Electromagnetic Railguns - The U.S Military's future Superguns

Electromagnetic Railguns – The U.S Military’s future Superguns – 200 mile range Mach 7 projectiles

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‘Velocitas Eradico’– sounds like the sort of thing Harry Potter would say when fighting Voldemort, which would be quite apt as the translation of ‘Velocitas Eradico’ is “quickly get rid” or in the vernacular ‘Speed Kills’ and is the motto for the no less futuristic US Navy Electromagnetic Railgun project. Before we set the comments on fire about the Latin, it seems that ‘Velocitas Eradicat’ would be a better translation of ‘Speed Kills’, I’ll leave it to you Latin scholars out there the let me know in the comments. Now, back to the railgun, some might be saying why do …

Evel Knievel and The Reusable X-3 Volksrocket

Evel Knievel and The Reusable X-3 Volksrocket

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In the last year or so, its become almost commonplace to see SpaceX & Blue origin bringing rockets back after a launch for refurbishment and reuse. This has been the goal for billionaires Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos backed with NASA knowledge for well over a decade now. But over 40 years ago another man had the same dream of a low-cost reusable rocket that very nearly came to fruition from the unlikely source of a two-car garage in an ordinary Californian suburb and could have made the world famous daredevil Evel Knievel the worlds first private astronaut. That man …

How Did NASA Lose a Mars Space Probe Because of Maths?

How Did NASA Lose a Mars Space Probe Because of Maths?

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For all the knowledge of the thousands of scientists and engineers in the space industry, sometimes the old adage “The best-laid plans of mice and men” can equally be applied to their efforts. This was certainly the case on the Mars Climate Orbiter mission of 1999 and this would go down in space history as one of the biggest facepalms to date. If you’re an avid comment reader, you may have seen comments on my videos about why I tend to use both Imperial and metric units, instead of just metric and the simple answer is that many people in …

Black Arrow : The Lipstick Rocket - A Very British Space Program

Black Arrow : The Lipstick Rocket – A Very British Space Program

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Although it may seem as though it was just a two horse race between the USA and USSR. From the mid-1960s, a small club of nations one by one gained the ability to independently launch satellites using their own rockets and in chronological order, they were the Soviet Union, United States, France, Japan, China and the United Kingdom. Whilst the Americans & Soviets threw billions of dollars & Rubels and the power of the state at the problem of space, the British after the second world war, were almost bankrupt and shadows of their former industrial might but they still …

Sputnik - 60 years on from the Start of the Space Race

Sputnik – 60 years on from the Start of the Space Race

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That simple little beep, beep, beep was the sound that started the Space Race. It was heard for the first time 60 years ago, when, on October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik 1 into a low Earth orbit. It was only a metal ball, 22 inches or about 56 centimetres in diameter, with four antennae sticking out of it – but it had an impact far greater than its size. In fact, it changed the course of human history. The idea of a satellite was first raised in an engineering memo written by Mikhail Tikhonravov in 1954 whilst …