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The bombardment of comets

Possibly, comets brought water to Earth

To see exactly what is in the comet, it is necessary to analyse its substance with the help of different high sensitive devices, bringing samples to Earth. But aboard a small spacecraft such devices are difficult to place, because the size of the station Stardust 1,7×0,7×0,7 meters – about the same size as the Desk. How to take a sample of matter, flying from the comet’s nucleus at high speed? Space standards Stardust was moving slowly relative to the comet, about one and a half times slower than fly around the Earth artificial satellites. However, even this speed was several times greater than that of the bullet, the station flew over one second 6 km from the Contact of dust particles with the container of solid material at this speed (more than 20 thousand km/h) would have led to their strongest heating and evaporating. The only way to mildly catch and stop these dust particles, turned out to be a trap made of unique material – aerogel, which was established in 1931, but the big distribution has not received. Continue reading

Available on science

At the end of last week in Ulyanovsk has started an interesting project Simple science. Its initiator is the teacher of UVAU HA Leonid Podymov.

— The main purpose of my lectures is to educate. I would like to tell Ulyanovsk on the latest and most interesting achievements in modern science into simple language so that it is clear even to the unprepared listener, — says the organizer of the “Simple science”.

Leonid physicist by education, so the project is focused mainly on natural Sciences. In particular, the first lecture was devoted to astronomy — or rather, cosmic distances and scale.

— Many people know that, for example, our Solar system is big. But it is actually an ordinary person is unlikely to adequately represent these scales and distances — simply because it is not something to compare. I tried using a few simple techniques to bring clarity in such comparisons, says the teacher.

So, during the speech he invited the audience to spend with him a few thought experiments.

— Let’s imagine that our planet has shrunk to the size of a standard basketball ball whose radius 12.2 centimeters. If we reduce all other razmery accordance with a given scale, we get the following illustrative figures: the Sun will be a ball with radius 13 meters. Continue reading

Astronomer Fyodor Bredikhin

Astronomer Fyodor Bredikhin was born in 1831 in the city of Nikolaev in the ancient noble family.

To 14 years Bredikhin was home-schooled – in the estate of her father Colonie near Kherson. Then was sent to boarding school at Richelieu Lyceum in Odessa, and four years later transferred to the Lyceum. However, studying in the lycée he did not like, and in 1851 he transferred to Moscow University physico-mathematical faculty.

Bredikhina was interested in physics, but, obeying the fashion of those years, he intended to follow in the footsteps of his father and uncle, that is certainly to enroll in the naval service or in the artillery. Only in the last year after practical work in the Observatory Bredikhin became interested in astronomy.

In 1862 he defended his master’s thesis “On the tails of comets”. This study as would be anticipated the main direction of its future work in astronomy.

In 1867 Professor Bredikhina was granted planning a business trip. Good knowledge of the language enabled him, while in Italy, to be familiar with the works of the Society of spectroscopy. Many Italian researchers have become his friends, including the famous discoverer of the “canals” of Mars the astronomer Schiaparelli. Continue reading

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