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Thursday, November 13, 2014

Space Technology Does Not Get Better Than The Rosetta Mission



GUARDIAN
Philae lander’s tight spot on comet prompts tough decisions for Esa
Rosetta mission controllers must decide whether to risk making lander hop from shadow of cliff blocking sunlight to its solar panels 



Ian Sample and Stuart Clark in Darmstadt
Thursday 13 November 2014 11.47 EST
The robotic lander that touched down on a comet on Wednesday came to rest on its side in the shadow of a cliff, according to the first data beamed home from the probe.
Pictures from cameras on board the European Space Agency’s Philae lander show the machine with one foot in the sky and lodged against a high cliff face that is blocking sunlight to its solar panels.
The precarious resting place means mission controllers are faced with some tough decisions over whether to try and nudge the spacecraft into a sunnier spot. If successful, that would allow Philae to fully recharge its batteries and do more science on the comet, but any sudden move could risk toppling the lander over, or worse, knock it off the comet completely.
The washing machine-sized lander was released by its Rosetta mother ship at 0835am GMT on Wednesday morning and touched down at a perfect spot on the comet’s surface. But when anchoring harpoons failed to fire, the probe bounced back off into space. So weak is the gravitational pull of the comet that Philae soared 1km into the sky and did not come down again until two hours later. “We made quite a leap,” said Stephan Ulamec, the Philae lander manager.
In the time it took the probe to land for the second time, the comet had rotated, bringing more treacherous terrain underneath. The spacecraft bounced a second time and finally came to a standstill on its side at what may be the rim of an enormous crater. Technically, the agency pulled off not only the first landing on a comet in history, but the second and third too.
“We bounced twice and stopped in a place we’ve not entirely located,” said Jean-Pierre Bibring, Philae’s lead scientist. Teams of scientists are now trying to work out where the probe is. What mission controllers do know is that they are not where they hoped to be. “We are exactly below a cliff, so we are in a shadow permanently,” Bibring added.
With most of Philae in the dark, the lander will receive only a fraction of the solar energy that Esa had hoped for. The spacecraft needs six or seven hours of sunlight a day but is expected to receive just one and a half. Though it can operate for 60 hours on primary batteries, the probe must then switch to its main batteries which need to be recharged through its solar arrays. If Philae’s batteries run out it will go into a hibernation mode until they have more power.
The spacecraft was designed with landing gear that could hop the probe around, but from its awkward position on its side the option is considered too risky.
Though caught in a tight spot, the Philae lander’s systems appear to be working well. The Rosetta spacecraft picked up the lander’s signal on Thursday morning and received the first images and more instrument data from the surface of the comet.

One of Philae’s major scientific goals is to analyse the comet for organic molecules. To do that, the lander must get samples from the comet into several different instruments, named Ptolemy, Cosac and Civa. There are two ways to do this: sniffing and drilling. Sniffing involves opening the instruments to allow molecules from the surface to drift inside. The instruments are already doing this and returning data.

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What makes the Rosetta mission so special?


Rosetta will be undertaking several ‘firsts’ in space exploration. It will be the first mission to orbit and land on a comet. That makes Rosetta one of the most complex and ambitious missions ever undertaken. Scientists had to plan in advance, in the greatest possible detail, a ten year trip through the Solar System. Approaching, orbiting, and landing on a comet require delicate and spectacular manoeuvres. The comet, 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, is a relatively small object, about 4 kilometres in diameter, moving at a speed as great as 135,000 kilometres per hour. We know very little about its actual surface properties – only when we get there will we be able to explore the surface in such detail that we can choose a safe landing scenario. Rosetta is very special because of the unique science it will perform. No other previous mission has had Rosetta’s potential to look back to the infant Solar System and investigate the role comets may have played in the beginnings of life on Earth.
Rosetta will be the first spacecraft to witness, at close proximity, how a comet changes as it approaches the increasing intensity of the Sun’s radiation. The comet develops the so-called ‘coma’ (essentially the comet’s atmosphere) and the two characteristic ion and dust tails. Rosetta’s lander will obtain the first images from a comet’s surface and make the first in-situ subsurface analysis of its composition.

It will also be the first mission to investigate a comet’s nucleus and environment over an extended period of time.

How did Rosetta reach comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, and how long did it take?

Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko loops around the Sun between the orbits of Jupiter and Earth, that is, between about 800 million and 186 million kilometres from the Sun. But rendezvousing with the comet required travelling a cumulative distance of over 6.4 billion kilometres. As no launcher was capable of directly injecting Rosetta into such an orbit, gravity assists were needed from four planetary flybys – one of Mars (2007) and three of Earth (2005, 2007 and 2009) – a long circuitous trip that took ten years to complete.

Why is it so important to study comets?

Comets are of great interest to scientists because, to our knowledge, they are the oldest, most primitive bodies in the Solar System, preserving the earliest record of material from the nebula out of which our Sun and planets were formed. Planets have gone through chemical transformations, but comets have remained almost unchanged. Furthermore, comets brought ‘volatile’ light elements to the planets and likely played an important role in forming oceans and atmospheres. Comets also carry complex organic molecules that may have been involved in the origin of life on Earth.

What do we presently know about how the Solar System formed?

The Solar System formed about 5 billion years ago when a cloud of gas and dust – called the ‘pre-solar nebula’ – started to collapse due to gravitational forces. A disc of leftover material made of the same gas and dust present in the primordial cloud formed around the still-forming Sun. After the Sun ‘ignited’ and began its life as star, most of the particles in this disc collided and stuck to one another, growing in size until they became the planets and the other Solar System bodies.

However, it took some time before the Solar System became the way it is now. About 4.5 billion years ago, it was still 'under construction', and interplanetary space was littered with conglomerates of dust particles. Many of these chunks hit the planets and were destroyed in the collision, but thousands of millions of them survived – they are the asteroids and comets we know today.

How will Rosetta be able to gauge the contribution comets made to the beginnings of life on Earth?

Previous studies by ESA’s Giotto spacecraft and ground-based observatories have shown that comets contain complex organic molecules. These are compounds that are rich in carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. Intriguingly, these are the elements that make up nucleic acids and amino acids, essential ingredients for life as we know it. Did life on Earth begin with the help of comet seeding? Although Rosetta may not give us a definitive answer, it will provide a wealth of information. For example, the mass spectrometers on the orbiter and the lander will analyse, more precisely than ever before, the kind of organic molecules present in the comet. Laboratory simulations of interstellar processes showed that such instruments can detect a variety of amino acids.

How will the mission determine whether comets provided some of the water present in today's oceans?


Rosetta will investigate this by analysing the isotopic abundances in the cometary ices. The isotopes of a certain chemical element are atoms of the same kind that differ slightly in weight. Deuterium, for example, is an isotope of hydrogen; it is also heavier than hydrogen. All the deuterium and hydrogen in the Universe was made just after the Big Bang, about 13.7 billion years ago, fixing the overall ratio between the two kinds of atoms. However, the ratio seen in water can vary from location to location. The chemical reactions involved in making ice in space lead to a higher or lower chance of a deuterium atom replacing one of the two hydrogen atoms in a water molecule, depending on the particular environmental conditions. Thus, by comparing the deuterium to hydrogen ratio found in the water in Earth's oceans with that in extraterrestrial objects, we can try to identify the origin of Earth’s water. For example, if the hydrogen-deuterium ratio in the ocean water is similar to that in the cometary ice, it will support the theory that a fraction of the Earth's water has its origin in space. ESA’s Herschel mission has already found a very similar deuterium-to-hydrogen ratio in comet Hartley-2.

How long will the Rosetta spacecraft operate?


Rosetta’s planned lifetime is about 12 years. The nominal mission ends in December 2015, after the comet reaches its closest point to the Sun (in August 2015) and starts heading back towards the outer Solar System.

How long will the lander operate on the comet nucleus?


The Rosetta lander, called Philae, will touch down on the comet's surface on 12 November 2014. The science observations will start immediately. During the first 2.5 days the first series of scientific measurements will be completed. During this phase the lander will operate on primary battery power. In a second phase that may last up to three months, a secondary set of observations will be conducted, using backup batteries that will be recharged by the energy from the solar cells on the lander. However, no one knows precisely how long the lander will survive on the comet.

Could activity on the comet's surface damage or destroy the lander?


Survival of the lander depends on a number of factors, such as power supply, temperature, or surface activity on the comet. For example, dust may cover the solar panels, preventing the battery from recharging. In any case, by March 2015, when the comet is closer to the Sun, it is likely that the lander will become too hot to operate.

What scientific instruments are on board the spacecraft and what will they do? 


Rosetta's goal is to examine the comet in great detail. The instruments on the Rosetta orbiter include several cameras, spectrometers, a number of sensors, and experiments that work at different wavelengths – infrared, ultraviolet, microwave, and radio. They will provide, among other things, very high-resolution images and information about the shape, density, temperature, and chemical composition of the comet. Rosetta’s instruments will analyze the gases and dust grains in the so-called ‘coma' that forms when the comet becomes active, as well as the interaction with the solar wind.

What scientific instruments are on board the lander and what function will they perform?


The 10 instruments on board the lander will do an on-the-spot analysis of the composition and structure of the comet’s surface and subsurface material. A drilling system will obtain samples down to 23 cm below the surface and will feed these to the spectrometers for analysis, such as to determine the chemical composition. Other instruments will measure properties such as near-surface strength, density, texture, porosity, ice phases and thermal properties. Microscopic studies of individual grains will tell us about the texture. In addition, instruments on the lander will study how the comet changes during the day-night cycle, and while it approaches the Sun.

How were the instruments selected?

The most important factors in the selection of each instrument were their expected scientific performance and their technical feasibility. How the instruments fitted together was another consideration, as well as the experience of the team proposing the instrument. This selection was done on the basis of the so-called 'Announcement of Opportunity' (AO) issued by ESA to the scientific community, which is basically an open competition. This AO defines the mission scientific objectives and requirements, and the scientific community had to be compliant with these when submitting their proposals.

How does Rosetta fit into the overall scheme of cometary exploration?


Europe has been a pioneer in exploring comets and asteroids. In 1986, ESA’s Giotto probe flew within 600 kilometres of the comet Halley, closer than any previous spacecraft, and sent back detailed images and data showing, among other things, that comets contain complex organic molecules. Giotto continued its successful journey and in 1992 flew within 200 km of the comet Grigg-Skjellerup, detecting its nucleus. The mission was the first to observe a comet nucleus and confirm theories suggesting that comets were not mere rubble piles or conglomerates of small fragments.

Giotto was part of the five-spacecraft Halley Armada, which also included Russia’s VEGA 1 and 2 spacecraft and two Japanese spacecraft, Susei and Sagigake. Like Giotto, these probes also visited Halley in 1986.

Among other comet missions were a trio of NASA probes: Deep Space 1, which flew by the comet Borelly in 2001; Stardust, which returned samples from the coma of Wild 2 in 2006 and later flew by Tempel 1; and Deep Impact, which in 2005 shot a massive block of copper into the nucleus of Tempel 1 before going on to fly by Hartley 2 and image the comet ISON. Another NASA mission, Contour, launched in Summer 2002, failed when it was incorrectly inserted into its interplanetary trajectory.

Missions have also visited asteroids. In 2005, Japan’s Hayabusa rendezvoused with and landed on the asteroid Itokawa. Six years later, another NASA mission, Dawn, explored the asteroid Vesta. Dawn is now en route to dwarf planet Ceres, which is the largest object in the Asteroid Belt.

What was known about the comet before Rosetta arrived there?

Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko orbits the Sun once every 6.6 years. This makes it a short-period comet.

Ground-based telescopes have observed 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko during almost all its appearances since its discovery in 1969. To acquire as much information as possible about Rosetta’s target comet, ESA implemented a rigorous ground and space-based observation programme of 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. These observations provided a fairly reliable estimate of the comet’s size – about 4 kilometers in diameter.

Where was 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko at the time of the rendezvous?


Rosetta met 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko when it was still in the cold regions of the Solar System 673 million kilometers from the Sun, when the comet and Rosetta were on their return journey back into the inner Solar System.

Was the comet active at the time of rendezvous?


