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Author Topic: Why did the Apollo team see the Sun rise every 15 minutes?  (Read 1753 times)

Lin Stuart

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Lin  Stuart asked the Naked Scientists:
   
I heard Apollo 10 Astronauts say that every 15 minutes they saw the sun rise over the earth.

Can you explain why please?

Is time different in space?

And aboard the space station Mir, the woman astronaut was without food and it took 3 months to get back to her to pick her up...is that right?

What do you think?


 

Offline RD

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Why did the Apollo team see the Sun rise every 15 minutes?
« Reply #1 on: 19/03/2009 16:58:10 »
A spacecraft in low earth orbit, like the international space station (ISS), completes an orbit much faster than the earth rotates, (15.7x faster in the case of the ISS). So the the craft will pass into and out of the Earth's Shadow (experiencing sunset/sunrise respectively) many times in in 24 hours*. 

[* During winter and summer solstices the ISS is in continuous sunlight for several days].
« Last Edit: 19/03/2009 17:09:38 by RD »
 

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Why did the Apollo team see the Sun rise every 15 minutes?
« Reply #1 on: 19/03/2009 16:58:10 »

 

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