Cosmic Snowflakes, Is it snowing outside

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WeBeGood
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Joined: Thu Aug 03, 2006 7:26 am
Location: Texas, USA

Cosmic Snowflakes, Is it snowing outside

Post by WeBeGood »

the International Space Station?

For almost 50 years of man-made objects have been orbiting the Earth. How could something as common as a Snowflake go unnoticed for so long? Their impressions left on every satellite ever flown. Well, they can't. The impressions of their impacts should be everywhere, unlike an Earth bound snowflake that leaves only a wet spot on the window, a Cosmic Snowflake is moving much much faster. Fast enough to leave it's impression in the window.

For the entire lifetime of the Shuttle program, NASA has monitored impacts on the windows after every flight. Looking for impacts, measuring their size, tracking their location to determine if the window needs to be replaced. Then polishing the windows so they are picture perfect, ready for the next flight.

The windows on the Space Shuttle are no ordinary windows made of amorphous glass, but are instead made of quartz glass. A fused quartz window, extremely strong, heat resistant window to look out and see the wonders of Space and the Earth below. An impact of a Snowflake on such a window wouldn't even mar the surface, unless it had a little bit of dust in it.

Cosmic Snowflakes are moving so fast that they instantly melt, vaporize, and turn into plasma. They would impart a significant amount of energy by their impact. Leaving an impression within the fused quartz, crushing some small portion below the surface. The impression of a snowflake.

Impressions that have been monitored by Rocket Scientists to check the health of the windows. They show up as bruises within the quartz, windows bruised by the impact of a snowflake. Bruises, that can be seen in the right kind of light using the right kind of filter. A polarizing filter, that polarizes the light to look for the tell tail signs of a layer of crushed glass within a perfectly clear window.

This is the procedure that NASA developed to monitor the health of the Space Shuttle's windows.

So, if you see an Astronaut going to the International Space Station, ask him or her if it Snows up there. And when they start to laugh, tell them the best place to look is for their impressions in the windows and that they might need a polarizing filter to see them.
Courtesy E-Mail Welcome @ WeBeGood@GMail.Com

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