As we expected, the comet was only showing minimal signs of activity at the time of rendezvous.
When comets get close to the Sun, the Sun’s heat 'activates' them. The frozen gases on and below the surface sublimate – they pass directly from the solid to the gaseous state – and the outflowing gas drags small dust grains with it into surrounding space. This creates an atmosphere around the nucleus, known as the coma, and generates a dust tail that streams out behind the comet along its orbit. Rosetta will therefore become the first spacecraft to witness at close quarters the development of a comet’s coma and subsequent tails.

When does 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko come closest to the Sun?


Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko last passed through its perihelion on 18 August 2002. Even at that point, when its brightness was at its maximum, it was impossible to see it with the naked eye. Only medium or large telescopes were able to observe it.

It will next pass through perihelion on 13 August 2015, 186 million kilometers from the Sun.

What is the gravity on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko's surface, compared with that on Earth?


Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is so small that its gravitational pull is several hundred thousand times weaker than on Earth. For this reason, the Rosetta lander will touch down at no more than a walking pace. It will need a harpoon to safely anchor it to the comet’s surface and prevent it from bouncing back into space.

Why is the comet called 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko?


67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is named after its discoverers, Klim Churyumov and Svetlana Gerasimenko, astronomers from Kiev who “spotted” the comet for the first time in 1969 on a photographic plate. The 'P' identifies short-period comets with a well-established orbit around the Sun and that take less than 200 years to complete a solar revolution. The number 67 refers to Churyumov-Gerasimenko's position in the list of catalogued periodic comets. The most famous, Halley, is designated 1P.

How many comets are there in the Solar System?


There are billions of comets in our Solar System, which are typically located in one of two regions. The most distant repository of comets is the Oort cloud, at the edge of the Solar System, 100,000 times more distant from the Sun than the Earth, and which is estimated to contain about 12 billion comets. Closer in, just beyond the orbit of Neptune, is the Kuiper belt, which also contains billions of comets and extends from 30 to 50 times the distance equivalent to the Sun-Earth separation (150 million km, or 1 AU).

Some comets escape from these regions and journey into the inner Solar System. Every year many new comets are discovered in this region, often ‘sungrazers’ spotted by ESA/NASA’s SOHO spacecraft. Sungrazers travel very close to the Sun, and are sometimes partially or completely destroyed in the encounter. Comet ISON is a well-known example of a sungrazing comet.

What is the difference between asteroids and comets?


Comets are typically nicknamed 'dirty ice-balls', whereas asteroids, or minor planets, are known, in very simple terms, as ‘rocks in space’. The size of asteroids typically ranges from a metre to several hundred kilometres across. One of the main differences is that asteroids do not usually contain ‘volatiles’ (substances that sublimate i.e. when heated they pass directly from the solid to the gaseous state). Therefore asteroids do not develop a tail or a coma when they approach the Sun. However, a recent class of object has been discovered in the main asteroid belt that are asteroids behaving like comets, sometimes suddenly sporting a dust tail. These are termed ‘main belt comets’ There is also good evidence that some asteroids are ‘ ead comets', comets that have lost their volatile materials after many approaches to the Sun.

Who are the Rosetta mission contractors?


Rosetta’s industrial team involves more than 50 contractors from 14 European countries and the United States. The prime spacecraft contractor – the company leading the entire industrial team – is Astrium Germany. Major subcontractors are Astrium UK (spacecraft platform), Astrium France (spacecraft avionics) and Alenia Spazio (assembly, integration and verification).

Who built Rosetta’s instrument and lander package?  


The orbiter’s scientific payload was provided by scientific consortia from institutes across Europe and the United States.

The lander is provided by a European consortium under the leadership of the German Aerospace Research Institute (DLR). Other members of the consortium are ESA and institutes from Austria, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, and the United Kingdom.

Was new technology developed for Rosetta and can it be reused for other ESA missions?


The solar cells in Rosetta's solar panels are based on a completely new technology, so-called Low-intensity Low Temperature Cells. Thanks to them, Rosetta is the first space mission to journey beyond the main asteroid belt relying solely on solar cells for power generation. Previous deep-space missions used nuclear RTGs (Radio isotope thermal generators). The new solar cells allow Rosetta to operate over 800 million kilometres from the Sun, where levels of sunlight are only 4% those on Earth. The technology will be available for future deep-space flights, such as ESA’s upcoming Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer.

Systems that control the temperature inside the spacecraft are another example of technological spinoffs from the Rosetta mission. When a spacecraft is near the Sun, overheating is a problem, and can be prevented by using radiators. But in the outer Solar System, the problem is keeping the spacecraft and its subsystems warm. The system devised for Rosetta employs several new techniques, including the installation of louvres over the radiators, to keep spacecraft hardware at proper operating temperatures.

Rosetta also includes a number of highly innovative subsystems, some of which have been reused in other ESA missions, including Mars and Venus Express.

How many people are involved in the Rosetta programme, and how many jobs has it created? 


About 2,000 people from industry, ESA and scientific institutions were involved in Rosetta's development. It is difficult to establish exactly how many new jobs were created, but Rosetta has certainly helped contribute to the development of the space sector both from the industrial and the scientific point of view.

Who will obtain data from Rosetta, and how will it be distributed?


Rosetta's Science Ground Segment will be responsible for collecting and distributing the scientific data. The unit will be based at the European Space Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany, and at the European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC) in Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid, Spain. It will be responsible for the collection of the scientific data received from the spacecraft and its distribution to the principal investigators.

The principal investigators head up the teams building the Rosetta instruments and will have the exclusive right to work with the data for six months. After this period, the data will be stored in ESA’s Planetary Science Archive and made freely available to the world’s scientific community.

How big is the spacecraft?


The spacecraft dimensions are 2.8 x 2.1 x 2.0 metres. There are two 14-metre-long solar panels with a total area of 64 square metres. From tip to tip, the spacecraft spans 32 metros.

Rosetta's total launch mass is 3,000 kilograms. The spacecraft carries 1,670 kilograms of propellant and the lander weighs 100 kilograms.

How will Rosetta be powered?
The spacecraft relies entirely on the energy provided by its innovative solar panels for all onboard instruments and subsystems.

What challenges did Rosetta face during its long trip through the Solar System?


Ensuring that the spacecraft could survive the hazards of travelling through deep space for more than 10 years, from the benign environment of near-Earth space to the frigid regions beyond the asteroid belt, was one of the principal challenges of the mission. Temperature control was particularly critical, and the spacecraft was put through stringent pre-launch tests in ESA’s environmental test facilities in the Netherlands to confirm its endurance. These tests involved heating the outside surfaces to more than 150°C and then cooling them to -180°C without damaging the instruments.

Is Rosetta pre-programmed or are commands sent from the ground?


Rosetta is operated from the ground. It was impossible to programme manoeuvres for the whole mission before the launch because this would have entailed adjustments at each stage of the journey. Ground commands are sent periodically to readjust the spacecraft’s trajectory. These take up to 50 minutes to reach the spacecraft, when it is farthest from the Earth.

How does the spacecraft deal with this long time lag?


To compensate for the delay, Rosetta is provided with built-in intelligence to look after itself. This is done by its on-board computers, whose tasks include data management and attitude and orbit control. In the event of problems during the lengthy cruise, experts added backup systems to ensure that the spacecraft could remain operational during critical mission phases. For example, to avoid losing power, the spacecraft automatically positions itself with the solar panels facing the Sun.

Why was it necessary to keep Rosetta in hibernation for 31 months?


To limit its consumption of power and fuel, and to minimise operating costs. During hibernation it was spinning once per minute and faced the Sun, so that its solar panels could receive as much sunlight as possible. Almost all of the electrical systems were switched off, with the exception of the radio receivers, command decoders and power supply.

How far did Rosetta get from the Earth and when did it reach this point?


In mid 2012 Rosetta recorded its maximum distance from the Sun and Earth – about 800 million kilometers and 1 billion kilometres, respectively.

What will happen with Rosetta once the mission is finished, and is an extension envisaged?


Rosetta's nominal mission will end in December 2015 after a total lifetime of 12 years. There could be a six-month extension provided there is fuel remaining, nominal activities are completed by the end of 2015 and additional funds are made available. An extended mission would permit scientists to study additional aspects of comet behaviour, including some that might entail higher risk. A decision on this will be taken in late 2014.

What can the lander tell us about comets that the orbiter cannot?
Using its complement of in-situ instruments, the lander will provide a nucleus-based cross-check for some of the orbiter’s remote measurements. It will also have the unique ability to drill down for samples from below the surface and analyse their mechanical properties on the spot. Furthermore, its camera system, especially the micro cameras, will be capable of imaging the landing site at a higher resolution than the high-resolution camera onboard the orbiter (which already has a resolution of 5 cm per pixel).

What is the difference in research significance between collecting samples from the comet’s tail (like Stardust did) and from the surface?


There are several distinct differences. First of all, samples collected from a comet’s coma do not contain volatiles and have already been transformed. The Stardust samples were slowed down by an aerogel (a kind of foam), causing them to heat up significantly from the sudden deceleration. As a result, the original properties of the volatiles were not preserved. But this was the only way they could be brought back to Earth and studied in a laboratory.

Samples studied by Rosetta’s lander will be fresh, containing volatiles that it will be possible to analyze in-situ (i.e. the samples will be heated in a controlled manner and the transformation analysed by lander instruments).

To summarise, Stardust collected processed material while Rosetta will allow us to analyse unprocessed fresh material still containing volatiles. The science performed by the two missions is thus complementary.

Will the orbiter be able to observe the comet from different angles?


Yes, Rosetta will orbit the nucleus in such a way that it can observe the comet from various angles and altitudes.

Will there be any possibility of adjusting the landing sequence once it is initiated?


No. Once the landing sequence has been defined (release speed, position for release etc.) and initiated, it will not be possible to adjust it. However, it should be recalled that the lander will be released at a height of about 22.5 kilometers from the centre of the comet and will touch down on the comet at walking speed, minimizing the risk of an incident.

What if the lander touches down on a very steep slope and drills itself into an awkward angle, or sinks into porous snow or some other soft material?


The lander is designed so that it can land on a slope of up to 30 degrees. The feet are equipped with large pads to allow the lander to touch down on a soft surface. If the surface is very soft, the lander’s feet may sink into it but sinking will eventually be stopped by the bulkiness of the lander’s body. In all scenarios, the lander is expected to be able to safely transmit its data.

Will the public be able to view high-resolution stereo images of the comet like they now see from Mars Express?


Rosetta will provide images with an even higher resolution than those from the HRSC camera on Mars Express. The difference, however, is that the HRSC was especially designed to take three-dimensional (stereo) images, while Rosetta will only be capable of building pseudo 3-D images by processing images from different viewing angles.

Did engineers have to make any changes to the Rosetta spacecraft or lander to adapt them to the new target comet?


A few minor modifications were made to the orbiter, including the addition of thermal blankets around the thrusters. The landing gear on the lander was modified to ensure a smooth touchdown on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, which has stronger gravity than the original target.

What happened to the spacecraft during the long launch delay?


The spacecraft remained in Kourou, French-Guiana and was kept in safe storage. The solar arrays and the High-Gain Antenna (HGA) were removed and the fuel was off-loaded. Various maintenance activities were carried out on the spacecraft and some instruments, and new software was uploaded to take into account the new target comet.

Does the Rosetta lander have a name?


Yes, the lander is called "Philae", the name of an island in the Nile region of Egypt. An obelisk found on Philae provided the French historian Jean-Francois Champollion with the final clues for deciphering the hieroglyphs on the Rosetta Stone – thus the mission name.

Were technical difficulties encountered during the development of the lander?


Yes, some problems arose during the design and development stage. The lander is really a mini-spacecraft and development of some systems, in particular the landing gear, proved to be more complicated than originally envisaged. Some of the lander experiments, notably the miniature gas analyzers  were also difficult to develop and build, and one was eventually dropped.

ESA set up a special lander task force, in cooperation with lander consortium leader DLR, to resolve these problems. Project management was reinforced, the agency contributed some additional funding and more experts from industry were brought in e.g. from Astrium. In other words, ESA adopted a proactive strategy and the problems were sorted out fairly quickly.

What was ESA’s role in the lander?


