Thursday, June 23, 2005

Bark: Cosmos-1

This caught my eye on the BBC News website. It's not the specifics about the spacecraft that interested me - the concept of a solar sail has been around for decades - it's more how they tried to get the vehicle into orbit.

At last, a worthwhile use for all those billions of dollars/rubles spent on building all those ICBMs! Though I suppose it's a little bit worrying that the missile itself failed to get beyond first stage ignition - if it can't put a spacecraft into orbit, it certainly could never have hit its target in a nuclear war. So much for the nuclear deterrent! Still, it could be an innovative way of getting rid of the world's nuclear arsenal - never mind about the warheads, just get rid of the rockets! Heaven forbid that the Russians forget to tell the Yanks that they're launching a satellite from one of their submarines, though...
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