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Christopher Dreyer
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My son has a project in his 4th grade class where students are research topics that interest them. He is researching future technology. He heard about +Elon Musk and is determined to ask him a few questions. The link goes to Liam's letter to Elon. I'm posting this here hoping that Elon will see it. If you reply it will make a 9 year old's year.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DJanx8rM0Fgi6x3s6dWKXEWEvmiO7b9ZVK_Qd2c4ZCA/pub

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My son has a project in his 4th grade class where students are research topics that interest them. He is researching future technology. He heard about +Elon Musk and is determined to ask him a few questions. The link goes to Liam's letter to Elon. I'm posting this here hoping that Elon will see it. If you reply it will make a 9 year old's year.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DJanx8rM0Fgi6x3s6dWKXEWEvmiO7b9ZVK_Qd2c4ZCA/pub

My son's 4th grade project is "What will change in the future." His research is  to include talking to people who know the subject. I told him about the Hyperloop. Now he wants to talk to +Elon Musk.

He was writing his research plans this morning before school and asked his mom, "Who's that guy with the train in a tube idea?".
"Elon Musk," she said.
"Ok, I'll call him.".
"You can't call him," she said, "Lots of people want to talk to him."
"I can try," he said.

Elon, what do you say?

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I've been listening to This Week in Science for years. It was one of the first podcasts l listened to. Back then it was taped at UC Davis and broadcast on UCD radio. I really need to support them financially and you should too. 
Good morning plussers!!!

To start off my Saturday, besides coffee, I want to spread the love I've been receiving in SPADES as of late.

So, I'd like to point you towards +This Week in Science (TWIS), who does a phenomenal job bringing science to the masses and has been doing so for YEARS through various means. You can watch +Kiki Sanford, +Blair Bazdarich and +justin jackson record their shows live on Google+ each week, PLUS download the produced podcast from iTunes!

I urge you to consider becoming a patron of TWIS because they're awesome people who create an awesome show and are extremely impassioned about delivering science news and commentary every week to a wide audience!

Oh and go circle their page, while you're at it. I linked it above. 

Have a great weekend!
https://www.patreon.com/thisweekinscience

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Great post. And the lead author on the paper is from my university, +Colorado School of Mines.
Somewhere Across the Sea

When we look at the Moon, we see a surface pocked with craters, scattered between seas of basalt from ancient lava flows. Since the Moon is not geologically active, it’s easy to imagine that the formation of lunar seas was triggered by large impacts. That’s actually been the dominant theory for some time. Now new research indicates that for at least one of the great seas, Oceanus Procellarum, that isn’t the case.

The results have been recently published in Nature, and shows that the great sea seems to be the result of geological activity. The team looked at data from the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL), which is a pair of satellites that mapped the gravity of the Moon in great detail. When they analyzed the data, the team found rift zones bordering Oceanus Procellarum. These rift zones (seen on the right of the image below) are fairly straight with sharp angles, which is not the type of thing you see with impact zones.

We have observed rift zones on several planets, as well as on Saturn’s moon Enceladus, but finding them on the Moon is rather surprising. The Moon is not massive enough to drive plate tectonic activity on its own, and it isn’t driven by strong tidal effects like some moons of Jupiter and Saturn. So it isn’t clear how such rift zones could have formed on the lunar surface. One idea proposed by the authors is that the Moon’s crust is rather thin, and the under layers of that region were heated by radioactive decay. The Procellarum region is known to have higher concentrations of radioactive elements such as uranium and thorium, and this could have driven rift formation in the past.

Regardless of the cause, it seems clear that the Moon was not simply a Moon battered by ancient impacts. It also had a few geological tricks of its own, and the famous Man in the Moon feature of Oceanus Procellarum is the result of one of them.

Image: NASA/Colorado School of Mines/MIT/JPL/Goddard Space Flight Center

Paper: Andrews-Hanna, J. C. et al. Structure and evolution of the lunar Procellarum region as revealed by GRAIL gravity data. Nature 514, 68–71 (2014)
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A group from Hawaii will be hosting an exhibition of space mining robots in a few weeks. They plan for this to become an international competition of university student designed and built robotic space miners. They have a RocketHub campaign where you can donate to help make it happen. It's what I plan to do.

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Additive manufacturing course offered at the +Colorado School of Mines in August. 

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The ISEE-3 spacecraft is being revived by a group of private of space entrepreneurs. Here is the trajectory.
I created an animation of the original ISEE-3 trajectory from back in 1978-1985.  ISEE-3 was originally launched to an Earth-Sun L1 orbit in 1978. The escape trajectory, Lunar swingbys and all the fun cis-lunar stuff was done by Bob Farquhar, David Dunham, Craig Roberts and others working at GSFC back in the early 1980s. Really excellent work.  It's fun to see how it left, and then compare that to how it's coming back.  Note that it leaves to the top, which is the direction of the Earth's velocity around the sun.  This will be important later, because the spacecraft subsequently drifted gradually in front of the Earth in heliocentric space and eventually went 360 degrees and caught up the the Earth from the other direction (which we'll see in the final animation).

 I'll put together another animation later showing the comet flybys that occurred after this, and then the 1987-2014 trajectory and post those.

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Photo Shoot

Starting Monday, Prove Your World will begin a new video series on a range of topics, starting with gravity.

In the mean time, check out some publicity shots taken by +Kevin Schoonover!
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2014-05-31
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