As a member of the DLR-led lander consortium  ESA contributed funding and manpower to the project.

Why is the lander described as a Rosetta experiment when it has ten instruments of its own?

Like the other Rosetta experiments, the lander has a single interface with the spacecraft. When the lander Announcement of Opportunity went out, it was agreed to consider the entire unit as a single instrument.

What is the total mission cost?


The total mission cost of Rosetta is close to 1.4 billion Euros of which the total Philae costs are 220 Million Euros (in 2014 economic conditions) including expenses for the one year launch delay. The mission cost covers development and construction of the spacecraft and all of its instruments, including the lander, together with launch and operations.

Though the total cost is high, this should be put in perspective. The figure is barely half the price of a modern submarine, or three Airbus 380 jumbo jets, and covers a period of almost 20 years, from the start of the project in 1996 through the end of the mission in 2015.

Why spend such a huge amount on public money on studying remote stones in space?


ESA’s task is to explore the unknown. In the case of Rosetta, scientists will be learning about comets, objects that have fascinated mankind for millennia. Comets are thought to be the most primitive objects in the Solar System, the building blocks from which the planets were made. So Rosetta will provide exciting new insights into how the planets (including Earth) were born and how life began.

It is important to consider that what may seem pure science ends up contributing to the store of human knowledge, and the advancement of knowledge always has relevance to everyday life, in the practical as well as the philosophical sense. Many technologies developed for space eventually lead to advances in other areas, though it is very difficult to predict when and how basic knowledge will result in practical benefits. If there had not been a need for particle physicists to share data, there would be no World Wide Web.

There are also direct spin-offs, like Rosetta’s advanced solar cell technology.
ESA is very careful to optimize the financial resources available in order to get the maximum profit, in terms of scientific results, technology and – last but not least – advances for European industry.

The educational fallout from major science endeavours should also not be underestimated. Missions like Rosetta are inspiring and fascinating, and help to get more young people interested in science, including many who may eventually choose a scientific career.

Previous missions like Giotto, Stardust and Deep Impact have already observed comets at close quarters. 

Why Rosetta?


Rosetta is a much more ambitious and advanced mission than Giotto or any of the previous NASA comet explorers. Its observation phase will last much longer and will not be limited to “snap-shots” from flybys.

Giotto obtained a mass of new information but its period of observation was limited to two short-lived flybys. Stardust captured some excellent black and white images and gathered samples of dust from the comet’s coma. However, it was not designed to provide information on the nature of the nucleus. Deep Impact filled in this missing gap but its instrument package included only cameras and a single infrared spectrometer, so most analysis of the comet’s composition had to be done from the ground.

Unlike these missions, Rosetta will include both an orbiter and a lander and be capable of investigating both the nucleus and the coma over a long period of time. It carries a much more advanced payload than any of its predecessors. The suite of eleven experiments on the orbiter will observe all aspects of the comet from close range over more than a year as it moves along its orbit towards the inner Solar System, permitting scientists to study the composition of the coma and nucleus in great detail. For example, they will be able to examine parent molecules on the comet’s surface that originated from the nucleus that have not yet been modified by the space environment, and survey the complex physical and chemical changes in the nucleus as it is warmed by the Sun.

The ten experiments on the lander, including spectrometers, high-resolution cameras and drill, will permit a more detailed comet investigation than has ever been done before.

Why was 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko selected as the target comet instead of Wirtanen?


Both 46P/Wirtanen and 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko are periodic comets with fairly similar orbits. This means that their return dates and orbits can be predicted with great accuracy. This enabled us to plan the Rosetta rendezvous mission with Wirtanen years in advance.

However, when we were unable to launch in January 2003, we had to weigh the various mission options, bearing in mind the trajectory, amount of fuel and energy required. We had to look for a comet that would be available when we wanted to launch Rosetta and several periodic comets – including Wirtanen – were identified as possible targets. The targets were selected on the basis of three main criteria: scientific return, technical risk to the spacecraft, and funding.

We eventually opted for 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, which Rosetta could reach with the same version of the Ariane 5 rocket . The other options, including a launch to Wirtanen in 2004, would have required a more powerful launch vehicle, either an Ariane 5 ECA or a Proton.

Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko is a larger comet than 46P/Wirtanen, with a nucleus about four kilometres across. It is also much more active when approaching the Sun, creating a greater dust hazard.

There were no major changes to the overall mission profile, although the rendezvous with the comet will now take place in 2014, two years later than planned. The revised mission also required three Earth flybys, instead of two initially foreseen.

When was the launch, and why the long launch delay?
Rosetta was launched on 2 March 2004 atop an Ariane 5 G+ rocket. It had initially been planned to send the probe into orbit in January 2003. However, the Ariane 5 was grounded following the inaugural failure of Arianespace’s new high payload Ariane 5 ECA, on 11 Dec 2002, depriving Rosetta of its launch opportunity to the comet Wirtanen.

What happened after Rosetta woke up from its long hibernation?


Rosetta entered deep space hibernation on 8 June 2011, waking up 31 months later on 20 January 2014, at 18:18 GMT.

At this stage, Rosetta was still 9 million km from its target. From February to April, engineers performed a checkout of the orbiter, the lander, and their respective payloads. The first images of the comet were taken at the end of March, from a distance of 5 million km. Between May and August a series of ten critical manoeuvres were executed to match the spacecraft’s velocity and trajectory with that of the comet. The spacecraft arrived at a distance of 100 km from the comet on 6 August 2014.

An extensive mapping and data-collection campaign took place over the following six weeks to determine a suitable landing site for the mission’s lander, Philae. At the same time, Rosetta moved to within 30 km of the comet, and later to 10 km for closer observation. A landing site located on the comet’s smaller lobe was selected, identified as ‘Site J’.

Landing is scheduled for 12 November. It will take about seven hours for Philae to descend to the surface of the comet, during which it will take images and make measurements of the comet’s environment. After touchdown, the initial battery lifetime of the lander is expected to be about 64 hours. Science measurements will include high-resolution images of the comet, in-situ measurements and extraction and analysis of subsurface samples. Solar illumination conditions and the amount of dust settling on the lander’s solar panels will determine the length of the long term science phase.

Meanwhile Rosetta continues its science mission, following the comet through its closest approach to the Sun on 13 August 2015, and beyond.

What were the critical remaining risks at this stage of the mission?


The primary risk involved the orbiter’s thrusters, which have to perform at lower pressure than planned because of a Reaction Control System leak that occurred in September 2006. Engineers were also concerned about the reaction wheels themselves, which have exhibited some noise. However, contingency testing has demonstrated that the system can be operated in a more efficient operating mode, reducing the wear. Moreover, new software has been developed to allow operation in hybrid mode, which would permit the spacecraft to operate with just two wheels.

All previous deep space probes have used RTGs [Radio-isotope Thermoelectric Generator]. 

Why did ESA choose not to use them for Rosetta?

ESA has not developed RTG (i.e. nuclear) technology, so the agency decided to develop solar cells that could fill the same function.

The Rosetta spacecraft is scheduled to last for almost 12 years, much of it spent in hibernation. 

What measures were taken to ensure that it can survive and operate properly under these conditions?

The spacecraft was thoroughly tested to ensure that it can survive long periods of hibernation and carries multiple computers that provide a sophisticated failure recognition and recovery capability. The data management system is highly autonomous with two independent computers, each comprising two separate interchangeable components.

We can upload new enhanced software at any time over the 12-year mission, and the software for each computer is interchangeable. This means that both the Data Management System and the Attitude and Orbit Control subsystem can be run on all processors. If the spacecraft is in serious trouble, it automatically goes into safe mode – with its solar arrays pointing at the Sun.

How will the mission teams – operations, scientists, management etc – be kept together and able to operate efficiently during such a long mission?

We won’t be able to keep the various teams together throughout the mission, so we are creating a database that contains complete information about the spacecraft. This will be available to ensure that the replacement staff has the necessary information about the mission.

The first eight months of the mission involved intensive activity that enabled everyone to become familiar with the spacecraft’s behaviour. Since then we have conducted regular training and communication activities, roughly once every 6-12 months. We also ensured adequate training before each manoeuvre.
A number of younger people have gradually been drafted into the instrument teams, including several principal scientific investigators, to ensure that the necessary “know-how” is passed on to new recruits.

Giotto was sent spinning and nearly destroyed by a dust particle, and other missions like Stardust also encountered considerable high-speed dust. What is to prevent the same thing happening to Rosetta?
Rosetta has very little shielding against dust. However, the relative velocities of the dust particles during the Giotto and Stardust encounters were much higher than will be the case with 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. Giotto flew past Comet Halley at about 70 km/s, and Stardust’s flyby speed was about 6 km/s. In contrast, Rosetta will be orbiting very slowly around the nucleus and the relative velocity of the dust from 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko will be much lower (perhaps 100 – 200 m/s), so we do not anticipate a problem, even when the comet becomes more active near the Sun. In addition, the onboard software operating the attitude sensors will be able to differentiate between dust and stars, so that the spacecraft does not track the dust particles.

Given the length of the journey, how could you be sure that the spacecraft/comet rendezvous would take place as planned?


Sophisticated and reliable computer models provided a high precision interplanetary trajectory for the comet rendezvous, and everything necessary was done to ensure that the mission proceeded as planned. When Rosetta neared the comet, we used optical navigation techniques, so it was practically impossible to miss the target.

No spacecraft has ever soft-landed on a comet. What are the risks during such a landing and how are they being minimized?


We have some idea of the risks, but no one knows for sure. This is one of the fascinating aspects of the mission. The density and surface roughness of the nucleus are not really known and its gravity is extremely low. We have tried to compensate for these factors in the design of the lander. There will be two harpoons to anchor it to the surface so that it can be reeled in like a fish on a line. There are also ice screws in each foot, which can be rotated to help to secure the spacecraft on the surface. The lander is also designed to stay upright on a slope of up to 30 degrees.

We will try to ensure an adequate margin of safety by mapping the surface of the nucleus at high resolution (a few cm) during the long orbital observation phase so that we know the size, density, surface roughness and other properties of the nucleus. This will enable us to select a suitable landing site.

Under which circumstances would the mission be considered a failure?


Obviously we are hoping and expecting that the lander will succeed in sending back the first images and in-situ measurements ever obtained from a comet nucleus. However, if it fails, the primary science mission can still continue – the most important, long-term scientific investigations will be done by the eleven experiments on the orbiter. These will enable us to map and characterize the nucleus in unprecedented detail, as well as enable us to gain remarkable new insights into the processes taking place, as the nucleus is warmed by the Sun and becomes increasingly active.

An error was detected in the Huygens probe after it was launched. 

What measures have you taken to ensure that all systems are properly tested and no similar errors slip through the net for Rosetta?


We have carried out end-to-end tests in order to validate the entire system, especially the lander. And although it is impossible to cater for all eventualities during such a long and complex mission these tests give us considerable confidence in the systems and spacecraft architecture developed for Rosetta.
Beagle 2 was lost at the outset of the Mars Express mission. What lessons were learned from that experience?
Rosetta has some similarities to Mars Express/Beagle 2, in particular the fact that it involves both an orbiter and a lander. As Mars Express has demonstrated, ESA has a successful record of delivering and operating spacecraft in deep space.

However, the Rosetta lander mission differs from Beagle 2 in a number of very important aspects. Beagle 2 followed an “uncontrolled” ballistic trajectory, which meant that it had to be protected by a heatshield against very high temperatures during descent. It also featured a complex landing system, including a parachute and airbags to cushion the impact on touchdown.
The Rosetta lander will not be deployed until the orbiter has mapped the surface of the comet’s nucleus in high resolution and a safe landing site has been chosen. It will be released about 22.5 km from the comet centre (about 20.5 km from the surface) and descent will be very slow and controlled, with a touchdown speed of perhaps one metre per second (less than walking speed).
And since the comet has no atmosphere, the lander will not require a heat shield  parachute or airbag, and there will be no concern about bad weather or high velocity winds.

Since this will be the first time that a soft landing on a comet has ever been attempted, there is always the possibility that some unexpected event may occur. However, the landing procedures have undergone thorough testing on Earth and every precaution has been taken to ensure that the lander remains upright and is able to anchor itself to the surface. The lander will be in communication with the orbiter (and Earth) through most of the descent. However, due to the communication time lag, it will not be possible to intervene in real time during the descent phase.

