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1E10m Hubble Stereo

Put another Hubble 90 degrees out of phase in Earth Orbit
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In astronomy, the power of stereo vision is enhanced the further the detectors are from each other. The NRAO Very Large Array is a great example.

So, the idea here is to launch 2 space based telescopes (outside of our atmosphere). One will just orbit the earth, staying close. The other will follow Earth's orbit around the sun, but be 90 degrees out of phase (trailing behind us 3 months).

Then, the 2 telescopes can be instructed to point at the same region of space to collect data, and be approximately 1x10^10 meters apart. (~100 million miles).

That extremely wide stereo view would give us faster insights into what's out there, and what's in between us & the targets.

sophocles, Jun 19 2014

LaGrange points... http://en.wikipedia...a_Grange_%28song%29
...one of them being a brothel in the constellation Tejas. [normzone, Jun 19 2014]


       Yes, but why 90 degrees out of phase, rather than 180?
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 19 2014

       At 180 degrees out of phase, there are communications problems because your planet's primary is in the way. You then need relay stations.
8th of 7, Jun 19 2014

       What [MB] said.   

       and you could add a third one, in orbit around the Earth, as a subwoofer.
FlyingToaster, Jun 19 2014

       Yes, I was assuming a simple relay satellite wouldn't be a problem.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 19 2014

       Lagrange points'd be better though, minimize station-keeping.
FlyingToaster, Jun 19 2014

       At first I was thinking 180 out of phase. Then, I figured, we'd want to communicate with it, and the sun would get in the way.   

       Kind of like how I try to communicate with my wife, but our son keeps getting in the way.
sophocles, Jun 19 2014

       Well, that could mean interpreting "My son's a star" in a whole new way ...   

       Oh, and what [FT] said about the LaGrange points.
8th of 7, Jun 19 2014

       And what the link says about LaGrange points.
normzone, Jun 19 2014

       L4 & L5 (2 of the 5 lagrange points), are already in the same orbit as Earth, just out of phase a few degrees (not 90 exactly) (in the Earth/Sun simplified system).   

       I simplified it as "90 degrees" in the same orbit to avoid fellow HB readers from looking up Lagrange points & getting their heads wrapped up in that math.
sophocles, Jun 19 2014

       You are thinking too small. Put both telescopes on course toward the Oort Cloud, using solar sails. The niftiest thing about a solar sail is that if you have one big enough to counteract the gravitational attraction of the Sun, it will work to do that at ANY distance from the Sun. (Both light-pressure and gravitational attraction diminish in accordance with the Inverse Square Law.) A slightly bigger sail will let you increase your distance from the Sun. So, you can send the two telescopes on courses that are, say, 175 degrees apart, they can retract a little bit of sail and hover at any point between launch and the Oort Cloud, and the Sun basically won't be in the way.
Vernon, Jun 20 2014

       // to avoid fellow HB readers from looking up Lagrange points //   

       There's your mistake, right there. What about the ones that already know, and don't need to look it up ?   

       If you post any idea involving orbital mechanics, then inevitably someone is going to mention LaGrange. We note that a solar sail has made its appearance. A diversion mentioning Project Orion, slingshot orbits, and space elevators will now inevitably occur.
8th of 7, Jun 20 2014

       The (single) Hubble telescope already triangulates from approximately 180m miles as it takes images from opposite sides of Earth's orbit.
nuclear hobo, Jun 21 2014

       Something similar is the STEREO satellites from NASA for observing solar flares.   

       [+] depth perception of stars would be be GREAT to see
sninctown, Jun 21 2014

       //A diversion mentioning Project Orion, slingshot orbits, and space elevators will now inevitably occur.//   

       You forgot a liquid mercury telescope, miles wide, on the surface of the moon.
DIYMatt, Jun 22 2014


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