Eruption of the Tvashtar volcano on Jupiter’s moon Io, photographed by New Horizons, 1 March 2007, during its gravity-assist Jupiter flyby on its way to Pluto. I’ve brightened the pictures so that some detail on the darker part of Io is clearer.
The gif covers about 8 minutes of real time. If you count pixels and look up Io’s diameter, it looks like the plume’s “only” being thrown up to an altitude of 200km or so. But in fact the volcano is in the opposite hemisphere to the one we see here (albeit at a high latitude of about 67 degrees), and the plumes are reaching a height of over 300km.
There is much more detail about this volcano at the Gish Bar Times blog.
Scientists work on fusion rocket for Mars
NBC News: Researchers at the University of Washington say they’ve built all the pieces for a fusion-powered rocket system that could get a crew to Mars in 30 days.
“If we can pull off a fusion demonstration in a year, with hundreds of thousands of dollars … there might be a better, cheaper, faster path to using fusion in other applications,” John Slough, a research assistant professor of aeronautics and astronautics, told NBC News. …
Timetables for the advent of fusion energy applications have repeatedly shifted to the right, reviving the old joke that the dawn of the fusion age will always be 30 years away.
Photo: An artist’s conception shows a spacecraft powered by a fusion-driven rocket. (UW / MSNW)
Saturdays have become a veritable “this week in space” day around here lately, as last week we touched on the development of the solar-sail project “Sunjammer,” and this week brings exciting news on the Martian travel front. Of course, relying on fusion energy, this is still theoretical, and thus doen’t speak to anything assured — but isn’t it fun to daydream about a month-long jaunt to Mars anyhow?
I think I'm friendly. You should say hi.
Some of my interests (list has not been updated in years):
And some other stuff.
Things I've saved for later.