Were any scientific measurements undertaken during the flybys of Earth and Mars?


Yes, there were some observations during all four flybys. The imaging and plasma instruments were switched on – mainly for calibration – during the Earth flybys. The same instruments (VIRTIS, ALICE and OSIRIS) were turned on for scientific studies during at least a part of the Mars encounter, and the microwave instrument (MIRO) was used to sound the martian atmosphere.
Quite a few asteroids have now been observed at close range by various spacecraft. Why was an asteroid flyby included in the Rosetta mission?
There are still many things we do not know about asteroids, including their differing origins and composition, so we like to take advantage of every opportunity to study them. Rosetta flew by two asteroids in the main asteroid belt – 2867 Steins (in 2008) and 21 Lutetia (in 2010). It also observed an asteroid fragment, P/2010 A2 in 2010, in conjunction with the Hubble Space Telescope.
The Lutetia flyby showed the asteroid to have surprisingly high density and an unusual surface composition previously thought to exist only on large asteroids like Vesta. Steins is the first body in the main asteroid belt found to exhibit a loosely bound rubble-pile structure, and the first E-type asteroid to be observed close-up.

In addition to its scientific value, such information will be of considerable practical use. For example, it will contribute to ESA’s Space Situational program me  which is intended among other things to detect asteroids that pass dangerously close to Earth and help prepare countermeasures to prevent a possible collision.

What part, if any, is NASA playing in the Rosetta mission?


NASA is involved in four experiments – MIRO, ALICE, IES (part of IES-RPC) and part of ROSINA. NASA scientists are principal investigators on two of these (MIRO and ALICE). The MIRO (Microwave Instrument for the Rosetta Orbiter) instrument will be used to determine the comet’s abundance of some major gas species, surface outgassing rate and sub-surface temperature. It was also employed to measure the sub-surface temperatures of asteroids visited by Rosetta and to search for gas around them.

ALICE is an ultraviolet imaging spectrometer that will analyse gases in the coma and tail and measure the comet’s production rates of water, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. It will also provide information on the surface composition of the nucleus.

In addition, NASA’s Deep Space Network will provide communications and navigation backup during the mission.

Rosetta was originally going to be a sample return mission. Why was that scrapped?


The main reason was cost. NASA was involved during the early mission definition phase, but then pulled out, making sample return too ambitious for ESA to do alone. Although there is obviously no substitute for retrieving an actual sample for analysis back on Earth, Rosetta’sin situexploration is the next best thing. Moreover, Rosetta will permit scientists to study the evolution of the comet’s nucleus at close quarters, which a return mission could not do. And a sample return mission would not be able to carry as many instruments.
Rosetta was originally supposed to carry a British experiment called Berenice. Why was that experiment removed from the payload?
Britain initially intended to provide two gas analysers – one on the lander and one on the orbiter. This was a very ambitious commitment, particularly since these are very complex instruments. The development programme ran into technical difficulties and in the summer of 2000 it became clear that the UK team did not have the time or the resources to make both instruments. So it was decided to develop only the Ptolemy instrument on the lander.


When Galileo was subjected to a long launch postponement, unexpected problems arose after launch. 

What precautions were taken to prevent a similar event from happening to Rosetta?


All necessary steps were taken to prevent the launch delay from impacting on the mission. Rosetta was stored in a clean room at Kourou from the moment the decision was made to postpone the launch. We also took the precaution of removing some of the major hardware items, notably the High Gain Antenna (HGA), solar arrays and five of the instruments on the orbiter. Updated software was installed and all flight systems testing revalidated.

141 comments:

  1. By the way, India has joined the space age. They have some kind of probe going to or at and around Mars now.....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Meanwhile women are dying by the dozen, in "Health Camps".
      Botched mass sterilization at India camp kills 15

      Really Robert "Draft dodger" Peterson, even you would have to admit that India's priorities are skewed to nonsense. ....
      "Space Age" ... right you are

      Q&A: Why does India carry out mass sterilisations?
      The deaths of 15 women from a mass sterilisation programme in the state of Chhattisgarh in Central India has shone a spotlight on the country's population control plan. How effective is it? And how dangerous?


      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/india/11228049/QandA-Why-does-India-carry-out-mass-sterilisations.html

      Delete
    2. Space Aged butchery in India ...

      Technology does not get any better than that.
      Better get those folk into NATO, right away ... Not.

      Delete
    3. ... mass sterilisation is seen as a cheaper way to combat the problem of a rapidly-growing population – and less expensive than lessons in modern birth control.

      Delete
    4. Instead of targeting the men, a simple and less invasive procedure, the benighted Health Ministry targets women.
      Even after it was proven by experience that sterilising men was the most effective

      Mass sterilisations saw 10 million people – mostly men – affected in a period from 1975-77 which was termed "The Emergency". But India in 1976 had the best birth control record in its history.

      In the last year, four million people have been sterilised, and the UN says 37 per cent of the country's women have had the procedure.

      Sterilisation is the most popular form of birth control in India, and almost all those who have had the operation are women – even though the operation is more dangerous for them. A Times of India report from 2003 notes that men constitute just 2.1 per cent of the government sterilisations done in India, a number which is unlikely to have changed in the last decade.

      In Chhattisgarh, one of India's poorest states, the government had a target to carry out 165,000 female sterilisations and 26,000 male sterilisations in 2013-14, according to government documents.

      Some members of India's medical establishment and activists say targets make the sterilisation programme coercive.

      Delete
    5. Eugenics and Sterilization, real popular in NAZI Germany, too.

      Delete
    6. .

      At this point, I invoke Godwin's Law for this blog stream.

      .

      Delete
  2. Space Technology Does Not Get Better Than The Rosetta Mission

    Let's see, the anchors failed to fire ...
    The lander is in the wrong spot ...
    It is to 'dangerous' to 'bounce' it, again. The fourth attempt to get it right.

    If Space Tech does not get better than that, we best give it up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      Let's see, a ten year trip covering 6.4 billion km that required four planetary approaches to get the slingshot effect to actually get Rosetta to the comet, an object of less than 4 km in diameter made of ice and rock, and then having reached the comet, orbited it and finally landed on it while still working albeit not without some problems, well, I would say that is pretty nifty.

      .

      Delete
    2. but they didn't USE the Rat doctrine…

      SO Jack rat is pissed...

      Delete
    3. .

      As a result of an issue with the landing anchors on the Rosetta vehicle while attempting and accomplishing a feat unique in scientific and technological history some would say If Space Tech does not get better than that, we best give it up.

      Yet, this year, despite the millions of commercial and military flights flown each year, the president was forced to switch
      planes because Air Force One had mechanical problems, John Kerry was forced to fly commercial when his military plane had mechanical problems, and James Clapper was delayed a day and a half trying to get to NK to pick up hostages when his Air Force plane broke down.

      Flying? Perhaps, we best give it up.

      .

      .

      Delete
  3. .

    Jack HawkinsThu Nov 13, 01:19:00 PM EST

    Exceedingly wasteful, Legionnaire Q.

    You compare apples to oranges, but disregard the apricots.

    Between 1959 and 1973 NASA spent $23.6 billion on human spaceflight, exclusive of infrastructure and support, of which nearly $20 billion was for Apollo

    $20 billion 'not adjusted for inflation' dollars on an ego trip.



    I disagree.

    Who has not seen the various lists of practical scientific and technological advancements that have resulted either directly from or as spinoffs of the space program. There is no doubt some of the advances and products would have been eventually developed without the space program, but who can say what, where, or when? Few can argue with the advantage of a centralized group of scientists and technicians all working towards the same goal and overcoming something as complex as the exploration of space?

    Example of Benefits derived from the space program:

    https://www.sac.edu/AcademicProgs/ScienceMathHealth/Planetarium/Pages/Benefits-of-the-NASA-Space-Program.aspx

    The list is not all-inclusive. So far NASA has listed over 1500 'success stories' associated with their space program.

    As to your apples to oranges and apricots comment, again I disagree.

    Your post was about wasted money. There is nothing that is a bigger waste of money than war. Sometimes you can't avoid that waste but at other times you can. However, thinking that the end result will be different is rather pollyannish IMO, given recent history. Heck, I would rather spend the money on subsidies for alternate energy companies. At least there, there is the chance you will get a pay back.

    :o)

    .

    ReplyDelete
  4. I can’t even begin to explain the importance of Rosetta and enumerate the fantastic accomplishments of the chase to get to the comet and the almost impossible feat of establishing an orbit around a near no-gravity body which is so far away that there is a ninety minute delay between communications. I added to the post the basis for the claim that this may be man’s second greatest accomplishment in space since the first Sputnik flight.

    Enjoy it, if knowledge brings you joy and you have the intellectual curiosity to explore.

    ReplyDelete
  5. QuirkThu Nov 13, 03:35:00 PM EST
    .

    At this point, I invoke Godwin's Law for this blog stream.


    Since this stream has been soiled, I submit the following for examination by the literate, with the question, "What churches are being protected from Jewish attacks"?

    ALJAZEERA

    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2014/11/abbas-says-israel-igniting-religious-war-20141111133911922.html
    Abbas says Israel igniting 'religious war'
    Palestinian president condemns surge in visits to holy site by Jewish worshippers as Israeli soldiers kill demonstrator.


    "The Palestinians 'will defend Al-Aqsa and the churches against the settlers and extremists', Abbas said."

    I will do that one more time in English.

    "The Palestinians 'will defend Al-Aqsa and the churches against the settlers and extremists', Abbas said."

    I have no more to say on the subject. Abu Mazen said what Abu Mazen said.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why is it a problem if the churches are defended?

      Delete
    2. By the Moslems?

      LOL

      Like the "church of the nativity?"

      ash are you really his ignorant or are you JUST seeking to get a rise out people?

      Delete
    3. They say they want to protect these things and you guys get your panties in a twist - why? Do you think they should not be protected?

      Delete
    4. The question is not about what was said, the question is about where the quote was in the reference material provided.

      It was not there.
      Process, Legionnaire Q, we are speaking to process, not the content.
      Process, not content, is allen's preferred specialty.

      Capisce?

      Delete
    5. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
  6. If humanity had spent 1/10 of the resources on space exploration that it has wasted on war during the past 100 years, we would be several centuries ahead of our present state of development and would be reading news of our space colonies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If humanity had spent 1/1,000 of the resources on space exploration that it has wasted on killing Jews during the past 1500 years, we would be several hundred centuries ahead of our present state of development and would be reading news of our space colonies in the next galaxy over.

      Delete
  7. I'm all for space programs.

    Who knows, one of these fine days we might have to blow up or nudge one of these objects to save ourselves.

    In fact, from what I've read, it's a certainty we will be hit by a space object big enough to do real damage, only question is when.

    We have groups searching the skies for such objects now. They should be really well funded and all nations taking part.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Appropriate rockets and mechanisms developed, etc.

      Delete
    2. The SETI program - Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence - is still searching the skies too.

      http://www.seti.org/

      Delete
  8. What is "Occupation"Thu Nov 13, 04:08:00 PM EST

    but they didn't USE the Rat doctrine…

    SO Jack rat is pissed...


    :):):)

    Thanks for the laugh.

    IF they had used THE RAT DOCTRINE, the probe would never have been launched.......

    ReplyDelete
  9. Science

    comet
    ESA
    gallery
    Philae

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    Incredible New Photos Taken From the Surface of a Comet

    By Marcus Woo
    11.13.14 |
    12:28 pm |
    Permalink

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    1 / 19

    This incredible image was taken by the Philae lander of one of its legs resting on the comet's surface. ESA/Rosetta/Philae/CIVA

    Editor’s Note: We will update this gallery with new images as they become available.

    For millennia, people have seen comets come and go from afar, watching the mysterious, bright objects suddenly appear in the sky with long, spectacular tails. Now the Rosetta mission has provided an unprecedented close-up perspective. The spacecraft’s images of comet 67P/Guryumov-Gerasimenko’s surface reveal a rugged environment, covered with jagged rock and sharp cliffs. Now its lander, Philae, has snapped the first-ever photos from the surface of a comet.

