Archive for April, 2008

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Moondust and Duct Tape

April 23, 2008

This story about duct tape use on the moon was simply too good to pass up on cross-posting.

[I]n [the] Taurus-Littrow [valley, in the Sea of Serenity, on the moon] a missing fender was a potential disaster. The reason is moondust. When a rover rolls across the lunar surface, it kicks up a plume of moondust in its wake. (Astronauts called them “rooster tails.”) Without a fender, the rover would be showered by a spray of dark, abrasive grit. White spacesuits blackened by dust could turn into dangerous absorbers of the fierce lunar sun with astronauts overheating inside. Sharp-edged dust wiped off visors would scratch the glass, making helmets difficult to see out of. Moondust also had an uncanny way of working itself into hinges, latches and joints, rendering them useless.

Cernan: “And I hate to say it, but I’m going to have to take some time to try … to get that fender back on. Jack, is the tape under my seat, do you remember?” (He’s referring to a roll of ordinary, gray duct tape.)

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Powered Suits, Now Even Closer

April 18, 2008

From the BBC, comes “US army develops robotic suits” a news report guaranteed to make all Heinlein fans and Wilcox children drool.

And if you never have, you should go read Starship Troopers (but skip the movie).