Ulysses (spacecraft)

Ulysses is a decommissioned robotic space probe whose primary mission was to orbit the Sun and study it at all latitudes. It was launched in 1990 and made three "fast latitude scans" of the Sun in 1994/1995, 2000/2001, 2007/2008. In addition, the probe studied several comets. Ulysses was a joint venture of NASA and the European Space Agency with participation from Canada's National Research Council; the last day for mission operations on Ulysses was June 30, 2009. To study the Sun at all latitudes, the probe needed to change its orbital inclination and leave the plane of the Solar System. To change the orbital inclination of a spacecraft to about 80° requires a large change in heliocentric velocity, the energy to achieve which far exceeded the capabilities of any launch vehicle. To reach the desired orbit around the Sun, the mission's planners chose a gravity assist maneuver around Jupiter, but this Jupiter encounter meant that Ulysses could not be powered by solar cells; the probe was powered instead by a radioisotope thermoelectric generator.

The spacecraft was named Odysseus, because of its lengthy and indirect trajectory to study the solar poles. It was renamed Ulysses, the Latin translation of "Odysseus", at ESA's request in honor not only of Homer's mythological hero but of Dante's character in the Inferno. Ulysses was scheduled for launch in May 1986 aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger on STS-61-F. Due to the loss of Challenger, the launch of Ulysses was delayed until October 6, 1990 aboard Discovery; the spacecraft body was a box 3.2 × 3.3 × 2.1 m in size. The box mounted the 1.65 m dish antenna and the GPHS-RTG radioisotope thermoelectric generator power source. The box was divided into quiet sections; the noisy section abutted the RTG. "loud" components, such as the preamps for the radio dipole, were mounted outside the structure and the box acted as a Faraday cage. Ulysses was spin-stabilised about its z-axis which coincides with the axis of the dish antenna; the RTG, whip antennas, instrument boom were placed to stabilize this axis, with the spin rate nominally at 5 rpm.

Inside the body was a hydrazine fuel tank. Hydrazine monopropellant was used for course corrections inbound to Jupiter, used to repoint the spin axis at Earth; the spacecraft was controlled by eight thrusters in two blocks. Thrusters were pulsed in the time domain to perform translation. Four Sun sensors detected orientation. For fine attitude control, the S-band antenna feed was mounted off-axis; this offset feed combined with the spacecraft spin introduced an apparent oscillation to an radio signal transmitted from Earth when received on board the spacecraft. The amplitude and phase of this oscillation were proportional to the orientation of the spin axis relative to the Earth direction; this method of determining the relative orientation is called conical scanning and was used by early radars for automated tracking of targets and was very common in early infrared guided missiles. The spacecraft used S-band for uplinked commands and downlinked telemetry, through dual redundant 5-watt transceivers.

The spacecraft used X-band for science return, using dual 20 W TWTAs until the failure of the last remaining TWTA in January 2008. Both bands used the dish antenna with prime-focus feeds, unlike the Cassegrain feeds of most other spacecraft dishes. Dual tape recorders, each of 45-megabit capacity, stored science data between the nominal eight-hour communications sessions during the prime and extended mission phases; the spacecraft was designed to withstand both the heat of the inner Solar System and the cold at Jupiter's distance. Extensive blanketing and electric heaters protected the probe against the cold temperatures of the outer Solar System. Multiple computer systems are used in several of the scientific instruments, including several radiation-hardened RCA CDP1802 microprocessors. Documented 1802 usage includes dual-redundant 1802s in the COSPIN, at least one 1802 each in the GRB, HI-SCALE, SWICS, SWOOPS and URAP instruments, with other possible microprocessors incorporated elsewhere.

Total mass at launch was 366.7 kg. Radio/Plasma antennas: Two beryllium copper antennas were unreeled outwards from the body, perpendicular to the RTG and spin axis. Together this dipole spanned 72 meters. A third antenna, of hollow beryllium copper, was deployed from the body, along the spin axis opposite the dish, it was a monopole antenna, 7.5 meters long. These measured radio waves generated by plasma releases, or the plasma itself as it passed over the spacecraft; this receiver ensemble was sensitive from DC to 1 MHz. Experiment Boom: A third type of boom and much more rigid, extended from the last side of the spacecraft, opposite the RTG; this was a hollow carbon-fiber tube, of 50 mm diameter. It can be seen in the photo, it carried four types of instruments: a solid-state X-ray instrument, composed of two silicon detectors, to study X-rays from solar flares and Jupiter's aurorae. Body-Mounted Instruments: Detectors for electrons, neutral gas and cosmic rays were mounted on the spacecraft body around t

Miracle Mile (film)

Miracle Mile is a 1988 American apocalyptic thriller film written and directed by Steve De Jarnatt, starring Anthony Edwards and Mare Winningham. The film takes place in real time, it is named after the Miracle Mile neighborhood of Los Angeles, where most of the action takes place. The film takes place in a single night; the film opens with the two main characters and Julie, meeting at the La Brea Tar Pits and falling in love. After spending the afternoon together, they make a date to meet after her shift ends at midnight at a local coffee shop, but a power failure means Harry's alarm fails to wake him and Julie leaves for home; when Harry awakes that night he realizes what has happened and rushes to the shop, arriving at 4 AM. Harry tries to call Julie on a pay phone, but only reaches her answering machine, where he leaves an apology; when the phone rings moments he picks it up, hearing a frantic man named Chip telling his father that nuclear war is about to break out in less than seventy minutes.