    The photos in this gallery include those first shots, as well as photos taken of the lander’s descent by both Philae and Rosetta. Also included are some gorgeous images of the comet taken during Rosetta’s reconnaissance flyby at 10 kilometers above the surface.


    http://www.wired.com/2014/11/rosetta-philae-comet-surface-photos/

    ReplyDelete
  10. AshThu Nov 13, 07:13:00 PM EST
    Why is it a problem if the churches are defended?

    No churches are under attack by Jews. Dumb does not become you.

    ReplyDelete
  11. What is "Occupation"Thu Nov 13, 08:13:00 PM EST
    ash are you really his ignorant or are you JUST seeking to get a rise out people?

    WiO,
    I strongly suspect that Ash has had a course in business law. The second rule of business is that you cannot prosecute stupid. The first law is "find a scapegoat."

    Ash has found the scapegoat in the Jews. When cornered, he plays stupid. He is not a serious person and probably not a very good businessman since he is so obviously manipulative and blatantly evasive.

    I asked, "What churches are being attacked"? He knows that none are, but to admit this would make his brother Abu a liar. Therefore, he falls back on his dumb as a goat Muslim routine.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You seem to be lacking content in your argument Allen as evidenced by your descent to ad hominem.

      I have noticed in the press that there is an escalation in the dispute surrounding the wailing wall area. It appears to be a focal point in the religious portion of the dispute. I admit to not knowing much about the intricacies of this dispute and how deep the religious strands go for all involved. Certainly Christian Churches are in the area as well. There are settlers and extremists involved also it seems. You appear to have firm opinions about that particular dispute. I'm trying to figure out what is going on and that seems to have irked you. Too fucking bad that you can't come up with a coherent response.

      Delete
  12. Bob,

    We need to get off this planet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've been ready to go for years.......

      Delete
    2. Stephen Hawking agrees. We are going to need to get off this planet.

      Delete
    3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mNr12miDQv0

      :)

      Delete
  13. Bob OreilleThu Nov 13, 10:36:00 PM EST
    Stephen Hawking agrees. We are going to need to get off this planet.

    This is not the only world, and it is not man's destiny to be trapped upon it until extinction. It's down to the sea in ships.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We shall sail through the stars as Polynesians through the vast Pacific..........

      Delete
  14. If only the world had not spent so much money killing Jews ...

    Laughable ...

    Get off the planet !

    Even more comical than making space exploration, not war.
    Especially when spoken by those that promote war as the preferred policy.

    The three of them, Robert "Carpet Bomber" Peterson, 'Nuke the Rock' "O"rdure, and 'We'll End Civilization if We Don't Get Our Way' allen. All now promoting peace and tranquility and another exodus.

    Get a grip, fellas.
    We ain't goin' anywhere, other than back to California for another weekend of polo on the grass.

    Should be in the high 70 degree range ...

    {;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the response to your words would be "non-responsive".

      It seems you cannot grasp the cost in dollars and or human potential that the world has committed in destroying the Jewish people.

      Your gross indifference shows your lack of ability to grasp the severity of the statement....

      But my comment still stands, you still are non-responsive.

      Delete
    2. There is no severity to the statement.
      The amount spent 'killing Jews' is infinitesimal, in the 'Big Picture'.

      There never were enough "Jews" killed that the expense of it would make a sizable financial impact.

      Delete
    3. To think otherwise, comically ignorant.

      Delete
    4. only to one like you that hates Jews...

      you cannot see the crime, the waste, the cost?

      no, because you value the genocide of the Jews...

      Delete
    5. Let's get that quote, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.
      Should be easy for a real 'smart' fellow to do.

      Delete
    6. And for you, "O"rdure, the Jews are of no greater intrinsic value than the Usipetes or the Tencteri.
      No greater value than the Mohicans or the Palestinians.

      To think that the Jews had, or have, more value as human beings is an intensely bigoted and racist position for you to take.
      But taking is a Zionist core value, not Jewish, but Zionist.

      Delete
  15. Now this image, is of some really funny stuff

    I'll be laughing about it, all weekend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In addition to his other 'virtues' the fellow sure has a sense of humor.

      If only he'd go off to some park bench and laugh to himself "all weekend"........

      Delete
  16. .

    The question is not about what was said, the question is about where the quote was in the reference material provided.

    It was not there.
    Process, Legionnaire Q, we are speaking to process, not the content.
    Process, not content, is allen's preferred specialty.

    Capisce?


    Ode to a rat.

    I moved this response down here, rat, because of your inability to 'scroll up' (strange for someone who brags about his blogging ability). Of course, it is understandable you might think it unlikely anyone would bother responding to one of your posts, but still.

    Above, Ash and the Lobby were carrying on an ongoing argument about the fighting in Jerusalem (I think) and comments Abbas made about it. Why bring me into this? While I have noticed the running argument and that you sometimes jump into it, I have paid it little attention and to the best of my knowledge have never commented on this particular little contretemps.

    While I appreciate your attempts to keep me fully involved, I have to believe you have me confused with someone who really gives a shit.

    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, not giving a shit, but someone that keeps gnawing on a bone, with contention.

      If there was any meat on it, you could give a shit, after digesting.

      Delete
    2. .

      Once more, 'non-responsive.

      While you and I have been arguing per usual over the past few days, I have not been nor do I want to be dragged into your little spat with the Lobby and Ash over something Abbas said if that is what this is about. I haven't got a clue as to what the hell you have your panties twisted into a knot over this time.

      Capisce?

      .

      Delete
  17. Our self admitted war criminal, our self admitted professional asshole, is now also a self admitted moron:




    allenThu Nov 13, 09:36:00 AM EST

    You are a moron.
    allenThu Nov 13, 09:37:00 AM EST

    ... nothing personal, mind you ...
    Jack HawkinsThu Nov 13, 09:45:00 AM EST

    But, unlike you, allen, I am no liar.

    I do not fabricate quotes.
    Bob OreilleThu Nov 13, 11:07:00 AM EST

    The rat admits he is a moron !

    :) hehe
    .................

    We can now also call this fellow "Mr. Curiosity", with our tongue firmly in our cheek, for his lack of any desire to come to some real understanding of the nature of the physical universe.............our place in it..............or any awe before it................


    He'd rather go bowling, or, better yet, idiotically bash Jews.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson, that needs to be diagrammed for you.

      A lack of disagreement, with an opinion, is not the same as agreement with it.
      Do you really have a degree in English Lit?

      Delete
  18. Deuce has added a lot of material to the original post.

    Too tired to read through it right now but will first thing in the morning.

    Nothing to do tomorrow, thankfully.

    I find the whole topic fascinating.

    Best thread subject in a long time, to me.............


    Cheers !

    And Congratulations European Space Agency !!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Cascading failures ...

    Philae evidently bounced because a thruster failed—the thruster was meant to stabilize the craft during landing and push against the comet to hold it in place during anchoring. Harpoons that should have tethered Philae to the surface also failed to deploy.
    ...
    Philae is depending largely on its batteries for power. That power could run out as early as Saturday.
    ...
    Philae has a number of instruments designed to swing into place when deployed. If the craft were anchored as intended, with all three legs down, these swings wouldn't shift the probe's position. But without that anchoring, moving the instruments could move the lander, and that could shift Philae into a slightly sunnier spot.

    European Space Agency scientists are now considering their next move very carefully, since any of these movements could also topple the craft over completely.


    Off to ... Which star system are you guys relocating to?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      The lack of intellectual curiosity is astounding.

      Peering up at the night sky in awe and in fear before retreating to the comfort of his basement just as the ancients peered up from their cave entrance before retreating inside to the comfort of their fires.

      :o)

      .

      Delete
  20. KIRKUK: Iraqi forces retook the strategic northern town of Baiji, near the country's largest oil refinery, on Friday (Nov 14) after more than two weeks of fighting with the Islamic State group, officials said.

    Baiji, which had been out of government control for months, lies on the main highway to Iraq's IS-controlled second city Mosul, and its recapture further isolates militants in the city of Tikrit, to the south. It is the largest town to be recaptured by government forces since IS-led militants overran much of the country's Sunni Arab heartland in June, and their victory is one of the most significant in the conflict so far.

    "Iraqi forces were able to regain complete control of the town of Baiji," Ahmed al-Krayim, the head of the Salaheddin provincial council, told AFP. An army major general, a police colonel and an army major all confirmed to AFP that the Baiji was retaken. State television also reported that the town was back in government hands.

    "Iraqi forces are on their way to the Baiji refinery," north of the town, where security forces have held out against repeated militant . . . . . . .

    See Ya; Wouldn't Wanna Be Ya

    ReplyDelete
  21. Since the nested threads seem to cause some problems here is my response to Allen:






    AshFri Nov 14, 08:26:00 AM EST

    You seem to be lacking content in your argument Allen as evidenced by your descent to ad hominem.

    I have noticed in the press that there is an escalation in the dispute surrounding the wailing wall area. It appears to be a focal point in the religious portion of the dispute. I admit to not knowing much about the intricacies of this dispute and how deep the religious strands go for all involved. Certainly Christian Churches are in the area as well. There are settlers and extremists involved also it seems. You appear to have firm opinions about that particular dispute. I'm trying to figure out what is going on and that seems to have irked you. Too fucking bad that you can't come up with a coherent response.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ash, start by learning it's the WESTERN WALL not the "wailing wall"

      Delete
    2. And a mosque figures in the dispute as well does it not? Tell us more....

      Delete
    3. WiO, ah, I see, you insist it be called the Western Wall because it is the western wall of the mosque - ok, Western Wall it is ;)

      Delete
  22. Early evidence suggests that competition in the new Affordable Care Act marketplaces is working. Health insurance premiums in major cities around the country are barely rising.

    That’s the conclusion of two studies of data about newly public insurance rates. One, from the Kaiser Family Foundation, a health research group, looked at 49 cities and found that prices for a popular type of plan are actually going down, on average. A second, from the actuarial firm Wakely Consulting Group, looked at the largest county in each of the 34 states with marketplaces run by the federal government and found an average rate increase of zero.


    Decreases in the price of health insurance are basically unheard-of. The individual insurance market that these new marketplaces replaced experienced annual increases of 10 percent in recent years. In the employer market, premiums went up by a record-low rate of 3 percent this year, but even that increase can’t compare with what’s happening in many . . . . . . . . .

    The Upshot

    ReplyDelete
  23. Jack HawkinsFri Nov 14, 06:29:00 AM EST
    And for you, "O"rdure, the Jews are of no greater intrinsic value than the Usipetes or the Tencteri.
    No greater value than the Mohicans or the Palestinians.

    To think that the Jews had, or have, more value as human beings is an intensely bigoted and racist position for you to take.
    But taking is a Zionist core value, not Jewish, but Zionist.




    Interesting comment by Jack...

    But completely non-responsive to the point I made.

    That's what jack does, change the argument rather than answer the question....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the response to your words would be "non-responsive".

      It seems you cannot grasp the cost in dollars and or human potential that the world has committed in destroying the Jewish people.

      Your gross indifference shows your lack of ability to grasp the severity of the statement....

      But my comment still stands, you still are non-responsive.

      Delete
    2. As long as you respond "O"rdure, the objective is met.

      Delete
    3. If Bib's Social Media commando did not respond, I'd be off target.

      But as long as your team is on the field, responding ...
      Then the strikes are on time, on target.

      That is one measure of success.
      261,675 views is another.
      'desert rat' only got to 17,000.

      Thank you for your support.

      {;-)

      Delete
  24. http://washington.cbslocal.com/2014/11/14/dempsey-were-certainly-considering-dispatching-us-forces-to-fight-with-iraqi-troops-against-isis/

    Dempsey: ‘We’re Certainly Considering’ Dispatching US Forces To Fight With Iraqi Troops Against ISIS

    ReplyDelete
  25. American wars in the Middle East — and really, American foreign policy in general — aren't exactly popular in the Arab world. But the new military campaign against ISIS appears to be a rare exception. According to a just-released poll of Arab residents in eight different countries, Obama's new war in Iraq and Syria enjoys surprising support from the region's Arab residents.

