August 31, 2010
Confucius Bonk

It seems that, with very little fanfare, China has figured out how to rendezvous two satellites in orbit. This is nowhere near as easy as it would at first appear. Imagine two cars, going around a very large circle. The gas pedal is locked down, and the brake doesn't work very well. Now, figure out how to make one car just barely tap the other's bumper.

Now do it somewhere north of 10,000 mph.

Posted by scott at August 31, 2010 09:15 PM

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The 10K mph figure is somewhat misleading. A better measurement is delta V.

Posted by: Ron ap Rhys on September 1, 2010 11:10 AM

We'll probably sell the GPS network to them in a few years, once it gets too expensive for us to maintain without NASA. Might even be able to pay for another stimulus with the money.

Posted by: Tatterdemalian on September 2, 2010 12:31 PM
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