Wolf Rayet 104

A Wolf Rayet star is larger than the Sun and two or there times hotter. It is suspected that some stars of this class are fusing heavier elements in their cores. They are identified by light emitted by ionised helium, nitrogen and carbon.

WR 104 is about 8500 light years from Earth. It is actually three stars, and part of a small nebula. Like our galaxy, which is sometimes called a pinwheel galaxy, Wolf Rayet is a pinwheel nebula. This might be evidence that celestial bodies from far away came close enough that their gravitational attractions bound them together and produced the pinwheel effect.

Interest in Wolf Rayet 104 is fueled by being near Earth, but also due to what we have learned about gamma ray bursts.

Fritz Zwicky

Born around 1900, just 10 years or so younger than Albert Einstein was a truly remarkable astronomer. The father of Dark Energy, Fritz Zwicky was the son of a Swiss Industrialist who lived in Bulgaria.

Dark Matter

Fermi-Lab scientists have spent the last 15 years or so searching for particles of Dark Matter. Using a disk of Gallium metal cooled to nearing zero Kelvin, scientists have not detected the particles. They sought out a particle with mass, traveling at less than the speed of light and unimpeded by other matter.

Missing Matter

Fritz Zwicky first referred to Missing Matter or Missing Mass when he observed galaxies at Mount Wilson, and calculated their mass and the speed of rotation. He found that stars near the edge of the galaxy sped around its center too quickly. Based on the gravitational pull of the galaxy, they should have been flung into space.

Floor Space Time

Based on floor space packed to ceiling with average mix of household goods, i.e. fully pack storage closet, garage or truck.

Square feet with man-hours to load, unload, recommended crew size and elapsed time with recommended crew.

20-2-1/2-1
60-6-4/2-2
100-7-5/3-2
200-10-7/4-3
300-16-13/4-4
400-18-16/4-5

Mars

It was refreshing to see Bezos show off his lunar module, Blue Moon and its capabilities. Travel to our Moon can take less than a week, and offers a staging ground with an escape velocity substantially lower than Earth’s.

The Moon has a surface area larger than the entire continent of Africa. The State of Texas is 150 times smaller in surface area than the Moon. With a very thin atmosphere, high speed trains could travel the Moon at 1,000 km/hr, or higher.

Musk has touted the importance of Martian habitation. It’s fine that he works on that, while Musk and Bezos each grab roughly $5 billion in federal subsidies per annum they have produced greater results then would have been achieved by a NASA program for a higher cost.

Economists estimate that in 2019 dollars, the Apollo Program cost NASA $ 119 billion. Estimates of the per shot cost for Space Shuttle program put the cost at around $ 500 million per mission.

Lacking a launch program, the Air Force and NASA have used a combination of Amazon and Tesla launch programs, the United Launch Alliance, consisting of Boeing and Lockheed and even Russian government launch programs.

The European Space Agency also uses the Ariane program with launch costs around $150 million per mission.

Comet Amino Acids

Having completed the 11th grade early, pondering summer and dreading a stint in mosquito infested singing camp, complete with bad food and latrines, my mind wandered to the origins of life.

Don’t get me wrong, quite literally light came from darkness and the world was created in seven days. But new details emerge about some of the finer details.

The postulation the comets carry glycolic acids, glyceric acids and the amino acid glycene has the song leaders at summer camps atwitter composing new verse for the familiar campfire tunes.

We have known for some time that our solar system contains large stashes of methane is quite well understood. I think there are at least four new verses for Bill Grogan’s goat about the methane on the moon Titan.

Just like the goat had a formula for stopping the train, methane has a molecular formula CH4. Hydrocarbons like methane, propane and butane are found through out the solar system. This should lead us to search for the termites and farting cows of Titan.

One source for methane on earth are landfills, and we now endeavor to capture the methane and use it for productive purposes rather than allowing it to simply drift into the atmosphere.

While some might worry incessantly about the methane entering the atmosphere, with a molecular weight of 16.04 it is more buoyant than glycine which has a molecular weight of 75.07, making it one of the lightest amino acids. The glycine molecule contains a nitrogen atom, two oxygens, two carbons and five (5) hydrogen atoms.

But considering the postulate that comets contain molecular amino acids, combined with evolution created goats, termites and cows, all of with produce methane which is found in the solar system, it seems we have a chicken and egg question, or we have to admit the methane is produced in natural space dust processes without regard for organic activity.

One alternate view of the origin of amino acids is the idea that boiling oceans on earth, primarily in the locality of volcanic vents provided the chemistry needed to transform molecular aldehydes into amino acids. However aldehydes have been confirmed on comets which has caused excitement in the panspermia community.

In the panspermic line of thought, bacteria may have carried DNA between galaxies. The excitement crescendos when these thinkers consider a young Earth during the late bombardment period with warm oceans awaiting the arrival of DNA.