interesting to see the effect on the top part! LOL

Mr. Grudge said...

Hi Bob,
You're photography is beautiful. Your website is where I now come for regular updates on what's going on in outer space. I had no idea Japan had a space agency of their own; yet, that is not surpirising given their highly advanced technology, which often surpasses our own.

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks livingsword! It is too cool that Dextre is Canadian, we have a lot of talent up here, hello?! Dextre would win in any shootout, has arms, lol.

Bob Johnson said...

Hi Mike, thanks very much, the Japanese also have an impressive Lunar program with their Kaguya orbiter, web site can be found at

http://www.selene.jaxa.jp/index_e.htm

Roger said...

Bob thanks for the great info on the equipment going up with Endeavor and actions to follow! Also thats some very cool GIF's your making, awesome stuff!! Hope your having a good weekend!

Bob Johnson said...

Hey Roger and thanks, hope you have a good weekend too!

The Uneasy Supplicant said...

Excellent shot Bob. Beautiful sunset. Must be nice to have those wonderful sunsets. It has to be all that flat land in the prairies eh? Too many hills around here. Sorry to here you haven't had much success with the weather. Every time I see them talking about the weather in Saskatchewan I think of you and your camera :-)

Bob Johnson said...

Hi JD, thanks eh, only seen 2 sunsets since I got the camera, both been real great, especially this last one, looked like icecream, that is exactly what I saw, it was awesome.

Anna said...

Hi Bob, I just lost a full story I wrote you, its all this stupid Antivirus taking so much of my resourcs. Anyway, I know what you mean about the gloomy weather. I have my camera sitting on the kitchen island and pointing at the backyard for visitors, hardly used recently. Even birds don't show up in my birdfeeder, very rarely - they all hiding at the local supermarket, lol. So is this Canada arm? Looks very complicated, so many links and joints, and probably has high accuracy, yet to work in such a harsh environment - such designs always fascinated me. It will be cool to know what projects are for the Japan Aerospace, especially knowing it is in the area of medicine and biotechnology, hope its nothing funky like what is illegal here on Earth. Great post again Bob, and thanks for sharing, there is always more room for knowledge in my head, lol. Anna :)

Bob Johnson said...

Hi Anna, I hate when that happens and it happens a lot to me with sucky VISTA, for some reason my internet will just stop working, happens on average every hour. Dextre is cool, they are saying they will be able to use it instead of an astronaut to do some of the more dangerous spacewalks.

Will said...

Is there really a fire burning there this time of year? We get forest fires in the summer, but by now the rain has put them all out.

I heard a brief thing on the radio this morning saying today NASA has a satellite flying within 120 miles of Mercury? That seems incredible. Why would the heat from the sun not destroy a man made probe to Mercury? Is it not as hot there as popular lore would have it?

Tatiana said...

Thank you for keeping us updated about Nasa and the new dates Bob.
Loved the sunset photo of yours, and loved also how you made it animated at the end of your post :)
And I am so sorry that where you live is clouded and no shots are possible right now, and have been having the same problems here all along...But when having your blog to keep us updated all is well :)
Congrats with your new camera too!
Tatiana

Bob Johnson said...

Hey Will, I checked the paper about fires was nothing, we figure it was the city burning something, the whole east side was smokey as you can see in the pic, real cool Sun colors almost like icecream, too cool. Messenger spacecraft will be 124 miles from the surface of Mercury today, the actual info comes through 22 hours after, I will be posting about its mission and the crazy planet flybys it has to do to obtain orbit around Mercury March 18 2011. It has a "Sunshade" to protect it from the heat, it allows the electronic components to operate at room temp, very cool, literally,lol.

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Tatiana!, I was quite lucky to get those wild colors, the break in the clouds only lasted a few hours,expecting more snow tomorrow,:(

The Fool said...

Hopefully the launch will be a go on the seventh. We all know that it has been pushed back far enough and the shuttle needs to get up to the ISS already. The work it is doing will hopefully provide some interesting results. Thanks for the info and nice sunset pic!

The Fool

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks the fool, should be good to go on the 7th, but who knows, something else could get in the way.

Will said...

Room temperature, Cool! I wonder how long it took the craft to get there? Also wonder if a person could survive the trip? It may be a one way trip though?

-Will

Bob Johnson said...

Hi Will, Messenger left Earth Aug, 2004, won't actually orbit till 2011, crazy. Your right about it being a one way trip, ain't coming home.

Lynda Lehmann said...

I'm glad you finally got out to use your camera, Bob!

Is it possible to make really large GIFs, or is that an oxymoron? I think these would look really cool in a large size!

Bob Johnson said...

Hi and thanks Lynda, I really don't know if you can make them bigger, every host site is a different size, it would look cool larger.

Max said...

Hey Bob,

I am so sorry to hear that the weather is ruining your photo sessions :(.

The GIF is beautiful!!

Cheers

Oswegan said...

Nice view.

~Oswegan

Swubird said...

Great sunset GIF. Whatever that smokey smell was it sure added to a nice sunset scene.

Have a super day.

Nature Nut /JJ Loch said...

Bob!

Had to stop by to tell you my daughter is sewing an astronomy quilt so she and her hubby has something to cover up with on their astronomy outings. :D

I think I saw antimatter in the news. Can you post about that?

Hugs JJ

Nature Nut /JJ Loch said...

...so she and her hubby "have". Give me a swat.

Hugs, JJ

Bob Johnson said...

Hey oswegan thanks!

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks swubird! I still don't know what it was.

Bob Johnson said...

JJ lol. have or has, both sound good to me! JJ are you talking about the thinking they found the source of some antimatter ,about antimatter being the result of stars being pulled apart by neutron stars and blackholes?