    The poll comes from the Arab Center for Research and Policy Studies, which asked 4,800 randomly selected people from around the Arab world about US foreign policy and ISIS.




    When asked "how would you evaluate the foreign policy of the United States towards the Arab region," 73 percent of respondents answered negative or "negative to some extent." This makes the broad support for the anti-ISIS campaign even more surprising. When asked if they supported the US-led airstrikes against ISIS, a majority in every single country said they support the campaign:

    Obama's War

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      Translation from the Arabic:

      The US? Hate em.

      The US relative to IS? Love em.

      .

      Delete
  26. The US military has stated, from just about the beginning of the anti-ISIS campaign that they were making contingency plans for US troops returning to Iraq.

    The Iraqi have been even more adamant ... Foreign troops are not going to be allowed into Iraq, to quell the insurrection.
    Another US invasion of Iraq, not in the cards.

    The US's ability to 'arm twist' the Iraqi into 'asking' for US troops ... not what it once was.
    Not delivering the weapons systems as promised, F16s, helicopters and such has greatly diminished US leverage in Iraq.

    The US military may be planning on invading Iraq ... but don't hold your breath in anticipation of that event.

    ReplyDelete
  27. This news will certainly 'make a difference', or not.

    LONDON: Britons travelling to Syria or Iraq to fight with ISIS will be banned from returning to UK for two years.

    David Cameron warns ISIS' British jihadists

    ReplyDelete
  28. While it does seem that the "Rat Doctrine" is working, in Iraq.

    Nov 14 (Reuters) - Iraqi government forces got within a kilometre (half a mile) of the country's biggest refinery on Friday, the closest they have come to breaking an Islamic State siege of the facility during months of fighting, two army officers and a witness said.

    Fighting raged in a village between the complex and the nearby town of Baiji, near a deserted area believed to contain roadside bombs planted by the militants that has been preventing an advance, they said.

    A witness said security forces had crossed a bridge close to the refinery, 200 km north of the capital.

    "Daesh (Islamic State) militants are escaping to the direction of a river. Airplanes are targeting them," said an army captain.


    http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/11/14/mideast-crisis-iraq-refinery-idINL6N0T432E20141114

    Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi sacked 26 military commanders this week for corruption and incompetence in the aftermath of Islamic State advance.

    The Iraqi government is not a model of efficiency, but they are making progress.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Also keep up on Rosetta here -

    http://www.nasa.gov/rosetta/news/#.VGYOqMmrzTA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. European Space Agency's Official Site -

      http://www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Space_Science/Rosetta

      Delete
    2. >>>Why spend such a huge amount on public money on studying remote stones in space?

      
ESA’s task is to explore the unknown. In the case of Rosetta, scientists will be learning about comets, objects that have fascinated mankind for millennia. Comets are thought to be the most primitive objects in the Solar System, the building blocks from which the planets were made. So Rosetta will provide exciting new insights into how the planets (including Earth) were born and how life began.

      It is important to consider that what may seem pure science ends up contributing to the store of human knowledge, and the advancement of knowledge always has relevance to everyday life, in the practical as well as the philosophical sense. Many technologies developed for space eventually lead to advances in other areas, though it is very difficult to predict when and how basic knowledge will result in practical benefits. If there had not been a need for particle physicists to share data, there would be no World Wide Web.

      There are also direct spin-offs, like Rosetta’s advanced solar cell technology.
      ESA is very careful to optimize the financial resources available in order to get the maximum profit, in terms of scientific results, technology and – last but not least – advances for European industry.

      The educational fallout from major science endeavours should also not be underestimated. Missions like Rosetta are inspiring and fascinating, and help to get more young people interested in science, including many who may eventually choose a scientific career.

      Previous missions like Giotto, Stardust and Deep Impact have already observed comets at close quarters.<<<


      Without the urge to explore the unknown, we'd all still be in Europe, Asia, Africa.

      Those ships from Spain, England, France would have never left port.......

      Bless the 'wandering gene' - most people have some............

      Delete
    3. My wife has some wandering genes.............I suspect it's why she always wants to take off on some godawful back road in Nevada......saying, "let's see what's down this way"..................:)

      Delete
    4. >>>How will Rosetta be able to gauge the contribution comets made to the beginnings of life on Earth?


      Previous studies by ESA’s Giotto spacecraft and ground-based observatories have shown that comets contain complex organic molecules. These are compounds that are rich in carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. Intriguingly, these are the elements that make up nucleic acids and amino acids, essential ingredients for life as we know it. Did life on Earth begin with the help of comet seeding? Although Rosetta may not give us a definitive answer, it will provide a wealth of information. For example, the mass spectrometers on the orbiter and the lander will analyse, more precisely than ever before, the kind of organic molecules present in the comet. Laboratory simulations of interstellar processes showed that such instruments can detect a variety of amino acids.<<<

      Some - at least one - here may not be interested in how life 'began' but the rest of us find it fascinating.

      I have the idea - not my own, but gotten from others - that, as the laws of physics - to the best of our current knowledge - are the same 'way out there' as they are 'here', the laws of biology are likely the same 'way out there' as they are here too.

      Thus, many feel that if and when we ever 'meet the alien's' their development - however advanced - is likely to have gone through some stages much like ours.......

      Delete
    5. Now Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson is comparing the Atlantic Ocean to ...

      The void of deep space ...

      Seems that while dodging the military draft at the University of Washington, he avoided science classes, as well.

      Delete

    6. >>>>Rosetta was originally going to be a sample return mission. Why was that scrapped?


      The main reason was cost. NASA was involved during the early mission definition phase, but then pulled out, making sample return too ambitious for ESA to do alone. Although there is obviously no substitute for retrieving an actual sample for analysis back on Earth, Rosetta’sin situexploration is the next best thing. Moreover, Rosetta will permit scientists to study the evolution of the comet’s nucleus at close quarters, which a return mission could not do. And a sample return mission would not be able to carry as many instruments.
      Rosetta was originally supposed to carry a British experiment called Berenice. Why was that experiment removed from the payload?
Britain initially intended to provide two gas analysers – one on the lander and one on the orbiter. This was a very ambitious commitment, particularly since these are very complex instruments. The development programme ran into technical difficulties and in the summer of 2000 it became clear that the UK team did not have the time or the resources to make both instruments. So it was decided to develop only the Ptolemy instrument on the lander.


      When Galileo was subjected to a long launch postponement, unexpected problems arose after launch. <<<<

      NASA is even worse these days, being given the 'mission' of outreach to Moslems, of all absurdities, by the Obama Administration.

      Delete
    7. Explore the 'unknown', there were people living in all of the 'unknown' locales, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.
      They were not 'unknown' at all.

      The English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Swedes, Dutch and Italians were not on 'Voyages of Discovery', they were on 'Campaigns of Conquest'.

      Even if life came to the Earth on comets, it would not explain the creation of life, "Draft Dodger".

      Your views are so 'Terracentric' that it's comical.

      Delete
    8. >>>How will the mission determine whether comets provided some of the water present in today's oceans?


      Rosetta will investigate this by analysing the isotopic abundances in the cometary ices. The isotopes of a certain chemical element are atoms of the same kind that differ slightly in weight. Deuterium, for example, is an isotope of hydrogen; it is also heavier than hydrogen. All the deuterium and hydrogen in the Universe was made just after the Big Bang, about 13.7 billion years ago, fixing the overall ratio between the two kinds of atoms. However, the ratio seen in water can vary from location to location. The chemical reactions involved in making ice in space lead to a higher or lower chance of a deuterium atom replacing one of the two hydrogen atoms in a water molecule, depending on the particular environmental conditions. Thus, by comparing the deuterium to hydrogen ratio found in the water in Earth's oceans with that in extraterrestrial objects, we can try to identify the origin of Earth’s water. For example, if the hydrogen-deuterium ratio in the ocean water is similar to that in the cometary ice, it will support the theory that a fraction of the Earth's water has its origin in space. ESA’s Herschel mission has already found a very similar deuterium-to-hydrogen ratio in comet Hartley-2.<<<

      Since we are all some 70 some % or so water, some part of us may have come from ............comets !

      Delete
    9. Where did the comets come from, Robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson?

      How is it that the moon older than the solar system, older than those comets?
      Where did it come from, how did it get here, who brought it and put it into orbit around the Earth?

      Delete
  30. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Has ISIS peaked? Terror group suffers setbacks in Iraq

    (CNN) -- Is the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) finally beginning to feel the pressure?  The first signs are emerging that a combination of coalition airstrikes and more assertive Iraqi and Kurdish forces are forcing ISIS to change its behavior, and inflicting serious losses of both territory and fighters.
    ...
    ... there are signs ISIS is under stress, especially in Iraq, with its lines of communication and resupply disrupted in some areas, key figures targeted in airstrikes, and sources of revenue under threat.

    Lauren Squires, a researcher with the Institute for the Study of War who has followed the group closely, says: "ISIS is facing the unhappy experience of losing the element of surprise."

    "Mosul fell in June because no one thought Mosul would fall ... ISIS has capitalized on the Iraqi and Western governments not expecting it to be as quick and aggressive as it has been," Squires told CNN.

    Now the group's strengths and weaknesses are perhaps better understood.

    U.S. President Barack Obama said in an interview at the weekend that the next phase of the campaign against ISIS was imminent. "The airstrikes have been very effective in degrading ISIL's capabilities and slowing the advance that they were making," he told CBS's "Face the Nation."

    "Now what we need is ground troops, Iraqi ground troops that can start pushing them back," he said, supported by an expansion in the U.S. training and advising mission.



    The "Rat Doctrine" taking hold, gaining ground, successfully stifling the Zionist/Wahhabi plan to fragment Iraq.

    ReplyDelete
  32. More evidence of "Rat Doctrine" success ...
    This time in Syria !

    Looks like the Israeli will not get the opportunity to accept al-Qeada operative ruling Syria, not soon anyway.

    US air strikes 'help Kurdish troops push back Isil'

    THE Kurdish defenders of the besieged town of Kobane claim to be pushing back their Isil jihadi attackers with the help of US air strikes and aid drops.

    The militia leading the fight against Isil, the YPG, took a key supply road, according to a co-leader of the YPG's political arm, the PYD.

    "A group of the YPG is now controlling the road linking the town and Halanja in southern Kobane, which was previously under the control of Isil," the leader, Asia Abdullah, said.

    "There is some advance inside the town, especially the eastern zone."

    A combination of air strikes, an arms drop to the YPG, and the arrival of reinforcements from the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga and some Free Syrian Army rebels, has managed to hold the rapid Isil advance.

    Figures released yesterday by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group, said that US strikes had killed around 750 Isil fighters in the country, of which hundreds are known to have been involved in the fighting around Kobane.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Rat Doctrine isn't going to retake Mosul.

      The Rat Doctrine is useless.

      Delete
    2. Wait and watch, Anonymous, wait and watch ...

      I do think you will be proven to be wrong, one more time.

      Delete


    3. allenThu Nov 13, 09:36:00 AM EST

      You are a moron.
      allenThu Nov 13, 09:37:00 AM EST

      ... nothing personal, mind you ...
      Jack HawkinsThu Nov 13, 09:45:00 AM EST

      But, unlike you, allen, I am no liar.

      I do not fabricate quotes.
      Bob OreilleThu Nov 13, 11:07:00 AM EST

      The rat admits he is a moron !

      :) hehe

      Delete
    4. There were many Anonymous contributors who believed that Baghdad was about to fall, that the Daesh were on the outskirts of the Iraqi capital, that the US installations there would soon be overrun.

      Did not happen, did it?

      Pessimism, it is such a negative thing to have eating at your soul.
      Try to find your 'happy spot', Anonymous, it will do you a world of good.

      Delete
    5. Only an English Lit drop out would conflate an omission with an admission.

      Delete
  33. HAGEL SEEKING CHANGES IN MANAGEMENT OF NUKES

    The defense secretary’s action follows stories by the AP that revealed problems in management, morale, security and safety in America’s nuclear force.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Think mankind will take those nukes on those voyages of discovery to the far away stars?

      Delete
  34. http://news.yahoo.com/eu-allies-alarmed-hungarys-kremlin-drift-133753176.html
    EU allies alarmed at Hungary's Kremlin drift

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not being tied to the feckless Euro does give the Hungarians room to maneuver, in their own national interest.

