In response to the question from last week about meteorites being
radioactive, Patrick informs me:

  "I talked to the meteorite people here at psu. Asteroids are
radioactive but for different reasons than I thought. Space is a
radioactive environment. Particle bombardment makes rocks radioactive
in the short term. Once they reach earth they cool off."

*Newsy News*

SpaceX delayed yet again, now NET May 19 (waiting for Soyuz launch and
docking with Expedition 31 crew)

*XCOR Hits the Road*

In order to stress test parts of their piston fuel pump they stuffed
it in a motorcycle and drove across the desert Southwest. There's a
fun way to test parts!


*Unreal Photo of Earth*

It looks like a painting, but it's a straight up photo from the ISS


Coords: -30.817317, 139.825657

*Running Sound Through Water in 0g*

Don Pettit put large drops of water on speakers he found lying around
the ISS and put some tones, and then tunes through them.


*Transit of Venus Via Hubble Via the Moon*

Can't look at the sun? Look at light bouncing off the Moon instead.
Hubble will "watch" the upcoming transit of Venus by measuring the dip
in light bouncing off the moon as Venus occults the disk of the sun.


*Peeking Inside Curiosity's Shell*

Mars Science Laboratory (Mars rover named Curiosity) woke up to do
some diagnostics on the way to Mars.  It doesn't have a window, but it
can light up the inside of the aeroshell it's packed into and take an
out of focus image, which proves the electronics are working as


*View from Freedom 7*

Raw film from an engineering camera on the Mercury Redstone suborbital
rocket that lifted the first American into space on May 5, 1961.


*Twit Pics from ISS*

Inside the cupola with the robotic arm controls. THIS is what a space
ship should look like :)


Don Pettit looking out the cupola with the world below


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