Artemis - the NASA mission

Genuine Scottish oats are known to be superior, containing a higher proportion of essential oils and protein. ...snip
Very questionable statement by the then Scottish Agricultural Minister.

Though I notice he says vaguely Scottish Oats SEEM to have more Oil and Protein. Suggesting more research needed.

Well, I have done the research, and Canadian planet10 (dave) is the clear winner in the Protein department!

Scott's  Porage ingredients.jpg

5g versus 4.4g per 40g! Scotland seems to narrowly beat Canada in the Fat contest with 3.2g versus 3g.

Canadian Oats have 27g of carbs. Scottish ones 24g. But that may just be a function of water content and local humidity, Scotland being a very damp place...

Adding milk is a game changer, All looks more substantial to me. Certainly more calories.

Anyway, I have had two bowls of porage today. One with milk and sugar, and one with water and salt just to compare.

Porage 3 March 2023.jpg

That's over 400 Calories!

I do want to get back on-topic and mention Alpha Geminorum (Castor) which is a most INTERESTING star.

In historical times brighter than Pollux, hence the Alpha designation according to Sir Patrick Moore.

Castor AB resolved.png

A telescopic double (AB 6'' separation, Magnitude 1.9 and 3.0) which even I might attempt to resolve with my toy telescope, it is in fact SIX stars, and an exotic example of the solvable restricted three body problem.

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I read that the Castor system consists of 6 stars, which are organised in 3 close binaries which then orbit each other.

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Clearly debateable, Galu. I distrust neat circular solutions.

A and B orbit in 445 years, C goes round And B in 14,000 years.

I prefer this speculative more elliptical solution, which is also a restricted three body problem.

Castor 6 star system.jpg

Other 6 star systems have been discovered:

6 star system.jpg

A and C orbit each other in 4 years, they orbit B in 2,000 years. The central point must be the centre of mass of the whole conglomorate.

And there is a proof by Laplace or Lagrange (Can't remember...) that the n-body solution always tends towards a larger and larger overall radius of the system.

The small binaries orbit in a matter of days. Thus don't affect things too much.

The overall idea is it is effectively a 2 body problem to be reasonably stable. It's not wildly different to the Earth and Moon going round the sun.
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I think enough has been said about Porage now. I am keen to continue vaguely on-topic.

Firstly, more disappointing news for the European Space project. Another of our rockets has blown up taking two valuable satellites with it:

Vega-C Rocket Failure.jpg

At this rate, the American Cousins are a shoo-in to win the latest Moon Race!

Was it only three weeks ago we were using my Portsmouth Observatory widefield camera to watch the Venus, Moon, Jupiter conjunction?

An update into the current situation. Jupiter is slipping away lower into the twilight. Venus continues to rise and brighten and shall present an easily observed Moon-like crescent by late June. Moon long gone to the last quarter.

Venus and Jupiter 1900 14 Mar 2023.jpg

I will make an attempt to resolve Alpha Geminorum ( Castor in the Constellation of Gemini ) tonight into a double star with my toy telescope. The skies look clear for a change.
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I saw an episode of "Abandoned Engineering" on the Yesterday channel and was intrigued by Project HARP, short for High Altitude Research Project.


The giant HARP space gun in Barbados, shown above, was capable of firing a Martlet projectile 57 miles into the sky - well into the ionosphere.


Shades of Jules Verne, but without the human passengers!


On November 18, 1966, a HARP gun at the Yuma Proving Ground in Arizona launched an 84 kg Martlet 2 missile at 4698 mph, sending it briefly into space and setting a world altitude record of 111 miles. This has remained the world altitude record for any fired projectile.