“Hi diddle diddle,
The cat and the fiddle,
The cow jumped over the moon.
The little dog laughed,
To see such fun,
And the dish ran away with the spoon.”
My mother taught me that playful English nursery rhyme when I was about nine years old..
Notice how the poet who wrote it couldn’t think of anything more fanciful than having a living,
breathing creature ending up in the vicinity of the moon!
It took 300,000 of us a full decade of very hard work, but we did it! We sent two dozen
astronauts on the adventure of a lifetime and we brought all of them back alive. In 1961
President John F. Kennedy, youthful and exuberant and brimming over with confidence,
announced to the world that America’s scientists and engineers would—within a single decade
—land a man on the moon and return him safely to the earth. No cows need apply. But
potential human astronauts were bigly and hugely enthusiastic about their new opportunity
to fly through space to a different world.
By using the math and physics we had learned in school, we covered hundreds of pages with
with cryptic mathematical symbols to work out the details down to a gnat’s eyebrow.
We ended up hurling 24 American astronauts into the vicinity of the moon!. 12 of them
“kangaroo hopped“ on its surface.
Earlier this month, when the moon grew to its maximum apparent size, we were all reminded of
the excitement we felt during Project Apollo. Of course, the size of the moon did not actually
change, it merely moved up to its point of closest approach.
Systematic perturbations on the moon’s orbit coupled with rhythmic variations in its distance
from the Earth as it traveled around its elliptical orbit resulted in surprisingly large variations
in its apparent size and its brightness as seen from the Earth.
These distance variations, in turn, cause its observed diameter and its brightness to vary by as
much as 15 and 30 percent, respectively. When the moon approaches its maximum apparent
size and brightness, it is characterized as a supermoon. The biggest and brightest supermoons
are spaced out several decades apart.
My son, Chad, who participates in Special Olympics, used his cellphone camera to create the
two photographs that accompany this blog. He took the first picture at the crack of dawn
when the moon reached its maximum diameter at the edge of the parking lot at the Embassy
Suites Hotel in Lexington, Kentucky (population 360,000). He made the second photograph
12 hours later in my hometown of Springfield, Kentucky, ((population 2900). That second
picture was made on a small roadside hill beside the Bardstown Road above the IGA
Supermarket within sight of the yellow blinker light at the edge of town.
Author and short-course instructor, Tom Logsdon, who wrote this article, teaches the Launch
and Orbital Mechanics short course for The Applied Technology Institute. Click here for more
information on that course. He also teaches the GPS and Its International Competitors short
course. Click here for more information.
Nice live steaming video with soothing background music.
Earth from the ISS HDEV cameras aboard the International Space Station. Watch the earth roll by courtesy of the ISS cameras (2016). Captured by ISS HDEV cameras on board the International Space Station.
DRONE DISASTER Facebook’s massive Aquila drone that hopes to bring internet to the whole world CRASHES
GOVERNMENT authorities are investigating Facebook’s massive drone Aquila after it crash landed.
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTBS) launched a probe into the inaugural flight of Facebook’s drone which the social networking giant hopes will be able to bring internet to remote parts of the world.
Following the flight, Facebook said in a statement: “We were happy with the successful first test flight and were able to verify several performance models and components including aerodynamics, batteries, control systems and crew training, with no major unexpected results.”
However it has now emerged that the inaugural flight, which took place in July, was not without incident.
Peter Knudson, a NTSB spokesman, has today confirmed that when flying over Arizona in the United States the drone suffered “substantial” damage in a crash.
No one was harmed in the incident, and there was no damage on the ground.
Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg said in July: “We gathered lots of data about our models and the aircraft structure – and after two years of development, it was emotional to see Aquila actually get off the ground.
“But as big as this milestone is, we still have a lot of work to do.
“Eventually, our goal is to have a fleet of Aquilas flying together at 60,000 feet, communicating with each other with lasers and staying aloft for months at a time – something that’s never been done before.
“To get there, we need to solve some difficult engineering challenges.”
The crash could prove to be a setback for Facebook’s Internet.org plan, which hopes to bring extensive internet access to under-served areas of the world such as parts of Africa, India and the Middle East.
One of the super-moon photos is a humorous hoax. Can you spot it? We knew that ATI’s instructors are world-class experts. They are the best in the business, averaging 25 to 35 years of experience, and are carefully selected for their ability to explain advanced technology in a readily understandable manner. We did not know that many are talented photographers. We challenged them to take some photographs of the November 13-14 super-moon. See our previous post and then the resulting photographs.
