Space news round-up

Paul Raven @ 08-02-2011

A little flurry of space-related headlines have blown into my RSS Zeitgeist:

Stay tuned for further developments… 🙂


SpaceFence: The Movie

Paul Raven @ 20-01-2011

Via FlowingData, here’s a sort of promo-documentary-advertorial-edutainment spot for Lockheed Martin’s Space Fence system, designed to protect us from rogue bits of crap colliding in orbit above us.

As remarked at FD, I think it’s likely that a lot of the visualisations here are speculative, but the result is something that looks momentarily convincing in that ultimately-unconvincing-once-you’ve-thought-about-it Hollywood way – designed to sell the concept rather than the actuality, in other words. (In other words, I expect the Space Fence control room will look a lot less like the bridge of a space opera dreadnought… though there’s a part of me that wishes that wasn’t the case.)

Makes sense, really; if you want to convince people that putting in expensive systems to mitigate (or at least monitor) potential existential risk problems is worthwhile, making them look a bit sexy is a good tactic. I suppose this is a kind of design fiction, too…

[ Note: my assumption that the footage in the video partakes in artistic license is just that, an assumption; I would very much like to see the real thing, or evidence that the footage represents the reality. If anyone at Lockheed is reading, I’d love to drop in and take a closer look… though you’d probably have to stump up my airfare. 🙂 ]