Wednesday, October 7, 2015   |   5,372 users online
Contact us    |    Advertise    |   Help   RSS icon Twitter icon Facebook icon
    Home  ·  News  ·  Forum  ·  Stories  ·  Image Gallery  ·  Columns  ·  Encyclopedia  ·  Videos  ·  Chat
Find: in

Spacecraft could navigate using pulsars

Posted on Monday, 2 April, 2012 | Comment icon 5 comments | News tip by: questionmark

Image credit: NASA

Future spacecraft could one day use dead stars as a way to determine their position in space.

Scientists in Germany are working on a means with which a spacecraft could pinpoint its location in space by detecting X-ray signals from pulsars - dead, dense stars that rotate extremely rapidly with remarkable regularity. "The principle is so simple that it will definitely have applications," said Prof Werner Becker. "These pulsars are everywhere in the Universe and their flashing is so predictable that it makes such an approach really straightforward."

"Spacecraft could one day navigate through the cosmos using a particular type of dead star as a kind of GPS."

  View: Full article |  Source: BBC News

  Discuss: View comments (5)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by spud the mackem on 30 March, 2012, 22:36
We dont have to worry about that,because humans will never go into deep space,as they will become extinct before it can happen,having wiped each other out.
Comment icon #2 Posted by DieChecker on 2 April, 2012, 19:35
Would that be a form of "dead" reckoning?
Comment icon #3 Posted by TattooMan on 3 April, 2012, 1:42
@ spud the mackem; That's a real optimistic view of the future there genius. Why are you even here? Sites like this are for open-minded people who are a bit intellectual. Not for little trollers. Additionally, there were people who said we would never break the sound barrier. Really? The same people said we would never go to the moon. OK? Now we are planning to go to Mars. I am so happy people like you are not scientists or have much intelligence to stop the progress of human evolution and exploration.
Comment icon #4 Posted by questionmark on 5 April, 2012, 0:15
No, more like lighthouse triangulation (if we want to talk in nautical terms). Dead reckoning would be the input from the compass and the log, whereby you take the speed and the direction to estimate your position. Generally ends up on a reef because you don't consider all the variability like currents, side winds and so on. In this case we have some pulsars pulsating at known positions at a known rate. The variations in rate signify speed (to or from) and the triangulation the relative position.
Comment icon #5 Posted by Hybrid89 on 14 April, 2012, 10:14
In my opinion, Im sure there was a time when the thought of deep sea exploration or traveling to the moon, or even flying great distances in a machine wouldve been thought of as impossible. Yet here we stand. We've done all of those things. Now im a firm believer that scientists have found or discovered a clean new energy and 'could be' testing it at the moemnt. Again its my own speculation. I think thatwhen a new efficient Energy resource is out there for everyone to use, then Space travel wont be far off. Ive seen a lot of threads on here about 'ecosystems' how would ... [More]

Please Login or Register to post a comment.

Other news in this category
First ever private moon landing set for 2017
Posted 10-2-2015 | 7 comments
A company in California is hoping to become to the first private venture to land a probe on the moon....
Scientists to trial asteroid redirect mission
Posted 9-30-2015 | 12 comments
The new mission will attempt a potentially world-saving maneuver by redirecting an asteroid's trajectory....
NASA discovers liquid water flowing on Mars
Posted 9-28-2015 | 73 comments
NASA has announced that it has discovered the best evidence yet of water flowing on the surface of Mars....
Rare blood moon eclipse to occur tonight
Posted 9-27-2015 | 28 comments
An impressive astronomical event is set to take place tonight for the first time in more than 30 years....
NASA teases major announcement about Mars
Posted 9-25-2015 | 49 comments
The space agency is set to reveal 'a major science finding from its ongoing exploration of Mars.'...
NASA releases Pluto virtual flyover animation
Posted 9-19-2015 | 14 comments
Images from New Horizons have been combined to show what it would look like to fly high over Pluto....
Black hole collision may disrupt space-time
Posted 9-18-2015 | 22 comments
Scientists have predicted that the event will create ripples throughout the space-time continuum....
Cassini discovers global ocean on Enceladus
Posted 9-16-2015 | 14 comments
Scientists are now confident that Saturn's icy moon is home to a subterranean ocean of liquid water....

 View: More news in this category
Top   |  Home   |   Forum   |   News   |   Image Gallery   |  Columns   |   Encyclopedia   |   Videos   |   Polls
UM-X 10.6 © 2001-2015
Privacy Policy and Disclaimer   |   Cookies   |   Advertise   |   Contact   |   Help/FAQ