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Sunday, May 3, 2015

The Kraken Squadron and There LDM Round 3! How Many Volunteers to Run a Magellan Mission. Space and Science News. The Imaginarium.

Kraken Squadron Survives The Third Round of the Long Duration Mission!

Yes troops, shocking as it is, the Kraken Squadron successfully finished Round 3 of this year's LDM on April 25th.  The day started early for them - 7:45 A.M.  Many of them aren't use to getting up before 1:00 P.M. on a Saturday - pampered as they are....

The Krakenites sit atop Uranus (the floor tiles at Central Elementary form the solar system) and plan out their strategy to save the Federation from Romulan domination.  Bradyn was fascinated by the game board pieces used to represent the alien and home ships and had to be reminded more times than patience required to keep his hands to himself so Scott could strategize.  You can see him left hand creeping toward that yellow piece.       

The meeting moved from Uranus to the Conference Room when Kraken Coach Christine arrived.
Hannah is explaining the who and what fors so all could grasp the details.  Kevin was bored and annoyed that his plan of "attack first and ask questions" later wasn't being adopted.   

Captain Scott, sensing he was losing control of the discussion, brought the room's attention back to himelf.  Bradyn, sensing a loss of focus made a grab for the yellow piece.  The move was thwarted by a swat on the hand by an observant Collin.

The crew decided to train by recording.  Bradyn and Dakota review the Tactical station.  

Young Collin E., was given the responsibility of Damage Control after it was pointed out that he was smarter than your average 6th grader.  

Travis B., was trusted with the Security Station EVEN after nearly shooting his eye out the last time he got has hands on a phaser (hence the glasses).  

Whew.... the right decision was made to put Hannah at Communications.  Communications was the busiest station for Round 3.

Kevin got over his boredom when given the Sensors station.  

This is Noah.  Noah was Scott's right hand man for this Round.  As First Officer, Noah had to run the crew and make sure all the Captain's orders were carried out.

Collin was Chief of Operations.  He agreed to take the job if allowed to wear his shell necklace.  It reminds him of Earth - so far away.... 

The mission started.  Scott took his place standing square on the Bridge ready to bark orders.  Noah stood one level below - thus showing his obedience to the Captain.  This station also put him in better range to wring any officer's neck who disobeyed a command.   

One strike later the crew surrounded the ship's tactical screen hoping for a life saving idea to pop into someone's head to save them from themselves.

Oops, it appears Capt. Scott was cruelly brought down by a Romulan phaser.  He is seen above receiving excellent medical treatment by one of the ship's medics.   Scott was back on his feet barking away a moment or two after the picture was taken.  First Officer Noah's moment in the spotlight was over.     

Dakota and Colin are seen working through a spot of damage in the Engineering Hallway.

Noah micromanaging Travis after the Captain's "accident".  

The final picture at the end of Round 3.  Troops, I present to you the Kraken Squadron in all their might and glory.  

How Many Voyager Cadets and Space Center Staff Does it Take to Run a Magellan Mission?

I'll let the photo speak for itself....

Space and Science News
By Mark Daymont
Farpoint Voyager Educator


Last image sent by the Messenger space probe.

A new crater is detected on Mercury! Er - rather, a new crater was created on Mercury, as the Messenger space probe crashed into the far side of the little planet. After 4 years and 250,000 images, the NASA Messenger spacecraft program came to a close, and the satellite was allowed to smack into the surface at about 8,700 miles per hour. The are no images of the crash itself, as it occurred on the side of Mercury facing away from Earth telescopes, and space telescopes were unable to face the crashpoint as the planet was too close to the glare of the Sun.

NASA infographic of the success of Messenger.

Messenger completed its mission in 2012, but it was in good enough shape to continue experiments and reconnaissance. It successfully discovered Mercury's off-set internal magnetic field, imaged water ice deposits at the poles, and helped scientists unravel the geological history of the planet.

Russian Progress Spaceship Loses Control

Earlier Progress spaceship in orbit.
Just a few days earlier, on Sunday, Progress M-25M deorbited and burned up in the atmosphere. The Pirs docking module was cleared for the upcoming docking of Progress M-27M. Unfortunately, that's not going to happen.  On Tuesday April 28, the spacecraft was lifted up into orbit on a Soyuz 2-1A rocket on a path to get the robotic cargo ship to the ISS in a short six hour flight. According to Russian mission controllers, the spacecraft separated from the rocket OK and engineers prepared for a series of thruster burns that would move the Progress toward the station. 

Earlier Progress on approach to the ISS. Good view of the docking hatch.
Apparently engineers detected glitches in the communications with the craft. It seems that the solar panels did deploy, but some of the communications antennas suffered problems or were not deployed. Confirmation was made that the craft was spinning out of control, and several attempts to regain control over the last two days did not work. Russian Mission Control has declared a Loss of Mission. Their next task will be to try to deorbit the craft safely and burn it up in the atmosphere.
The Imaginarium

A painting within a painting being painted by the painter who painted the painting where he is painting


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