Tom Logsdon, who teaches Orbital & Launch Mechanics – Fundamentals provided us some of the orbits key parameters.
Here are the best, most appropriate, average orbital parameters for Earth’s.
perigee radius: 363,300 Km (for the super-moon it was 356,508 Km (or 221,524 miles)
apogee radius: 405,400 Km
Inclination to the ecliptic plane: 5.145 deg
(the plane containing the Earth and the moon)
orbital eccentricity: 0. 0549 (sometimes quoted as 5.49 percent)
recession rate from the Earth: 3.8 cm/yr
Siderial month: 27.3 days
Synodic month: 29.5 days
( the sidereal month is the time it takes for the moon to make one 360 deg trip around the earth;
the synodic month is the month we observe from the spinning earth…it involves a few extra degrees of travel beyond the sidereal month)
Dr. Peter Zipfel
James Jenkins, Riva, MD
Matt Moran, Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Matt Moran, Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Richard Carande, Denver, CO
Richard Carande, Denver, CO
The photos that beat them all! Taken by the wife or Matt Moran
Get your cameras ready. The biggest, brightest full moon will be visible November 13 and 14, 2016. Take photos especially around moon rise and set times. If you get a good photo, please send a copy to us at ATI. We will feature a selection in a future blog post. The article below give useful hints on how to get good photos. You want some recognizable items in the foreground, such as a tree, person or building, to help frame the photo and to give a size prospective.
A full moon won’t be this close again until 2034…so the largest and most visible moon in 86 years.
This should also be a fun discussion and viewing opportunity for those of you who have children or grandchildren.
On its elliptical orbit, the moon will come to within 221,524 miles of the Earth. It will be closer than at any time since January 1948, almost 69 years ago. The moon orbits the earth, but the dimensions of the orbit do not remain constant.
The Slooh Community Observatory will offer a live broadcast for November’s full moon on Nov. 13 at 8 p.m. EST (0100 GMT on Nov. 14).
Military.com created this video to understanding why Veterans Day matters. Also see some of the additional links.
November 11 – let us celebrate our veterans and current service members.
Let us also celebrate my personal November 10 birthday for fun.
I am a strong supporter of the US Navy. I enjoy Navy videos. I have two son-in-laws serving. Serval of ATI’s instructors are retired Navy. This 54 minute video provides an in-depth history of airpower during the Vietnam War.
James Bond “Jim” Stockdale (December 23, 1923 – July 5, 2005) was a United States Navy vice admiral. He was awarded the Medal of Honor in the Vietnam War, during which he was a prisoner of war for over seven years.
Stockdale was the highest-ranking naval officer held as a prisoner in North Vietnam. He had led aerial attacks from the carrier USS Ticonderoga (CVA-14) during the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin Incident. On his next deployment, while Commander of Carrier Air Wing 16 aboard the carrier USS Oriskany (CV-34), he was shot down in North Vietnam on September 9, 1965.
During the late 1970s, he served as President of the Naval War College. Stockdale was a candidate for Vice President of the United States in the 1992 presidential election, on Ross Perot’s independent ticket.
A mere 49 years later –for me- the CHICAGO CUBS WIN THE WORLD SERIES!!!!
It has happened…..in the wild and amazing 2016 World Series…..THE CUBS HAVE WON!!!
So maybe this is a bit extravagant, but I first started watching and listening…..on the radio…. back in 1967. Growing up in Illinois, I was a third generation Cub fan following my father and his father and family (except for one renegade aunt who always supported the White Sox). The Cubs played at Wrigley Field back then, too, but only day games. No night games until 1988. Ernie Banks, Mr. Cub, was playing first after many Golden Glove years at short. And then the heartbreak of 1969. But enough!
Last night in Game 7 in a 10-inning matchup with the Cleveland Indians, the Cubs played fun, exciting, and winning baseball!
Some of the facts
· The Cubs last won the World Series in 1908.
· Last night was only the 4th time in history that a Game 7 went into extra innings.
· It was 1985 when the last team came back from a 3-1 Series deficit.
· Retiring Cubs catcher David Ross in his last at-bat hit a homer.
· Game 7 was played in Cleveland. Thousands of Cubs fans surrounded Wrigley Field in anticipation.
· Bill Murray
· Wrigley Field is still the best baseball park in the country!
His eyes were at least as blue as any I had ever seen before, buried in a gentle
and intelligent face. His movements were gentle and supple, too, the carefully
measured movements of a supremely confident individual. When the line of
engineers and managers stretching out in front of me finally melted away, those
blue eyes never left my face until I, too, moved on.
