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    NeilFraser

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    [–] Stratolaunch, the largest airplane in history (by wingspan), flew for the first time this morning. Two fuselages with six 747 engines, designed to carry rockets suspended underneath the center wing spar. NeilFraser 47 points ago * (lasted edited 10 days ago) in WeirdWings

    Sadly there is no rocket for it to carry. So it may never get used. :(

    The only option they have at the moment is Pegasus, but it's tiny and can already be carried on a Lockheed TriStar. They've made noises about carrying three Pegasus rockets at once, but that makes no sense.

    [–] Illinois Democrats to Trump: Show tax returns or be barred from 2020 ballot NeilFraser 8 points ago in politics

    From a health and safety point of view, it would be better to divide the load into separate pieces and carry them out individually. Just saying.

    [–] To the guy on the motorcycle that I almost hit today NeilFraser 2 points ago * (lasted edited 12 days ago) in sanfrancisco

    I was merging onto the I-80 at night and checked my mirrors. There were a pair of headlights behind me in the next lane, but they were far away, so I proceeded to change lanes. Turns out what I was seeing wasn't a car that was far away. It was a motorcycle right behind me with two headlights. It had to swerve to avoid me.

    I felt horrible, and still do. Watch out for motorcycles with two headlights. They are smaller, dimmer, and packed closer together, so at night they look exactly like a car that's in the distance.

    [–] There’s never a good time for a failure but this is one of the worst ones. NeilFraser 205 points ago in CatastrophicFailure

    The OP's video looks like it is somewhere like India. But here's a basically identical video from Chicago: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oP9uc8rWwdk

    Train went up an escalator.

    [–] The Golden Gate Bridge has gotten safer and less congested with traffic thanks to this contraption NeilFraser 2 points ago in bayarea

    Presumably if there's a failure of one zipper truck, it's easy enough to run the other zipper truck off the end of the barriers, drive it back across the bridge like a normal vehicle, and do a second pass.

    [–] Sanders Says He Agreed to Fox News Town Hall to Send Simple Message to Trump Voters: 'He Lied to You' NeilFraser 4 points ago in politics

    (All Yer Shit)

    That's the problematic part of the formula. Not all his 'shit' is physical objects that can be put on eBay. His biggest asset isn't his buildings, it is his name. "Trump" conveys an aura of power, trust, and wealth to many people (and an aura of revulsion to many others). He can licence his name to manufacturers. They will find that "Trump Tampons" sell much better than "ACME Tampons".

    It is genuinely difficult to quantify the value of the "Trump" name. In the past he's just assigned whatever value makes his Forbes ranking look good. Of course, if he lies about his net worth, then his Fobes ranking goes up, and the "Trump" name becomes worth more, leading to a self-fulfilling net worth.

    [–] A little over 50 years ago... NeilFraser 2 points ago in apollo

    The US always vents the air to space. Russians have pumps which allow them to save 70% of the air, before venting the remainder. The Quest airlock on ISS uses a Russian-provided depressurization pump.

    [–] What If We Detonated All Nuclear Bombs at Once? NeilFraser 49 points ago in videos

    Likewise, weight of a 747 is often used as a measure of scale. That's a really bad metric, since a 747 is built using aluminum and advanced construction techniques to keep it as light as possible. They are huge, but deceptively lightweight. A 747 can carry two 747s as cargo (assuming they've been crushed into container-sized cubes).

    [–] Boston Dynamics’ latest robot is a mechanical ostrich that loads pallets NeilFraser 9 points ago in technology

    And they do take DARPA money.

    They did. Google stopped those contracts for ethical reasons when Boston Dynamics became a Google company. I haven't heard of them going back to DARPA now that they are no longer Google.

    [–] SATURN V VS NEXT USA ROCKETS NeilFraser 3 points ago in apollo

    "Big Falcon Rocket" and "Big Falcon Spaceship" are now "Super Heavy" and "Starship" respectively.

    [–] Buran-B. A planned Buran bomber variant to carry 5 BOR spaceplanes that have been converted into autonomous nuclear bombs. (1980s C.E.) NeilFraser 14 points ago * (lasted edited a month ago) in WeirdWings

    It cost around $1 billion to launch a Space Shuttle mission (including both fixed and operational costs, not including sunk development costs). It cost around $100 million to launch an expendable Atlas V, and around $750 million to build a Hubble copy. The math never worked out for the Space Shuttle.

    [–] Buran-B. A planned Buran bomber variant to carry 5 BOR spaceplanes that have been converted into autonomous nuclear bombs. (1980s C.E.) NeilFraser 17 points ago in WeirdWings

    There was a study about 15 years ago that concluded that one could build and launch a brand new copy of Hubble for the same price of an STS repair mission.

    However, the report's conclusion was that the space shuttle was still worthwhile because a new expendable mission would not be approved by Congress, whereas space shuttle's ongoing funding was secure.

    [–] My GF drew this for me to celebrate DM-1 NeilFraser 8 points ago in SpaceXLounge

    I like that she used the old Dragon logo. It is so much more beautiful and artistic than the current one.

    [–] Brexit: EU rejects May's request for three-month delay | Politics NeilFraser 2 points ago in worldnews

    I've just returned from 2015 where I stopped SeekerSpock32 at the last moment. Had he succeeded, the crashing of the UK in 2019 wouldn't have happened, which in turn would have precluded the subsequent rise of Madagascar in 2024 to fill the resulting power vacuum. Remember, without Madagascar, we'd have all perished in the great plague of 2038. Preserve the timeline, people.

    [–] Brexit: EU rejects May's request for three-month delay | Politics NeilFraser 1 points ago in worldnews

    They could also revoke Article 50, then instantly retrigger it. This would be the ultimate way to kick the can down the road. Nothing the EU could do about it. Brexit pending in perpetuity!

    [–] Brexit: EU rejects May's request for three-month delay | Politics NeilFraser 1 points ago in worldnews

    What are your feelings on the Crown, Shillings and Farthings? The current UK currency would be unrecognizable to anyone before 1960. 240 pence in the pound...

    [–] What small lies like "Brown cows produce chocolate milk" or "Hedgehogs grow on chestnut trees" can you tell young children? NeilFraser 216 points ago in AskReddit

    My daughter has one of these (a Fisher Price Code-a-Pillar). Great toy, but obnoxiously loud. A trip to my soldering bench, and one 40Ω resistor later, it's now much quieter.

    [–] This train stop in Japan has no entries or exits, it has been put there merely so that people can stop off in the middle of a train journey and admire the scenery. NeilFraser 3 points ago in pics

    Definitely dual gauge. An electrical third rail would be on insulators. But it is still surprising since if the common rail were next to the platform then both trains would be aligned with the platform edge. As it is, only the standard-gauge trains can reach the platform. This would make sense if the narrow-gauge trains were local freight, like lumber or mining or something. It's also interesting to note that the standard-gauge rail looks dull and virtually unused, when compared to the other two.

    [–] An-225 and Buran on Baikonur NeilFraser 3 points ago in WeirdWings

    Here are some more views of Buran's mate-demate device:

    https://www.thelivingmoon.com/45jack_files/03files/Buran_003.html

    I never understood how they controlled the orbiter's pitch using that thing. The American versions had separate hoists fore and aft.

    [–] Private EM-1 Launch Guide [Infographic by me] NeilFraser 8 points ago in SpaceXLounge

    EM-1 has no crew, so technically that's not a problem. Of course a primary purpose of EM-1 was to flight test SLS before a crew launches on EM-2.