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The Best Record Player…in Outer Space?

December 14, 2016 • Admin

One of the best pop culture references to science this year came from Third Man Records, an indie record label by musician Jack White. It sent and played a record player in outer space last July, in celebration of its seventh anniversary. Needless to say, the record label is nothing short of ambitious for going all up just to go all out.

For the stunt, they designed and built their own turntable and balloon-propelled craft called the Icarus. As it ascended to an altitude that is considered as outer space, it kept playing for the enjoyment of our extraterrestrial friends. That folks, is how you make friends in really high places. Now all you audiophiles out there are probably already wondering how it sounded. Not exactly as good as the best record player on earth, but below is a video for you to review yourself.

During the event, there were exclusive parties, live entertainment and limited edition merchandise in Third Man stores in Nashville and Detroit. For those who didn’t make it to the event, the launch’s live webcast was made available for streaming online. It started working on the 30th of July, and everything went according to plan.

This is claimed to be the first ever vinyl that got played at such an altitude. However, this isn’t actually the first music in outer space, because astronauts have long been bringing cassette tapes on their trips. (No, Star-Lord’s Awesome Mix Vol. 1 doesn’t count.) For the Third Man record player to work, they probably made it so that some form of atmosphere is in it. Otherwise, it wouldn’t have gone high enough to at least reach the nearest part of outer space.

vinyl record player

It should be noted that the Icarus didn’t actually brought the first playable vinyl to outer space. The first was the golden records that were aboard the Voyager spacecraft that launched in 1977. They were meant to be played by extraterrestrial beings, unlike the Icarus which played Carl Sagan’s “A Glorious Dawn” as it flew.

Space Camp Experience to be Used by Educators in their Classrooms

December 12, 2016 • Admin

Even though the academic year is almost already over, a number of science educators still revel in the most memorable moments of their space camp experience. The teachers were the 200 or so participants chosen to join in the HESA or Honeywell Educators at Space Academy.

The educators joined in around 45 hours of classroom lectures and laboratory activities that were primarily about space expeditions and science in general. Classes tailored for astronauts included flight dynamics interaction, simulation of high-performance jets, water and land survival training, and situation-based missions in space.

Conceived in 2004, the HESA program’s mission is to assist middle school science educators in convincing their students to embark on careers in science, technology, engineering and math (or STEM). The program is one of several space camps that are available in the U.S.

During the conduct of the program, the HESA staff told the teachers that their students are the “Mars Generation, or the ones that are very much likely to pioneer in inhabiting the said planet’s surface. And so as teachers, they were told that they have to do what they can to prime their students for such.

Most of the program participants said that the best part was collaborating with teachers around the world on lessons that they plan to use in their classrooms. Among the activities that most of them liked was the one involving the construction of a lander / rover hybrid using basic materials. An egg is then placed on such contraption, which in turn is dropped from a higher point. The challenge is that on impact, the egg shouldn’t break.

The challenge that teachers face is getting their students’ attention. It’s only after then that they’ll be able to help them develop creativity and problem-solving skills. But with their space camp experience now, they just might be able to do it. Visit here again for more stories like this.