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introduction, eye contact 

AOS y'all!

I’m Laz, an aerospace engineer in LA who pretends to be a lizard or shark online.

I’m a big polyam-queer who loves talking to folks about science, co-hosting a science webcast on YouTube, building rockets in my garage, backpacking, camping, climbing tall mountains, overlanding my Jeep, nice shoes, and nice mohawks.

Always happy to chat with folks so hit me up!

Telegram: @/ROCKETLAZ
Discord: ROCKETLAZ#1765

[art by @/RAMIREZOID on twitter]


The area where I had the skin cancer on my nose removed is healing up really nicely. The biopsy confirmed it was skin cancer, but the growth outwards instead of down means it really had zero opportunity to even begin, my cancer was not smart, never have I ever been this happy that over my body doing something wrong, lol.

Will be doing follow-up visits every few weeks over the next 3 months to keep a close eye on the area and check that all of the cancer was removed. After that, it'll be biannual checks, but I'd like to step that up to quarterly checks considering one of my hobbies is being at high altitudes for long periods of time.

self-promotion, Spaceflight news show 

TMRO:News for this week is out! We cover some SpaceX booster landing problems, along with the addition of a crew member to the Inspiration4 mission. I cover RocketLab announcing their new Neutron rocket with their CEO literally eating his hat, Blue Origin delaying their New Glenn rocket, and the European Space Agency announcing their intention to select the first astronaut with a physical disability. We then cover NASA and Astra going to the TROPICS, Virgin Galactic further delaying SpaceShipTwo flights, and a slew of smallsat launchers grabbing up all the 3D printers. We then cover 3 launches in Space Traffic, and wrap up with this week's Space Weather update!

personal YouTube channel plug because here I come lol 

ps if you're not subscribed to my YouTube channel you should because here it comes roaring back to life...

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Mars exploration, me visiting JPL last year 

For all of you super interested in Mars exploration after the landing of Perseverance, I was at JPL last year a few days before they shipped Percy to The Cape.

Yes: I filmed it.

And yes, I take you places the public doesn't get access to:

Please let my girls in their beds cleanse this moment for you.

re: Perseverance mars rover landing video, looking up from Perseverance 

And here's the view of the Descent Stage from a camera on Perseverance looking up as it hovers via rockets while lowering Perseverance on cables for the Sky Crane maneuver.

This is my favorite video of all the ones taken. The Descent Stage is made for use on Mars, not Earth, so it really looks like a truly alien spacecraft.

There's no visible exhaust plume because the fuel used for the engines is hydrazine, which makes Nitrogen and Hydrogen gas as byproducts, which disperse to not be seen.

This is also the first time any of this system has been seen. Here on Earth we can test it piece-by-piece, but not entirely together, so no one has ever witnessed the actual Descent Stage+Sky Crane in action...until now...

It's nearly non-existent in engineering to have a system not entirely tested together be allowed to be used...let alone work...let alone work twice, with Curiosity using the same landing system in 2012.

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re: Perseverance mars rover landing video, look-down from the Descent Stage 

This camera is attached to the descent stage looking down at Perseverance as it is lowered on cables during the Sky Crane maneuver.

You don't want the rocket engines to go all the way to the surface, it they can kick up rocks, sand, and dust, at high enough velocities to damage the rover. So the designers at JPL developed the Sky Crane: lower the rover on a set of cables to a safe distance away from the exhaust plumes of the Descent Stage.

This is amazing, seeing a multi-billion dollar car-sized science system lowering ever so carefully to the surface of another planet.

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re: Perseverance mars rover landing video, look-down from the rover 

So this next video is from a camera attached to Perseverance looking down. It starts in darkness, and then we see the heat shield deployed and falling away, as it's not needed anymore.

Immediately landing radar begins to determine the altitude and velocity of the vehicle under the parachute.

During this time a new system of cameras is looking at the terrain of Mars below, comparing it to maps loaded onboard, and then determines where to fly the rover to land safely once it's released.

Perseverance is under parachute with that wobbling motion, but once it goes smooth and makes a hard turn, that's under the rocket-powered descent stage, which gets it down to the surface for the Sky Crane maneuver to deliver Perseverance to the surface, which is seen in the next set of videos I'll be posting.

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Perseverance mars rover landing video, parachute deploy 

So here's the view from camera looking up from the top of the aeroshell to capture deployment of the supersonic parachute.

The parachute deployment occurred at an altitude of 11km [7mi] while the vehicle was moving at Mach 1.8

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Probably the wildest stuff has been the footage from the entry-descent-landing cameras. They took still frames at a high enough rate that they could be stitched into videos. Allow me to show you the three coolest ones below, with a fourth reply to the link for the real-time video if you're interested in it.

This is absolutely mind-blowing stuff because this is the first time video of a spacecraft landing on another planet has been taken, and that spacecraft is the one that took it.

The entirety of my time awake since last week has been non-stop Perseverance mars rover focus. Like, it has been an EPIC week.


So what's been up since I had a lot happening last time: COVID stuck with me until the first week of February, just hanging on as a potent fatigue that would scattershot hit me whenever, sometimes hours after waking up, sometimes a handful of minutes after waking up, but every time it laid me out and destroyed me for the day.

So far so good for these past two weeks, feeling back to my "normal" baseline self, but I'm staying vigilant since there's always a chance it can come back.

re: Cancer - All set to remove it first week of February, but with linger COVID systems they pushed it out a week, and did so again as a pre-caution, but on Monday the bit of skin cancer finally got removed! It hadn't even penetrated the top layer of my skin, was growing outwards, not down, so big relief and I have a string of follow-ups over the next 12 months to check and recheck that it will not be growing back.

re: future NSFW art, horny 

I may be tired as fuck but that's not stopping me from being back on my paws/feets, socks, shoes, macro/micro bullshit horny again.

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re: future NSFW art 

Gonna be me bullying the artist with a specific pair of socks I have, and I gave the artist a lot of artistic freedom so I'm very excited to see what they do with it.

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re: future NSFW art 

I've been in this fandom for 15 years and this is only the third piece of horny with me in it that I’ve gotten, lol

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future NSFW art 

I got a slot for a horny commission of Laz and I am very excited!!!! !!!!!!

re: space news show, self-promotion 

Very proud of the "return to flight" pun I threw down since this is the first proper episode in 3 months and we had the SpaceX Starship test flight that proved the "bellyflop" works.

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space news show, self-promotion 

TMRO:News has returned! In our first episode for 2021, we cover the latest on SpaceX's launches and Starship tests, Lockheed Martin beginning the work to acquire Aerojet Rocketdyne, NASA's fumble of the Space Launch System's Green Run stage test, and a quick look at all the launches that have flown since 2021's start:

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