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Author Topic: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night  (Read 6009 times)

Offline Hadrian

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Fri Sep 15 yahoo.com

The biggest and brightest manmade object orbiting Earth just got bigger and brighter

Astronauts on board the International Space Station (ISS) unfurled a new pair of solar energy panels that sprout out of the end of a new 17.5-ton truss section, which was brought up by the space shuttle Atlantis. They are the largest solar panels ever taken to space; fully unfolded, they reach a length of 240 feet (73 meters). They are designed to double the ISS's capability to generate power from sunlight when they go online during a future shuttle mission.


More: http://news.yahoo.com/s/space/20060915/sc_space/brighterspacestationmightrivalvenusinnightsky

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Offline syhprum

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #1 on: 16/09/2006 10:26:19 »
Amatuer photographs with high grade equiptment seem to have a resolution of about 10m/pixel, I know that their time is very valuable but what could a top grade profesional telescope like Keck achive

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Offline Soul Surfer

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #2 on: 18/09/2006 10:04:48 »
Probably not all that much better unless they have an elaborate atmospheric deblurring system  big telescopes are mainly required for sensitivity not resolution.

The view of a planet through an eight inch amateur telescope on a good night is as good as any of the photographs that the palomar teleshope took when it ewas built.  Nowadays amateurs take multiple exposures with 10 and 12 inch telecopes and align them using image processing to produce images far better than was achievable by the best telescopes a few years ago it is truly amazing what can be done.

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Offline science_guy

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #3 on: 18/09/2006 16:01:18 »
hmm... I thought that solar panels were supposed to not let light reflect.

Its also amazing to think of what can still be done, but hasn't been done yet


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Offline Soul Surfer

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #4 on: 18/09/2006 10:04:48 »
Probably not all that much better unless they have an elaborate atmospheric deblurring system  big telescopes are mainly required for sensitivity not resolution.

The view of a planet through an eight inch amateur telescope on a good night is as good as any of the photographs that the palomar teleshope took when it ewas built.  Nowadays amateurs take multiple exposures with 10 and 12 inch telecopes and align them using image processing to produce images far better than was achievable by the best telescopes a few years ago it is truly amazing what can be done.

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Offline science_guy

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #5 on: 18/09/2006 16:01:18 »
hmm... I thought that solar panels were supposed to not let light reflect.

Its also amazing to think of what can still be done, but hasn't been done yet


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Offline bostjan

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #6 on: 19/09/2006 09:06:41 »
Well, most solar panels are pretty shiny.  Ideally, you would want them to be able to absorb more photons and generate more power, but simple theoretical limitations keep efficiency low, so certain kinds of light being reflected are really okay, because you don't want to just generate a ton of heat, you'd rather knocking electrons loose.
 

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #7 on: 19/09/2006 15:24:05 »
This light trail photograph of the ISS was taken in 2000:-

http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap001214.html
 

Offline bostjan

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #8 on: 19/09/2006 09:06:41 »
Well, most solar panels are pretty shiny.  Ideally, you would want them to be able to absorb more photons and generate more power, but simple theoretical limitations keep efficiency low, so certain kinds of light being reflected are really okay, because you don't want to just generate a ton of heat, you'd rather knocking electrons loose.
 

ROBERT

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #9 on: 19/09/2006 15:24:05 »
This light trail photograph of the ISS was taken in 2000:-

http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap001214.html
 

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Re: Brighter Space Station Might Rival Venus in Night
« Reply #9 on: 19/09/2006 15:24:05 »

 

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