Life Lately…

So It’s been a while.

Since my last post, Easter has come and gone, I’m this close to turning in my grad school application and the Mini-Marathon is two weeks from today. Also, the Blackhawks are in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, so I’m pretty happy. So here’s what’s been going on:

Cooking:

  • I’ve made some Pesto Pasta with red peppers and andouille sausage:

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  • A Goat Cheese appetizer from A Couple Cooks (on Easter!),

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  • With a Fancy Steak Dinner!

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Finally cooked correctly this time, to a delicious medium.

IMG_8837I used a slightly modified version of the Alton Brown Method.

1) I took out my steak and let it come to room temperature. Then I seasoned it with coarse sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.

2) Then I heated up my cast iron skillet at 450 in the oven for 20 minutes

3) I took it out of the oven (make sure to put on oven mitts!) and put it on the stove top over high heat.

4) Add the steak and sear for about a minute or two. Then flip over and put back into the 450 oven.

5) Then let it cook for 6-7 minutes for medium. (8 – 10 for medium well)

  • I’ve also made a quick version of red beans and rice.

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Ramblings:

  • So it’s technically 1-1 now, but Hawks are on their way to the Stanley Cup! Game 3 is pretty important.
  • I went to see Walk the Moon and they are FANTASTIC! I’m sooo happy that everyone knows them now (From Shut Up and Dance With Me).
  • IMG_8799I’ve also run through a downpour. It actually helped my breathing. So I’d now recommend running through the rain!IMG_8828
  • Game of Thrones is back! Drank some wine to celebrate.
  • IMG_8895I got a new fancy fitbit! It has heart rate monitoring, which I think is pretty great.

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  • And lastly, I now have plants! It’ll be fun trying to keep them alive over the coming months.

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Aerospace News:

  • SpaceX is so close to getting a reusable rocket.

It tipped over right after this vine. Apparently it had too much lateral velocity on landing. The day this works, rockets will get sooooo much cheaper. Maybe they’ll (NASA) put up a new space station because the cost is reduced XD. All while SpaceX works on Mars exploration.

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Science Sunday: Space Internet

Rocket Science Scale: 5

Let’s Set the Mood:

This article isn’t about the impending doom of how we are going to destroy the earth. It is about space satellites and how we plan on putting thousands upon thousands more up there.

We might be heading towards this. But it might be an okay thing depending on how we handle it.

We might be heading towards this. But it might be an okay thing depending on how we handle it.

This article was thought of after hearing that Elon Musk wanting to make a “Space Internet”. He’s opening up a Seattle branch of SpaceX to continue work on the the SpaceX rockets and possibly start a Space Internet.

It is an interesting concept. The plan is to launch a hundreds (the number changes depending on the source). It should allow faster internet speeds to everyone in the world including third world countries. The plan to allow those speeds is to launch the hundreds of satellites into very low earth orbit (about 750 miles above Earth) so they can communicate to each other faster. Or at least that’s Elon Musk’s plan.

To him the satellites would be the base for future communications to a Mar’s colony. Keep your eyes on the prize Elon.

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What was interesting to me is the recent attention on a Space Internet was because Musk announced it as his new pet project. But the Space Internet seems to actually be the idea of Greg Wyler.

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2015 Goals, Science Edition: Grad School and a SpaceX Vine.

So I’m going to start by saying, being out of school is great. I love my job, I love having free time after work hours and being able to do whatever I want during that free time (that usually ends up being laundry and dishes but it can be more fun things…. like Orphan Black marathons). So of course, I think instead of keeping my free time free, I’m probably going back to school. Specifically, I think I’m going back to get a Masters degree. So I was thinking that my Sunday Science posts might keep covering the big space topics of the week but during the weeks where nothing huge is happening I might share what I’m studying on the blog. That’s of course, if I do end up going back. I still haven’t applied, or decided where I want to go to study for my masters but this is something that I’ve been thinking of doing for some time. So warning, things might be getting more technical in Fall of 2015.

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Why am I going back again?

