[Offtopic] Re: Japanese Spacecraft Set to Hit the Moon

Roland Gesthuizen rgesthuizen at gmail.com
Wed Jun 17 23:50:26 EST 2009

Thanks Ross, I will pass it onto the other teachers who posed the question.

Considering the Apollo seismographs on the moon were powered by a
radioactive isotope thermal generator, there is a good chance that they
worked long after they were placed. Although the Apollo 11 unit failed after
a month, this web page indicates that the others kept on streaming data up
to 1997 and that they are still processing the mountain of data that was

Regards Roland

2009/6/17 Ross Berner <rossbern at netspace.net.au>

>  I'm not sure about the moon-quake seismograph on moon. I've not heard
> anything about it recently. I would expect if it did find something we would
> hear about it. The Impact itself is not particularly large, I would describe
> it as "medium" size impact. The craft with a weight of about 2.6 tonne is
> around the same weight as an asteroid 1 - 2 metres in diameter. NASA only
> tracks asteroids of km size, so we don't know how many impacts of this size
> would actually occur. What is special about this impact is we knew exactly
> when & where to watch. With an asteroid we don't have that info. In the
> 1960's the Russian's crashed several "Luna" space craft into moon.
> All these impacts would have a very small effect on the orbit. The mass of
> the moon is about 7 x 10 raised to 22 power. This means the moon is 19½
> orders of magnitude larger than the space craft.
> Regards Ross Berner
>  ----- Original Message -----
>  *From:* Roland Gesthuizen <rgesthuizen at gmail.com>
> *To:* Information Technology Teachers' Offtopic Mailing List<offtopic at edulists.com.au>; Ross
> Berner <rossbern at netspace.net.au>
> *Sent:* Monday, June 15, 2009 3:16 PM
> *Subject:* Re: [Offtopic] Re: Japanese Spacecraft Set to Hit the Moon
> Good question .. I bet the climate change deniers will make whatever
> mileage they can from the paperclip variation in the moons orbit that is
> detected and the need for further research. The reality is that any
> variation in the orbit started long before the crash as the satellite and
> moon began their joint orbital dance of death.
> There is a moon-quake seismograph on the moon left after the Apollo
> missions. They did use this to detect the empty Apollo lander craft that
> crashed onto the moon after the impacted the surface. I am curious if it is
> still working (albeit it may no longer be working)
> I will run both thoughts past a good friend of mine, Ross who has a sound
> physics background and is president of the ASV cosmological society.
> Regards Roland
> 2009/6/15 Alan Oh <OH.A at wcc.vic.edu.au>
>>  Is the moon now off course? Tides going to change, or will the moon tear
>> itself from it’s orbit like in Space 1999 ? Showing my age a little here.
>> Best regards,
>> *Alan Oh*
>> *Computer Operations Dept*
>>  ------------------------------
>> *From:* offtopic-bounces at edulists.com.au [mailto:
>> offtopic-bounces at edulists.com.au] *On Behalf Of *Roland Gesthuizen
>> *Sent:* Friday, 12 June 2009 6:03 PM
>> *To:* eChalk mailing list; Information Technology Teachers' Offtopic
>> Mailing List
>> *Subject:* [Offtopic] Re: Japanese Spacecraft Set to Hit the Moon
>> The following link has some photographs of the lunar collision taken by
>> some Astronomers at the Anglo Australia Telescope .. working back late, as
>> they do best :-)
>> Regards Roland (from a rather overcast Melbourne and wearing a warm footy
>> scarf)
>> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
>> From: *Rob Hollow* <Robert.Hollow at csiro.au>
>> Date: 2009/6/12
>> Subject: Re: Japanese Spacecraft lunar impact
>> To: Roland Gesthuizen <rgesthuizen at gmail.com>
>> Hi Roland, astronomers on the AAT imaged it:
>> http://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Mwtzns-myaARFavL9a8ycg?feat=directlink
>> Cheers
>> Rob
>> Robert  Hollow
>> Education Officer
>> CSIRO Australia Telescope National Facility
>> robert.hollow at csiro.au
>> Visit our Outreach website: http://outreach.atnf.csiro.au
>> Get involved in the International Year of Astronomy 2009:
>> http://www.astronomy2009.org.au
>> PO Box 76 Epping, NSW 1710
>> ph: +61 (0)2 9372 4247
>> fax: +61 (0)2 9372 4444
>>  2009/6/10 Roland Gesthuizen <rgesthuizen at gmail.com>
>> If you are reading this on Thursday morning, the collision has already
>> happened and you can probably view the pictures (if any).
>>      http://spaceweather.com/
>> At least my WA friends will not have to stay up as late as I must in
>> Melbourne to glimpse of the Japanese Spacecraft that is predicted to impact
>> on the lunar surface. I will be poking my head outside with a telescope and
>> battle the clouds and cold to spot the lunar impact on the top LHS (turning
>> their diagram upside down for the southern hemisphere) From my copy of the
>> open source software Stellarium, the Moon will be to the NE and about 80
>> degrees high (just look up .. no need to use the sofware like I did!)
>> This makes the impact time for Melbourne: Thursday, June 11, 2009 at
>> 4:30:00 AM or Perth Thursday, June 11, 2009 at 2:30:00 AM
>> As my wife points out, the last time she looked at space junk in WA, it
>> was Skylab with no space repellent to keep the debris away. Dont expect any
>> debris clouds spiraling back or blinding flash... just a vague chance of
>> spotting something through binoculars or largish telescope. We lost ours
>> with the Gippsland bush fires that ran through our school camp back in
>> February so I am relying on one that a friend loaned me. Fingers crossed ..
>> Kaguya is a big spaceship. It masses 2,900 kg and will hit the Moon at an
>> oblique angle traveling approximately 6,000 km/hr. Whether it tumbles and
>> bounces along the lunar surface or runs headlong into some towering crater
>> wall, no one can say. Clues to the end of Kaguya will come on June 10th in
>> the form of an explosive flash (or lack thereof) and high-res images of the
>> crash site taken by future lunar orbiters.
>> If nothing happens, just wave your fist at the moon and get back to
>> writing reports.
>> Regards Roland
>> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
>> From: *SpaceWeather.com* <swlist at spaceweather.com>
>> Date: 2009/6/10
>> Subject: Japanese Spacecraft Set to Hit the Moon
>> To: "SpaceWeather.com" <swlist at spaceweather.com>
>> Space Weather News for June 10, 2009
>> http://spaceweather.com
>> IMPACT ALERT: Japan's Kaguya will crash into the Moon on Wednesday, June
>> 10th, around 1830 UT. The timing favors observers in Asia and Australia, who
>> might be able to see a flash of light or a plume of debris rising from the
>> Moon's southeastern limb.  The spacecraft masses 2,600 kg and it will slam
>> into the lunar surface at 6,000 km/hr.  No one knows, however, how bright
>> the flash might be or whether it will be visible even through large
>> telescopes.  Images of the crash, if any are captured, will be posted on
>> http://spaceweather.com .
>> <http://spaceweather.com/services/>

Roland Gesthuizen - ICT Coordinator - Westall Secondary College

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change
the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has." --Margaret Mead
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