Articles for "Raumfahrtkontrollzentrum"

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Space | 24. September 2018 | posted by Friederike Wolff

Moving around on an unfamiliar celestial body

Credit: DLR (CC-BY 3.0)
MASCOT's swing arm

Moving around on small bodies is difficult, because the gravitational pull and thus the friction between a lander and the ground is very small. Conventional means of transport, such as wheels or chains, are based on traction and are thus unsuitable for use on asteroids. Therefore, a mobility mechanism was developed for MASCOT in order to enable movement in such an environment: the lander is equipped with a swing arm that accelerates and decelerates an eccentrically mounted mass. The resulting reaction forces, in turn, allow the lander to push itself away from the ground. As the gravitational pull is very low, even small push-off forces can result in big jumps: a distance of 17 metres can be achieved with an initial speed of only five centimetres per second. The gravitational acceleration on the surface of Ryugu is only 0.00015 metres per second squared and is thus 60.000 times lower than on Earth (9.81 m/s2). read more

Space | 21. September 2018 | posted by Michael Maibaum

What will happen in the MASCOT control room before and during the landing?

Michael Maibaum vor jeder Menge Daten
Credit: DLR (CC-BY 3.0)
Lots of data: The MASCOT teams receive the lander's data via the Japanese Hayabusa2 space probe

MASCOT will begin its main and also final mission phase on 3 October 2018. Early in the morning, at 03:58:15 local time, MASCOT will separate from Hayabusa2 and land on the surface of Ryugu a few minutes later. It will already begin to conduct scientific measurements before starting its descent, and will continue doing so after landing, right up until its battery runs out. Standing on the surface, MASCOT will observe its surroundings and carry out various measuring sequences, depending on whether it is night or day at the landing site at the time. A day on Ryugu is only 7:38 hours, meaning that MASCOT will land in the early afternoon, local asteroid time. read more

Space | 17. September 2018 | posted by Christian Grimm

Point of no return – when MASCOT separates from Hayabusa2

Credit: DLR
Christian Grimm working on the MASCOT lander with colleagues

The date has been set! On 3 October 2018, after almost four years in space, the Franco-German MASCOT asteroid lander will separate from its Japanese mother craft Hayabusa2 and free-fall onto the surface of the asteroid Ryugu. The separation, driven by a small mechanism, will be a pivotal moment on which much depends. Once triggered, it will create a mechanically coupled chain reaction that will irrevocably initiate the mission. This is the point of no return. The way in which the mechanism functions and the possible risks of separation are briefly outlined here. read more

Space | 12. September 2018 | posted by Friederike Wütscher

Study on ageing athletes at the World Championships in Málaga – Top results in the competitions and the study

Credit: DLR
Buoyant mood during the calf ultrasound: a participant from the United States takes part in the MAFS study

The first week of the World Master Track & Field Championships in Málaga has come to an end and a few gold, silver and bronze medals have been awarded. Some of the athletes proudly bring their medals to the examinations and, despite the intense heat in the south of Spain, show the same level of focus and commitment in the MAFS18 study. All of them are determined to score top results in the examination of how regular exercise affects health. read more

Space | 10. September 2018 | posted by Friederike Wütscher

Study of older athletes at the World Championships in Málaga – successful athletes show an overwhelming response to the MAFS study

100 Meter Lauf der Frauen 80-84 Jahre
Credit: DLR
After the women’s 100-metre race in the age group 80-84

The first few days of the MAFS study of ageing athletes at the World Championships in Málaga are over, and the team remains amazed by the overwhelming response. Some subjects have already scheduled tests for the second week, as the examination appointments at the stadium are almost completely booked for the first six days of the world championships and the athletes need to compete in their events as well. In the early hours the team is already assembled at the venue to set up the measurement stations, start up the equipment and drink a welcome cup of coffee before the first highly motivated and extremely athletic subjects start knocking on the door to complete the tests. Breakfast is also prepared for athletes who are scheduled for the resting metabolism test, which requires them to arrive with an empty stomach. read more

Space | 04. September 2018 | posted by Friederike Wütscher

Let the games begin – Study of older athletes at the World Championships in Málaga

Credit: DLR
The MAFS study team

All the boxes are unpacked, the measurement stations have been set up, the first test subjects recruited and the study team is looking forward to their work – they are all set to go. The first measurements in the MAFS study (Masters Athletics Field Study 2018) started at 08:00 today, at the Senior World Masters Track and Field Athletics Championships in Málaga. The MAFS study examines how sport at an advanced age affects health, specifically the heart, circulatory system and metabolism. The competition is scheduled to run until 16 September – and the DLR team is on site to take a close look at the athletes' muscles, hearts and attitudes to life. read more

Space | 23. August 2018 | posted by Johannes Weppler

Nocturnal thrills – a tale of an EVA, live from Moscow

Credit: DLR, MPO, Roskosmos
The ICARUS team in the Russian control centre on the evening of the launch of the antenna to the ISS

It is 01:28 on 16 August 2018, and applause has suddenly broken out in the MCC-M, the Russian control centre for the International Space Station (ISS). The room is full of happy faces. The ICARUS antenna, which will be used to track animals from space, has just been successfully installed on the exterior of the Russian Zvezda module on the ISS. read more

Space | 17. August 2018 | posted by Elke Heinemann

ICARUS - Understanding and protecting life on Earth by giving animals an opportunity to communicate with us

Quelle: DLR (CC-BY 3.0)
ICARUS: Global monitoring of the movement of birds and small animals

If animals could talk, they could tell us a lot about life on our planet. Their migratory movements help us to better understand how to protect human health and wildlife on Earth. Yet scientists are unable to follow small animals and insects on their long journey. Billions of songbirds move every year from continent to continent. Bats and countless insect species may do the same, but we don’t know for sure. This knowledge could provide insights into animal behaviour, the spread of epidemics such as bird flu and Ebola, the impact of climate change, as well as food security in some regions. It would also help predict natural disasters by tapping the highly developed senses of animals, which often react faster to such dangers than humans do.

In order to observe the global migratory movements of small animals through a satellite system, the ICARUS (International Cooperation for Animal Research Using Space) initiative is using miniaturised transmitters attached to animals to collect data on their migration patterns. read more

Space | 16. August 2018 | posted by Freya Scheffler-Kayser

Everyday life on the ISS – part 2

Credit: ESA/NASA–A. Gerst
Sunrise seen from the ISS

How does Alexander Gerst spend his days on the ISS? After getting up, washing and breakfast, he attends the 07:30 – 07:45 early conference with the entire crew and the five control centres operated by the ISS partners, which are located in Houston (USA), Korolyov near Moscow (Russia), Saint-Hubert (Quebec, Canada), Tsukuba (Japan) and for Europe at the Columbus Control Centre at DLR in Oberpfaffenhofen, close to Munich. read more

Space | 09. August 2018 | posted by Philipp Burtscheidt

Immuno-2: Examining the immune system in microgravity to improve our quality of life on Earth

Credit: DLR (CC-BY 3.0)
Infographic Immuno-2: Examining the stress-related weakening of the immune system

All of us experience stress in our daily lives. This can affect the human immune system, leading to illnesses both on Earth and in space. Many astronauts return from missions in poor health due to the harsh conditions endured over prolonged periods in space.

On Earth, healthy and critically ill people, in particular, suffer from similar ailments caused by the same stress factors, having a considerable socioeconomic impact. In 2015, the economic losses caused by the incapacity to work – often due to mental illness – amounted to 113 billion euro for Germany alone. read more