      Delete
    2. A degree of Independence from Germany that many in the EU would not only find alarming, but envy.

      Delete
    3. BUDAPEST—Hungary's central bank said Wednesday it will use part of the country's foreign-exchange reserves to help rid households of expensive foreign-currency loans and avoid a sharp weakening of the Hungarian forint.

      The central bank will sell commercial banks the money they will need to convert foreign-currency household loans into the forint and to compensate households for loan charges which the government has deemed as unfair. Thus banks won't be forced to tap the currency market and weaken the local currency.

      "It is very important that the forex loan conversion and charge compensation should take place without any tangible weakening of the forint," Marton Nagy, managing director of the central bank, said at a news conference.

      Hungary is grappling with the impact of banks' prolific lending in foreign currencies before the 2008 financial crisis. Mortgages in Swiss francs were hugely popular since they were much cheaper than local-currency loans. Many households are now in dire straits, however, after their mortgage payments have risen sharply as a result of the appreciation of the Swiss franc against the Hungarian forint.

      Nonperforming loans accounted for around 19% of Hungarian banks' loans to households at the end of June.

      The central bank will initially provide €3 billion ($3.86 billion) to commercial banks out of Hungary's end-August foreign-currency reserves of €35.54 billion to pay compensation for loan charges the government has deemed as unfair.

      The government has estimated that banks will need to return nearly 1 trillion forints ($4.13 billion) to households in compensation for these charges.

      Commercial banks will need additional funds to convert the household loans into forints. "The central bank supports a one-step conversion of the forex loans into forints," Mr. Nagy added. The National Bank of Hungary on Tuesday approved the conversion funds.

      Commercial banks will need between €9 billion and €11 billion to convert the loans into forints, depending on future government decisions, Mr. Nagy said


      Stepping further from integration with Germany and France, maintaining the own economic independence, that could be considered alarming to the Banksters of the EU.

      Delete
    4. http://online.wsj.com/articles/hungarys-central-bank-to-use-reserves-to-help-rid-households-of-foreign-currency-loans-1411557512

      Delete
  35. Will the super secret spy network go with mankind on is voyages of discovery / conquest in the stars ...

    Americans’ Cellphones Targeted in Secret U.S. Spy Program

    Devices on Planes that Mimic Cellphone Towers Used to Target Criminals, but Also Sift Through Thousands of Other Phones

    ReplyDelete

  36. Turning away from an interesting subject back to the normal shit here, rat shit is obviously on his meth this morning.

    Just look at his scatterbrained posts above.....

    Cheers !

    Congratulations European Space Agency !!

    later.......

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Robert, why do you not want to discuss the Earth conquering Mars, the moons of Saturn ...
      Are the technological challenges of putting military bases on those far away locales to great for you to comprehend?

      Should we take our nukes with US, as we explore the stars?
      Or go in Peace, for all Mankind.

      Delete
  37. Without incessant gnawing a rodent's incisors will grow into its braincase.

    Hmm

    ReplyDelete
  38. Jack HawkinsFri Nov 14, 09:30:00 AM EST
    As long as you respond "O"rdure, the objective is met.

    So Jack get's off on seeing his name in the screen…

    negative attention disorder.

    like a 5 year old screaming mommy… mommy mommy mommy mommy mommy….

    just to get a reaction…

    bad behavior for a 5 year old, just down right sick for an adult.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You continue to respond, continue to validate the effectiveness of the posts...

      Stay the Course !

      Thank you for your support

      {;-)

      Delete
    2. Reactions from the readers, that is what it is all about, "O"rdure.

      Writing that stimulates ...

      Your responses validate the mandate.

      Delete
    3. Your "writing" stimulates the same as stepping in cow shit...

      Delete
  39. http://news.yahoo.com/jordan-israel-meet-over-tensions-jerusalem-141732754--politics.html
    US: Commitments made to reduce Jerusalem tensions

    ... restriction of Jewish visits ... no moving of the mouth (an attack on Islam) ... Bravo! John Kerry and Bibi...

    ReplyDelete
  40. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Israel rejects cooperation with Schabas probe into Gaza war
    International-i24news-Nov 12, 2014

    Israel bars U.N. investigators of Gaza operation
    Opinion-Jewish Telegraphic Agency-Nov 13, 2014

    Israel Says Will Not Cooperate With UN Gaza Investigation
    In-Depth-Huffington Post-Nov 12, 2014

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Israel rejects cooperation with Schabas probe into Gaza war

      Canadian lawyer barred from entering the country; Israel slams 'obsessive hostility' of UN body

      Israel says it will not cooperate with the United Nations probe into the 50 day-long summer war in the Gaza Strip, as it harbors grave misgivings regarding the commission's impartiality, the country's Foreign Ministry announced on Wednesday.

      Israel is barring the commission's head, Canadian human rights lawyer William Schabas – a public and vocal critic of Israel's policies – from entering the country. Schabas, along with other UN officials, has arrived in Amman, Jordan and is awaiting entry visas to Israel in order to travel to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip via Israel.

      http://www.i24news.tv/en/news/israel/diplomacy-defense/50744-141112-israel-officially-rejects-cooperation-with-schabas-probe-into-gaza-war

      Delete
    2. has arrived in Amman, Jordan and is awaiting entry visas to Israel in order to travel to the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip via Israel.


      go thru Egypt…

      Delete

  42. Israel bans Norwegian doctor from Gaza for life ...
    http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/1.626441

    ReplyDelete
  43. Golly, will you look at that ...

    Israel does control Gaza, prima facie & de facto.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hardly Jack, Israel refused to allow the good Doctor to use Israel as his travel highway. The good doctor can go thru egypt.

      If Israel "controlled" gaza? There would be no tunnels, hamas, or rockets…

      Once again you take a small and unimportant factoid and blow it up to a mountain of nonsense.

      Please go and play your Polo…

      tell us about your successful screenplay sales to Sly… IF he doesn't have security remove you 1st

      Delete
    2. A group of Palestinians stuck on the Egyptian side of the Rafah crossing into Gaza on Thursday called upon Egypt to open the crossing after three weeks of closure in order to allow them to return to the Gaza Strip.

      "We have been stuck in Egypt for 20 days, but no one has helped us or even talks about us," Talal Salim, one of those stuck at the crossing, told Ma'an.

      The Palestinians stuck at the border are victims of the Egyptian government's policies regarding the crossing's opening hours, which can be sealed shut for weeks at a time with little notice.

      The most recent closure came after a bomb hit Egyptian soldiers in el-Arish, 50 kilometers (31 miles) west of the Gaza border. The crossing was closed in response, despite the lack of a clear relationship between the incident and Gaza.

      The Deputy Minister of the Interior in Gaza, Kamel Abu Madi, called upon Egyptian authorities to open the Rafah crossing permanently, arguing that "there is no excuse for its closure."



      Egypt, the world's largest Arab nation…

      Shares a border with the territory is used to control….

      A group of Palestinians stuck on the Egyptian side of the Rafah crossing into Gaza on Thursday called upon Egypt to open the crossing after three weeks of closure in order to allow them to return to the Gaza Strip.

      "We have been stuck in Egypt for 20 days, but no one has helped us or even talks about us," Talal Salim, one of those stuck at the crossing, told Ma'an.

      The Palestinians stuck at the border are victims of the Egyptian government's policies regarding the crossing's opening hours, which can be sealed shut for weeks at a time with little notice.

      The most recent closure came after a bomb hit Egyptian soldiers in el-Arish, 50 kilometers (31 miles) west of the Gaza border. The crossing was closed in response, despite the lack of a clear relationship between the incident and Gaza.

      The Deputy Minister of the Interior in Gaza, Kamel Abu Madi, called upon Egyptian authorities to open the Rafah crossing permanently, arguing that "there is no excuse for its closure."

      So I say, look at a map….

      Notice that big huge nation to the LEFT go Gaza? Notice that city divided in two call Rafah?

      Notice who controls that border?????


      hardie har har….

      Delete
    3. Do not care what you write ...
      since I don't read more than three lines, first two, last one
      ... just keep responding ...

      That's the ticket

      Stay the Course !

      Delete
    4. mommy mommy mommy mommy mommmmmmmy I don't care what you say......

      Delete
    5. Jack HawkinsFri Nov 14, 12:06:00 PM EST
      Do not care what you write ...
      since I don't read more than three lines, first two, last one
      ... just keep responding …

      I call BULLSHIT…

      jack reads every word of every post…

      he's obsessed

      mommy, mommy, mommy, mommy…

      Now just in Jack a video of Jack as a child…

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cNkp4QF3we8

      Or adult...

      Delete
    6. .

      Perhaps, that is why no one can understand the rat. Perhaps it is not his lack of English skills but rather his lack of blogging skills.

      Maybe because of his ADHD, he is unable to follow a single post through from beginning to end. This could be the reason he just can't seem to keep up when discussion on a particular subject extends for multiple posts. Add to this the fact that as he stated a day or two ago, he seems to be unable to scroll backwards, this despite the vaunted blogging skills he boasts of.

      The results are exceedingly strange. We see the sharp left turns in the conversations, the non-sequiturs, the diversions. We see him demand responses over and over on the same issue even though he has been given those answers before all because he refuses to go back to see if his original query was responded to. His latest is to challenge someone on their position in an ongoing discussion here even when that person has never taken a position on the subject in question nor for that matter participated in the discussion at all.

      A rare and strange pathology indeed.

      .

      Delete
    7. rat is easy to understand - he lacks the courage of his convictions but loves to argue and to goad.

      Delete
  44. Bottom Line

    Americans who obtained new health insurance policies in 2014 using the government exchanges are roughly as positive about their healthcare coverage and the quality of healthcare they receive as the average insured American, and are more satisfied with the cost of their coverage. More than two-thirds of the newly insured who purchased coverage through federal or state exchanges intend to renew their exchange policies, while another 7% plan to look for a different policy through the exchanges.

    As the healthcare exchanges reopen on Nov. 15, these data suggest that the currently uninsured will mostly be pleased with the outcome if they opt to use the exchanges to obtain insurance on this second go-around.

    Gallup

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rufus, you never fail in having some poll that tells us how happy we should be.

      Well I aint. Currently our Silver Blue Cross and Blue Shield is $1465 a month for me and my wife and kids.

      It's so good our regular specialists REFUSE it. We pay a cash price at their offices.

      Of course, when my daughter had a concussion the ONLY network specialist was 90 minutes away. We went to closer and better doctor and paid cash…

      Of course my story doesn't impress you….

      But I am hearing a lot of folks not to happy with their "new and improved" plans…

      Looking forward to see what the new year's price increase will be… I have heard it's only 9% or $131 a month increase..

      For nothing...

      Delete
    2. What's this guy's name, Gruber? Grubber?

      He was right in the middle of ObamaCare and says it was sold to the sheeple with a pack of lies, lies and more lies.

      It's all over Real Clear Politics if you want to read about it.

      It's a total disaster and is coming apart at the seams........

      Delete
    3. Arrogance plus deception equals Obamacare. Ask Gruber.

      Economist Jonathan Gruber speaks at a conference of the Workers Compensation Research Institute. (Dominick Reuter, Reuters)
      By Editorial Board
      Healthcare Policies and LawsHealth InsuranceAffordable Care Act (Obamacare)ElectionsBarack ObamaNancy Pelosi
      Jonathan Gruber, a candid insider, tells Americans the ugly truths. Finally.
      Why Americans don't trust leaders

      "We have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it ...."

      — Then-U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Obamacare, March 9, 2010

      .

      Words to live by:

      Thou shalt not lie. Especially when thou mess with one-sixth of the U.S. economy. And when thou art assuring Americans that thy bill won't kill their health insurance policies. Because when thou gets snared in thy intentional deceptions, there's hell to pay.
      Like the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board on Facebook
      Like the Chicago Tribune Editorial Board on FacebookOpen link

      These are not, though, words by which the Obama administration, Democrats in Congress and their allies sold the Affordable Care Act. We know because MIT economist Jonathan Gruber, a key architect of the act, repeatedly gloated — in video-recorded appearances — that the sponsors lied. One passage from an October 2013 conference at the University of Pennsylvania: "(L)ack of transparency is a huge political advantage and basically, you know, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically, that was really, really critical to getting this thing (Obamacare) to pass."

