Bombs and rockets

It seems that after a recent computer failure the Hubble Space Telescope is back online in a backup mode.

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In Rhodes’ energy history I came across an interesting parallel with the 1988 STS-27 and 2003 STS-107 space shuttle missions, in which the national security payload and secrecy in the first mission may have prevented lessons from being learned which might have helped avert the subsequent disaster. Specifically, the STS-27 mission was launching a classified […]

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I’ve noted before the exceptional and enduring influence Hyman Rickover (‘father of the nuclear navy’) has had over the subsequent use of nuclear technology. Richard Rhodes’ energy history provides another example: At the same time, Rickover made a crucial decision to change the form of the fuel from uranium metal to uranium dioxide, a ceramic. […]

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China has landed a rover on Mars and launched the first module for a space station.

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This week’s issue of The Economist has Taiwan on the cover and describes it as the “most dangerous place on Earth”. It is widely reported that a central purpose behind China’s military buildup and particularly the acquisition of naval and amphibious warfare capabilities is the country’s ambition to conquer its democratic neighbour. The implications thereof […]

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Britain’s Armageddon weapon are their four Vanguard-class ballistic missile submarines: Vanguard, Victorious, Vigilant, and Vengeance. Since decomissioning their aircraft-dropped bombs in 1998, the subs have been the only means of delivery for British nuclear weapons, with each possessing 16 ballistic missile tubes for Trident D5 missiles, each built to carry as many as 14 of […]

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The Biden administration has announced that most US forces will withdraw from Afghanistan by September 11th. What have we learned since 2001 and what have the consequences of the war been? Could Al Qaeda have been expelled or destroyed without the invasion? How will the US / NATO / Canadian intervention affect Afghanistan’s long-term future? […]

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