And on that note, I haven’t really looked into any big space event enough to write a full post about it. So instead, here’s a vine from the big space event of the week, where SpaceX was trying to land their rocket back down on the same platform. Close but no cigars.

Science Sunday: Orion, The First Step to Mars

Rocket Science Scale: 5 – 100% Rocket Science

So the NASA is finally getting back into the Space Race. After giving up the Shuttle, All was being privatized over in the U.S. SpaceX, Boeing and Sierra Nevada emerged as the new players in the drive for U.S. exploration.

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But then, our buddies in Russia started supporting revolutions we didn’t and then all of a sudden tensions were high. Our only way into space was the Russian Soyez and The U.S. really like depending on others. (I’m pretty sure our country lives on the philosophy, “Anything you can do, I CAN DO BETTER”). So NASA again passed the shuttle to private companies so they could focus on the science behind things.

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And NASA finally showed their hand. Meet Orion, the space exploration vehicle that will hold astronauts on missions beyond the Moon.

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It was tested this past Friday successfully and is has been admitted as the first steps towards exploration on Mars. How cool is that!??!?!

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Sunday Science: Goodnight Philae, Thanks for Landing on that Comet

Rocket Science Scale – 5, Actual Rocket Science

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It took ten years for this litter lander to catch up to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. But it finally landed on November 12th, 2014. And History was made.

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Rosetta-and-Philae

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The comet 67P was moving through space at 18km/s (40,000mph). The planning for Philae’s mission began over 25 years ago. But the European Space Agency (ESA) now has data on the makeup of the comet.

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Sunday Science: The Antares Rocket Explosion

Rocket Science Scale: 5

PHOTOGRAPH BY BRAD SCRIBER, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC

PHOTOGRAPH BY BRAD SCRIBER, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC

So the Antares rocket exploded during its launch to the International Space Station. One of the positives is that there was no one hurt during the explosion. But there was a huge loss of science and hardware during the explosion (apparently about 1/3 of the cargo on the rocket was science experiments).

I had two reactions to this news.

The first was OMG that’s so cool! That might sound like a weird reaction but engineers work on rockets for hundreds of thousands of man hours. Scientists and engineers check, then double check and then triple check their work when creating a rocket. In my engineering experience, tests usually go right. And in the Antares case this wasn’t a test. This was the third rocket they were sending up to the International Space Station for a resupply. The third. So they (And I keep saying they, they is Orbital Sciences the creators of the Antares rocket) were expecting a routine launch.

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Science Sunday (On a Monday): Sierra Nevada’s Dream Chaser/Thoughts on its Losing Proposal

Fun Fact: I am one of the few people who doesn’t LOVE Fall.

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I’m sorry. But I really don’t like fall.

Fall has some upsides:

– Return of Football and Hockey

– Hoodies

– Pretty Leaves

This is what happens when the bears lose their game that week.

This is what happens when the Bears lose their game that week.

And some pretty steep downsides:

– Allergies

– Can’t wear hoodies to work

– It gets cold outside

– Never-ending colds

This is about 1/4 of the tissues I went through over this weekend.

This is about 1/4 of the tissues I went through over this weekend.

So the point of all this fall talk is I’ve had a cold for almost four weeks and I’m really trying to get rid of it without seeing a doctor. And THAT  is why I’m posting my Sunday Science post on a Monday.

Anyway, back to SCIENCE!

So NASA recently selected two programs, Boeing’s CST-100 spacecraft and SpaceX’s Dragon V2 capsule to be the next human space flight providers. The spacecraft for both companies will fly to the ISS and need to be completed by 2017.

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Boeing CST-100 Capsule

SpaceX Dragon Capsule

SpaceX Dragon Capsule

However, the company Sierra Nevada Corp.’s (not the beer, it’s an aerospace company) proposal, the Dream Chaser, was rejected by NASA. They have now issued a formal protest to review NASA’s decision and has continued to market the Dream Chaser as an alternative solution.

Sierra Nevada's Dream Chaser, the little rocket in the middle.

Sierra Nevada’s Dream Chaser, the little rocket in the middle.

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