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Print 53 comment(s) - last by Argon18.. on Feb 24 at 12:41 PM

Extreme temperatures killed it

RIP lunar rover Yutu.
 
According to New Scientist, China's lunar rover Yutu -- also called Jade Rabbit -- was pronounced dead this week, ending its three-month mission to the moon earlier than expected. 
 
The cause of death was exposure to extreme temperatures, as a malfunction prevented Yutu from protecting its sensitive systems through the moon's daytime highs and nighttime lows. 
 
Yutu made its way to the moon December 14, 2013 when it hitched a ride from China's Chang'e-3 lander. Yutu successfully entered hibernation mode the first lunar night, where a mast folds down and a radioactive heat source protect delicate instruments. A solar panel is also angled towards the point where the sun will rise, which keeps up Yutu's power levels. 
 
It's important to note that a lunar night lasts for half of each Earthly month. Also, surface temperatures fluctuate from daytime highs of 90 °C to below -180 °C.
 
The second lunar night came January 25, and while the lander successfully went into hibernation, Yutu was unable to enter the sleep mode crucial for protecting itself from the dangerous temperatures.


Yutu [SOURCE: Universe Today]

All China could do was wait until the new lunar day, which began Monday. It's impossible to communicate with Yutu during a lunar night. 
 
As it turns out, Yutu couldn't handle the temperature fluctuations, and was declared dead this week. 
 
China's space agency believes lunar dust might've caused the malfunction, since the grains have sharp edges capable of interrupting Yutu's daily operations. 
 
Back in 2011, China released a paper that described China's five-year plan, which consisted of the construction of space stations, space laboratories, ship freighters and a manned spaceship. 
 
China said it planned to use probes to explore the moon's surface as well as asteroids, planets and the sun. A spacecraft will also be used to study black holes and celestial bodies close to Earth. Space debris will be studied as well in an effort to create systems that protect spacecraft from such debris.
 
The paper added that China hopes to improve launch vehicles, meteorological satellites, communications and broadcasting to form a global satellite navigation system.

Source: New Scientist



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RE: Expected
By mg7marine on 2/12/2014 3:46:30 PM , Rating: 2
I have Harbor Freight tools that have lasted me for years... Whereas the Craftsman ones I bought... have broken in days.


RE: Expected
By ipay on 2/12/2014 4:05:46 PM , Rating: 1
Days is a subset of years. Both have broken in days... only a matter of amount.


RE: Expected
By Manch on 2/12/2014 5:01:20 PM , Rating: 2
Is it because they are crappy so you leave them in the drawer never to be used again and go to your trusty Craftsman tools instead?

I bet you're nodding your head in agreement right now lololol

Ill go to harbor freight for something i need to use just once and not worth investing money into, or for my set aside tool box for people that want to borrow my tools.(They dont know the diff)

My craftsman, Husky, MAC, SNAP ONs, etc, they will never touch. If you cant look at a bolt and ball park the size wrench I need, or referr to everything as a thingamajiggy you're not worthy :D


RE: Expected
By mg7marine on 2/12/2014 5:14:27 PM , Rating: 2
I rebuild engines, etc., and have had no problems with the Pittsburgh ratchets, wrenches, or torque wrenches. You can also look at the article from Carcraft magazine here... http://www.carcraft.com/techarticles/ccrp_1304_tor...

I have some "old" Craftsman tools... but the new ones just don't cut it.


RE: Expected
By Manch on 2/12/2014 5:41:57 PM , Rating: 2
Dude, I was just yanking your chain a bit. I work on cars and motorcycles as well. Last build was my own. My torque wrenches are Armstrongs. Good wrenches.

For light duty Im sure your HF tools are fine. Im sure they are better at putting together IKEA furniture than the stamped wrench they put in the box but for anything else nope, I wont trust them.

All tools will bend out or break. I think I've managed to break a tool from damn near every single brand I've owned throughout. Nice thing bout snap on and MAC is they will deliver you replacements. Sears, yeah you have to run down to the store. Also I find a lot of HF wrenches to be lacking in accuracy. They dont always fit proper and a rounded out bolt or nut is not somthing i enjoy dealing with. It's a quality issue for me. I'd rather pay to ensure im buying something decent that save a few bucks just to regret it later.

I agree taht the old craftsmn wrenches seem to hold out better than the newer ones. Dunno why. If you want those for cheap, estate sales in the country. Get there early and bring cash!

If you like your HF tools tho, cool bro.


RE: Expected
By Argon18 on 2/24/2014 12:17:05 PM , Rating: 2
"I agree taht the old craftsmn wrenches seem to hold out better than the newer ones. Dunno why."

I know exactly why. It's called bean-counters. Some bean-counter ran the numbers and found that it was more cost-effective to lower the tool quality (i.e. cheaper metallurgy, lower pressure forgings, etc) and deal with the higher broken-replacement rate. The bean counter is right. People who buy Crapsman tools are usually happy homeowner types who do not stress the tool and will never break one. Real mechanics who use tools for a living avoid the new Crapsman like the plague, the quality is far too poor.


RE: Expected
By WeslyC on 2/15/2014 1:05:07 AM , Rating: 2
I've own both and no doubt, Craftsman tools are much better quality. Anyway, space programs are risky business that why I kinda feel nervous for the crew of China future man mission, so far China did an excellent job to land a rover on the moon even those it life was short.


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