      We won't condemn Gruber's earlier deceptions or praise him as the honest man for whom Diogenes the Cynic searched. He has helped Americans absorb the Obamacare chapter in a terrible saga: why Americans don't trust leaders.
      lRelated The Stupid Virus and the Smart Economist

      John Kass
      The Stupid Virus and the Smart Economist

      See all related
      8

      Delete
    4. The arc of selling the ACA began with assurances that "the health care bill," as it was advertised, wouldn't cost insured citizens their coverage. President Barack Obama made the point incessantly and in varying phrases, never more emphatically than in his June 15, 2009, address to the American Medical Association: "(N)o matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor. Period. If you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan. Period. No one will take it away, no matter what."
      One honest man
      Scott Stantis

      The Wall Street Journal later reported that Obama's advisers knew he was making a promise he couldn't keep, and they debated whether he should "explain the nuances of the succinct line in his stump speeches." Instead, three months after Obama signed the ACA in March 2010, the administration acknowledged on page 34,552 of the Federal Register its midrange estimate that "66 percent of small employer plans and 45 percent of large employer plans" couldn't survive Obamacare. Last autumn's wave of canceled individual policies further debunked the If-you-like promise that, to their eternal chagrin, hundreds of campaigning Democrats repeated to voters.

      A video that surfaced this week shows Gruber telling a Rhode Island audience in 2012 how the feds will collect a tax on high-end policies without families realizing they're actually paying the tax via insurers: "(I)t's a very clever, you know, basic exploitation of the lack of economic understanding of the American voter."

      A 2013 video has Gruber in St. Louis describing how that "Cadillac tax" got into the ACA: "They proposed it and that passed, because the American people are too stupid to understand the difference."

      Gruber told MSNBC on Wednesday that his Pennsylvania comments were "at an academic conference" and "off-the-cuff": "I basically spoke inappropriately and I regret having made those comments."
      cComments

      Delete
    5. The editorials on your front web page (government bad, government bad, Ted freaking Cruz) exemplify why I will *never* purchase another Tribune newspaper. You represent nothing but big business and the wealthy. #notribuneforme
      Curt Alliaume
      at 2:30 PM November 14, 2014

      Add a comment See all comments
      55

      No doubt because they're true. Gruber hasn't renounced a thing he said.

      These deceptions are a world apart from the scuzzy but not atypical payoffs (the Cornhusker Kickback, the Louisiana Purchase) that bought the final Senate votes to pass the ACA. Nor are we citing other sponsor claims that critics of the law also see as lies: that coverage really would be affordable, that the act would lower medical costs, that it would ease federal deficits. All debatable.
      Smug Obama administration duped the public
      Smug Obama administration duped the public
      Charles Lipson

      What's not debatable is that Obamacare's arc of deception is exposed — not unique, perhaps, but blatant and, thanks to our own eyes and Gruber's words, provable: Obamacare, in order to function, had to break its backers' promises. Also convincing: Gruber, recorded cautioning in 2012 that if states don't set up their own insurance exchanges, "(your) citizens don't get their tax credits." That's the very issue the U.S. Supreme Court now will litigate, perhaps to the functional downfall of Obamacare.

      Defenders of Obamacare dismiss these revelations with three breezy retorts: We all knew how the law really would work. (No.) You gotta do what you gotta do. (No.) And this Gruber, he's a nobody. This third excuse basked in absurdity Thursday: Pelosi dismissively said she didn't know who Gruber is and that he didn't help write the ACA, so, "Let's put him aside." Turns out she issued a 2009 news release touting "noted MIT health care economist Jonathan Gruber" whose modeling predicted "lower premiums than under current law for the millions of Americans using the newly-established Health Insurance Exchange." Oh, and Pelosi also had discussed Gruber at a news conference.

      Apologists surely will dream up more sophisticated excuses. But after the blithe yammer we're left with the admission of National Journal's Ron Fournier, an ardent backer of the ACA: "And so even I have to admit, as a supporter, that Obamacare was built and sold on a foundation of lies." He says that in today's political discourse there are two types of lies: "Those that hurt 'my party' and 'my policies'; and those that don't. We condemn the former and forgive the latter ...."

      Even in Gruber's come-cleanery, there's one more lie. The people who deceived you about Obamacare didn't do so because you're stupid. They did so because they thought voters are smart, and would reject them and their schemes if they didn't spin their many deceptions.

      We had a decisive national election last week. Maybe Americans proved how stupid, or how smart, they truly are.

      Delete
    6. .

      Come on, now. Leave the guy alone. All of us need a little confirmation bias now and then..

      :o)

      .

      Delete
    7. More:

      RCP Morning Edition
      Obamacare Sold on a Pack of Lies - Charles Krauthammer, Washington Post
      The Gruber Controversy & DC's Dirty Little Secret - Neil Irwin, NY Times
      Dems' Path After Obamacare: Down, Down, Down - Byron York,


      I'll quit now, due to Quirk's polite request.

      Delete
  45. This thread about Rosetta was quite amazing and good. Thanks Deuce.

    ReplyDelete
  46. I will commend all of you who stand your ground, make your point and keep an open mind.

    ReplyDelete
  47. I post a Gallup Poll, moron posts an opinion piece, and "I'm the one" suffering from confirmation bias. :)

    ya gotta love it.

    Oh, and watch out for them death panels.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry Rufus, I lost interest in "polls" when America was polled who was the "best" singer and they voted for Madonna.

      Polls, like statistics are quite, shall we say, bendable.

      Word choice and the choices of either or can be leading...

      If you point was correct? The country would be anointing Obama as a health care genius...

      But the rumblings across the nation are wide and constant...

      But thanks for sharing a "poll"

      Delete
  48. Here is a ... reverse abortion kind of issue:

    "Ontario hospital cannot force chemo on 11-year-old native girl, court rules.00In a decision that could affect First Nations people across Canada, a judge in Ontario has ruled that a hospital cannot force a cancer-stricken 11-year-old girl to resume chemotherapy because the Constitution protects her mother’s right to treat the child with traditional aboriginal medicine instead.

    Applause broke out in a Brantford, Ont., courtroom filled mainly with supporters of the girl, known as J.J, and her mother, known as D.H., when Justice Gethin Edward concluded that the family’s aboriginal rights trumped the hospital’s attempts to compel child-welfare authorities to intervene and send J.J. back to the hospital for chemotherapy.

    “This is not an 11th-hour epiphany employed to take her daughter out of the rigours of chemotherapy. Rather, it is a decision made by a mother, on behalf of a daughter she truly loves, steeped in a practice that has been rooted in their culture from its beginnings …” he said.

    “It is this court’s conclusion therefore, that D.H.’s decision to pursue traditional medicine for her daughter, J.J., is her aboriginal right. Further, such a right cannot be qualified as a right only if it is proven to work by employing the Western medical paradigm. To do so would be to leave open the opportunity to perpetually erode aboriginal rights.”

    A woman who identified herself as J.J.’s aunt called the girl’s mother from the courtroom. “It’s dismissed,” she said into the phone, sobbing. After handing off the phone to another woman, the aunt wiped her tears with a tissue, visibly shaking, said: “I’m speechless, that’s all I can say.”

    The other woman continued to describe the scene to D.H. on the phone. “It feels like I’ve transcended something bigger than all of us,” she said.

    Peter Fitzgerald, the president of McMaster Children’s Hospital in Hamilton, said there were no immediate plans to appeal the decision, but he did not rule that option out.

    “We’ve made it very clear from the beginning that without conventional therapy there is no chance of survival,” he said in an interview Friday. “We have been open to the combination of traditional therapy with conventional medical therapy. But we have no reason to believe that the patient will survive the disease without conventional therapy.”

    J.J.’s case began in August, when she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a cancer that arises in the bone marrow. Doctors at McMaster Children’s Hospital told her mother that there was a better than 90 per cent chance of a cure if the girl was treated with chemotherapy.

    At first, D.H. agreed to the treatment plan, but 10 days into a 32-day course of chemotherapy, she decided to halt her daughter’s treatment. She later wrote in an open letter to a native newspaper that she did not want her daughter treated with “poison” and would take her to a holistic healing centre in Florida and pursue aboriginal healing instead.

    At that point, doctors at McMaster Children’s Hospital contacted Brant Family and Children’s Services, the child-welfare agency that covers the nearby Six Nations of the Grand River Reserve, where J.J. lives. The hospital wanted BFCS to step in and force the child back into hospital, but the agency investigated J.J’s family and concluded she was not a “child in need of protection.”

    That is when the case took its first novel turn. In past instances where a parent has refused life-saving treatment for a child – including cases where Jehovah’s Witnesses have tried to prevent their children from receiving blood transfusions – child-welfare authorities have generally sided with the doctors and taken the parents to court to usurp their decision-making power.



    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In this case, when BCFS rebuffed the hospital’s request, the Hamilton Health Sciences Corporation took the child-welfare authorities to court.

      In his decision, Justice Edward, who grew up in Brantford and is a member of the Six Nations band, discussed whether J.J. would qualify as a child in need of protection under The Child and Family Services Act in Ontario. Both sides agreed that D.H. is a loving and supportive mother and that only one part of the act might apply, a section that says a child can be deemed in need of protection if “the child requires medical treatment to cure, prevent or alleviate physical harm or suffering and the child’s parent or the person having charge of the child does not provide, or refuses or is unavailable or unable to consent to the treatment.”

      Rather than dealing with that issue on its face, Justice Edward turned to an analysis of the aboriginal rights protected by Section 35 of the Constitution. To count as an aboriginal right, he said, a practice must be “integral” to First Nations identity and date back to the time before Europeans arrived in Canada.

      He concluded that D.H.’s beliefs fit that bill, leading him to dismiss the hospital’s application.

      Outside the courtroom, the chiefs of the Six Nations of the Grand River and the Mississaugas of New Credit First Nation, a neighbouring band, declared the decision a victory for aboriginal rights.


      “This is a precedent-setting decision … for our people across the country,” said Ava Hill, chief of the Six Nations of the Grand River. “We were the first people here. We looked after ourselves. We had our traditional medicines. And we looked after your ancestors when they arrived here. What medicines do you think we used?”

      Chief Hill said J.J. is in good health. She said she saw J.J. and her mother two weeks ago at a community event, where J.J. was outside playing.

      Chief Bryan LaForme of the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation said a girl from his reserve with a similar story was also doing well. Makayla Sault, also 11, was diagnosed with the same type of cancer as J.J. last spring and also chose to forgo modern medicine for treatment at the Florida healing centre, a place called the Hippocrates Health Institute that advertises itself online as a centre for alternative – not aboriginal – medicine.

      Doctors at McMaster Children’s Hospital had also asked the BFCS to intervene in Makayla’s case. When the agency refused, the hospital let the matter drop.

      A letter apparently from Makayla’s father was posted earlier this week to the Facebook page of a Christian music star asking people to pray for Makayla because she had been sent back to hospital, critically ill.

      But Chief LaForme said it was an infection – not cancer – that landed Makayla in hospital.

      “I visited the parents [Thursday.] The young lady is home,” he said. “She has no cancer. She went for blood tests Wednesday. The doctors found she is free of cancer. She has an infection that is being treated at home and she is doing well.”

      It was not possible to independently verify that immediately. Dr. Fitzgerald, the hospital president, said he could not comment on either girl’s condition, citing patient confidentiality.

      “We remain hopeful. There is still a child out there who has an opportunity to live a long and healthy life,” he said. “I would just hope that the family comes to that realization and seeks conventional therapy.”..

      http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health-and-fitness/health/cancer-patient-has-right-to-use-aboriginal-healing-instead-of-chemo-judge-rules/article21587859/#dashboard/follows/

      Delete
    2. Meanwhile, in a saner US of A a court is about to sentence some Jehovah Witness parents to jail for refusing to allow their kid to receive life supporting medication. The child is dead.

      Delete
    3. May not have been JW, may have been some other whacko fundie group of prayer power people.

      I like prayer, but use both, medicine and prayer.

      Delete