Pine Gap & Waihopai – The Southern Echelon

Pine Gap

Pine Gap – Australia Pine Gap is a satellite tracking station located near Alice Springs in Central Australia. It hosts the largest CIA facility outside America. In the late 1960s, the then prime minister, Harold Holt, entered into an agreement with the Americans that led to the establishment of Pine Gap. Holt disappeared in December … Continue reading

Horns of the Apocalypse – Strange Sounds Around the World

Aurora-Borealis

Fascinating video. At first I thought “OMG its 40 mins long!” but once I started watching, I was hooked. Awesome compilation.The sounds are very creepy and surprisingly loud. Kinda reminds me of a pipe organ.  I noticed in nearly every video, when the sound would start, the video or people standing around would instinctively look … Continue reading

Our Orbital Space Junkyard

Orbital debris, more commonly known as ‘space junk’, is an unavoidable byproduct of human space exploration.  Not only do we rubbish our Earthly environment with all sorts of crap, but since the dawn of orbital spaceflight in the 1950’s, humans have been littering the skies above as well. On September 14th this year, astronauts of … Continue reading

Pluto Demoted – And Then There Were Eight

In an historic vote, the International Astronomical Union has finally agreed upon the definition of a “Planet”.  The International Astronomical Union (IAU), the internationally recognized organisation for naming and defining all things celestial, has closed their triennial General Assembly conference in Prague by deciding that there are only eight planets currently present in our solar … Continue reading

BOINC – Berkeley Open Infrastructure for Network Computing

BOINC is an open-source software platform for distributed computing which uses volunteer computer resources around the world for computationally-intensive tasks in scientific research. It was originally developed for the SETI@home project and is now used by many different grid computing network projects. The BOINC Manager allows participants to connect easily with several independent projects and … Continue reading

Earth’s Close Encounter with Large Asteroid on July 3rd 2006

Astronomers anticipate the approach of a prominent sized asteroid as it passes Earth just beyond the orbit of the moon. Discovered by Lincoln Laboratory Near Earth Asteroid Research (LINEAR) on December 10th 2004, Asteroid 2004 XP14, is due to come uncomfortably close to Earth during the early hours of Monday July 3rd 2006. The LINEAR … Continue reading

Nix and Hydra: Naming Two Moons of Pluto

The official astronomical names of two newly discovered moons of Pluto have been revealed. Photographed in May 2005 by NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, and discovered by research teams in support of the New Horizons mission, the two moons found orbiting Pluto have been officially named Nix and Hydra by the International Astronomical Union (IAU). They … Continue reading

Deeply Impacted

At 3.52pm July 4th (Australian Eastern Stanadard Time) NASA successfully smashed their "Impactor" probe into Comet 9P/Tempel 1. Streamed live on NASA TV, the resulting impact was larger than most anticipated. The probe was released from the "Flyby" spacecraft into the path of the comet 24 hours prior to impact and proceeded to undertake a … Continue reading

Deep Impact Imminent

NASA announced on June 9th 2005 that it’s mission to collide a 1 metre wide, 372 kilogram impact probe – deployed by the "Deep Impact" spacecraft – into the nucleus of Comet 9P/Tempel 1, is expected to occur at 5.52am +/- 3mins GMT on July 4th 2005 (10.52pm PST on July 3rd).  Two or three days prior to impact they will know … Continue reading