desert

Showing 9 posts tagged desert

If you’ve ever pretended to be on the Red Planet, you’re not alone. This is Crew 138 of the Mars Society’s Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS), a team of scientists who are researching what it would be like to live on Mars by pretending. From Wikipedia:

The crews usually consist of a mix of astronomers, physicists, biologists, geologists, engineers and the occasional journalist. Each crew member is usually assigned a role: Commander, Executive Officer (ExO), Health and Safety Officer (HSO), Crew Biologist, Crew Geologist or Chief Engineer.

In addition to cooking, cleaning, exercise, HAB maintenance, GreenHab gardening, etc, the crew has mission objectives to complete. A final mission report is written from their notes, analysis, and experiences so that future Mars astronauts and explorers can be well prepared. From National Geographic:

On the mission, the international team is working on in-the-field mapping, collecting and analyzing rock samples, measuring the payoff from exercise, and taking blood samples to monitor crew health. The team is working in mock space suits and testing work protocols indoors and outside.

The first days were largely spent learning to live and work in the Habitat, which is a round two-story structure that measures about 25 feet across.

After the crew enters full simulation, the Habitat contains all the food and water we need, as well as work and sleep quarters.

This team was based in the Utah desert, but there have been other “extraterrestrial” sites: Haughton Crater on Devon Island, and next to the Krafla Rift Volcano in Iceland. There’s also one in the works 324 miles (521 km) north of Adelaide, South Australia. For more information about the project, including volunteer requirements, check out desert.marssociety.org, and read more at National Geographic.

Watch more Mars videos, including a topographically accurate landscapes of Mars and everything Mars Curiosity.

via Devour.

In the year 2020, seven of the largest mirrors on Earth — 20 tons each — will come together in a 22-story, rotating building located in the southern Atacama Desert of Chile. They will form the Giant Magellan Telescope, a feat of science, technology, engineering and math that will have ten times the resolution of the Hubble Space Telescope.

In this video from July 2013, Dr. Wendy Freedman, Chairman GMT, and Dr. Pat McCarthy, Director GMT, explain the astounding challenge of creating this precise, powerful, and wondrous machine. Read more at Phys.org.

In the archives: more telescope-related vids.

Well-preserved, thanks to just the right combination of conditions over 72 million years, a 16 foot (5 meter) long dinosaur tail has been unearthed by paleontologists in Coahuila, MexicoBased on evidence, the excavation team believes that the tail could have been from a duck-billed hadrosaur, and they hope to locate more of the dinosaur’s body deeper underground. From Yahoo:

A group of locals discovered the fossil in June 2012. Paleontologists with INAH and the National Autonomous University of Mexico spent about a year surveying the area, and began their excavation on July 2… 

Aside from providing a valuable addition to the world’s limited collection of intact dinosaur fossils, the team hopes their findings will help explain the mechanics of how hadrosaur tails moved…

Finding the remains of this web-footed herbivore in such good condition is rare, and will add to the information gathered from previous discoveries. Related hadrosaur reading should include Dakota, the 67 million year old "mummified" hadrosaur that was excavated in North Dakota in 2006.

Watch more paleontology videos.

h/t @pourmecoffee.

Using his paraglider, photographer George Steinmetz flies above some of the most diverse and extreme deserts in the world… sand dunes, volcanic peaks, brightly colored hot springs, ancient cities, unusual farms, herds of wild animals… pattern upon amazing pattern. Look at them all online or find them in his book, Desert Air, after watching this video from National Geographic.

The U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds operated the F-100C from 1956 until 1964. After briefly converting to the F-105 Thunderchief, the team flew F-100Ds from July 1964 until November 1968.

In this film from 1959 we see the Thunderbirds flying in formation, low level passes, in cockpit views and much more. The original source footage had no audio so I have added a generic jet engine sound for some background ambiance.

From the wdtvlive42 archives.