When Harry gets a chance to talk and asks, calling, Chip realizes he has dialed the wrong area code. Chip pleads with Harry to call his father and apologize for some past wrong before he is being confronted and shot. An unfamiliar voice picks up the phone and tells Harry to forget everything he heard "and go back to sleep" before disconnecting. Harry and not convinced of the reality of the information, wanders back into the diner and tells the other customers what he has heard; as the patrons scoff at his story, one of them, a mysterious businesswoman named Landa, calls a number of politicians in Washington on her wireless phone and finds that they are all heading for "the extreme Southern Hemisphere". After Harry tells her some launch codes that Chip told him, she verifies that they are real and, convinced of the danger charters private jets out of Los Angeles International Airport to a compound in a region in Antarctica with no rainfall. Most of the customers and staff leave with her in the owner's delivery van.

When the owner refuses to make any stops, unwilling to leave without Julie, arranges to meet the group at the airport and jumps from the truck. Harry is helped and hindered by various strangers, who are unaware of the impending apocalypse. In the process he inadvertently causes several deaths and is shaken by that, yet still he goes on; when he finds Julie and tells her, she notes that there is no confirmation of the attack. Desperate to reach the airport and not having a car, Harry finds a helicopter pilot and tells him to meet them on the roof of the Mutual Benefit Life Building, where Landa ordered a helicopter and a large amount of supplies to be delivered. Julie has tried to find a pilot on her own, in the moments it takes to find her, Los Angeles descends into violent chaos. There is still no confirmation any of this is real, Harry wonders if he has sparked a massive false panic in the example of Chicken Little. However, when he uses a phone booth to contact the father of the man who called him, he reaches a man who says his son is a soldier.

Harry tries to pass on the message he was given. When they reach the top of the Mutual Benefit building they find the pad empty, the roof manned only by Landa's drunk co-worker. Any doubts about a false alarm are eliminated; as they fear the end, the helicopter returns with the pilot badly wounded but fulfilling his promise to come back for them. After they lift off from the roof, several warheads hit and the nuclear electromagnetic pulse from the detonations causes the helicopter to crash into the La Brea pits; as the helicopter sinks and the cabin fills with natural asphalt tar, Harry tries to comfort a hysterical Julie by saying someday they will be found and they will be put in a museum, or maybe they will take a direct hit and be turned into diamonds. Julie, accepting her fate, calms down and takes comfort in Harry's words, the movie fades out as the tar fills the compartment. A final explosion seems to imply. Before Miracle Mile was made, its production had been legendary in Hollywood for ten years.

In 1983, it had been chosen by American Film magazine as one of the ten best unmade screenplays. Steve De Jarnatt wrote it just out of the American Film Institute for Warner Brothers with the hope of directing it as well; the studio wanted to make it on a bigger scale and did not want to entrust the project with a first-time director like De Jarnatt. Miracle Mile spent three years in production limbo until De Jarnatt optioned it himself, buying the script for $25,000, he rewrote it and the studio offered him $400,000 to buy it back. He turned them down; when he shopped it around to other studios, they balked at the mix of romance and nuclear war and the film's downbeat ending. At one point, it nearly became the script for the separate made Twilight Zone: The Movie. Before Anthony Edwards was cast, production nearly began with both Nicolas Kurt Russell. Of the script, Edwards said, "It scared the hell out of me, it made me angry too... I just couldn't believe that somebody had written this." John Daly of Hemdale Films gave De Jarnatt $3.7 million to make the film.

Edwards recalled: That was a script that everybody wanted to make, but they wanted him to change the ending. It was this great adventure, but he stuck it out, luckily he stuck it out long enough that I was old enough to play the part. [Laughs

Conservatoire national de musique

Conservatoire national de musique was a music conservatory in Montreal, Quebec, providing higher education in music during the first eight decades of the 20th century. Founded in 1905 by Alphonse Lavallée-Smith as the Conservatoire national de musique et de l'élocution, the school gained the official right to teach music, elocution and painting and to grant diplomas through a 1906 letters patent from Secretary of State Richard William Scott. A few years it was renamed the Consservatoire national Ltée. By 1912 the conservatoire had granted 250 diplomas. Jean-Noël Charbonneau served as the school's director from 1915-1922 followed by Benoît Poirier from 1923-1925. In 1921 the conservatoire became affiliated with the Université de Montréal and from here on was known as the Conservatoire national de musique. Eugène Lapierre, the conservatory's secretary since 1922, was appointed the school's director kn 1927, a post he held until 1970, he notably reorganized the institution in the model of a European conservatory in 1928, having visited numerous European school's from 1924-1927.

This restructuring was made possible through the generous financial support of Edmond Archambault of Archambault Musique and Joseph Versailles, through the administrative help of Lapierre's brother Albert, Alexandre d'Aragon, Antonio Létourneau. In 1951 the conservatoire resumed independent management. Élise Chapdelaine, secretary since 1940, served as interim director following Lapierre's death in 1970. Édouard Woolley, a graduate of the institution, was director in 1971-5 and was succeeded by the school's last director, Chapdelaine