His name was Neal Armstrong. Two weeks earlier, he and Edwin Aldrin — two
lighthearted gazelles — were frolicking across the lunar landscape while Michael
Collins quietly orbited the moon in the Apollo Capsule circling overhead.
Up there on our roomy stage at Rockwell International, Armstrong had told us
that, when he and his two companions were in their Apollo capsule 350 feet
above Cape Canaveral awaiting liftoff, it suddenly dawned on them that “our 6
million-pound Saturn V moon rocket was 90-percent high explosives divided
between three enormously powerful stages each of which was awarded to the
He and his compatriots were the heroes. But, he showered compliments on us,
nevertheless. “The S-II stage, designed and built here in Seal Beach, California,
provided us with the smoothest ride of all,” he told us. “I’m not sure why it turned
out to be so smooth. But I am quite sure nearly every expert in this room could
explain it to me in five minutes or so.”
Rockets, old and new, have exploded — and failed in various other ways! — on a
fairly regular basis. America’s modern multistage chemical rockets carrying
unmanned satellites into orbit, have a 94-percent success rate. They fail on one
flight in 16. Those with astronauts on board are, on average, four times more
reliable: over the years, they have failed on about one mission in 64.
Booster rockets are extremely delicate machines. Consequently, the September
1, 2016, ground-test failure of the Falcon 9 built by SpaceX, was not at all
surprising. According to the Los Angeles Times, their (unmanned) flights headed
for Earth orbit have experienced a success rate of 93-percent. In other words, the
SpaceX boosters have failed, on average, on one flight in 14, a tad more
frequently than the long-term average for American boosters headed toward
New booster rockets fail more often during their initial break-in period when their
designers are trying to find and eliminate any flaws in their design. In the early
days of the space program, the first seven Vanguard rockets, for example, failed
to reach their desired orbits.
Will the failure of the $72 million Falcon 9 with a $200 million Facebook
Communication Satellite on top cause SpaceX to stop launching satellites into
orbit? Not likely. The destruction of the Hindenburg Dirigible did cause a thriving
industry to collapse. But there are hardly any other examples of disasters that
have caused the captains of Industry to bail out of a successful business.
Most satellites and their boosters are adequately insured. And their insurance
payouts almost always arrived promptly without serious hassle.
Will large numbers of customers abandon SpaceX as a result of this expensive
ground-test explosion? Not likely. Measured in terms of dollars-per-pound
delivered into orbit, a launch on the Falcon 9 costs only about half as much as a
launch on any other competitive booster produced and marketed in the United
This article was written by Tom Logsdon who teaches frequent short courses for
The Applied Technology Institute Headquartered in Riva, Maryland, a stone’s
throw from Annapolis, just North of Washington, D.C.
Upcoming courses to be taught by Mr. Logsdon include:
* “The GPS and Its International Competitors.” Colorado Springs, Colorado.
December 5-8, 2016
* “Launch Vehicles and Orbital Mechanics.” Albuquerque, New Mexico, January
*The GPS and Its International Competitors” Columbia, Maryland. February
*Launch Vehicles and Orbital Mechanics.” Columbia, Maryland. February 28-
March 3, 2017.
* “Team-Based Problem Solving” Columbia, Maryland. March 21-22, 2017.
* ”The GPS and Its International Competitors.” Columbia, Maryland. April 17-20,
1. “Rocket Explosion is Another Crisis for Elon Musk.” Russ Mitchell. Los Angeles
Times. September 2, 2016. Pg. C2.
2. “Launch Delays Likely after Blast.” Samantha Masunga. Los Angeles Times.
September 2, 2016. Pg. C1.
3. “Rocket Launch is a Blow to SpaceX, Facebook.” Samantha Masunga and Jim
Puzzanghara. Los Angeles Times. September 2, 2016. Pg. 1.
This is a good article on protecting against the cyber insider threat. I quote below the action items, but you should read the full article for more insight.
What you can do
There are ways you can protect your organization’s (and your customer’s) data. It’s not difficult, but it will require diligence.
- On-board your employees in a consistent manner that properly trains them in cyber vulnerabilities
- Maintain this training regularly
- Assess your organization’s and employee’s weakness so you can better mitigate cyber vulnerabilities and risks
- Understand cyber risks
Your IT professionals aren’t the true gatekeepers – your employees are!
ATIcourses offers several practical cyber security training programs that can help with the ongoing need for cyber technical training.