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#51 2005-06-06 12:04:45

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Probably could be done with some sort of adaptive optics to see the air currents, overhead satelite views of torrain for up draft currents and other weather issues.

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#52 2005-06-06 13:32:21

dicktice
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From: Nova Scotia, Canada
Registered: 2002-11-01
Posts: 1,764

Re: Airplanes on Mars

Probably could be done with some sort of adaptive optics to see the air currents, overhead satelite views of torrain for up draft currents and other weather issues.

We of the thermal soaring (i.e. glider) persuasion have been praying for that capability for decades. What do you know that we don't?

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#53 2005-06-06 19:02:14

srmeaney
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

How about an acetelyle powered biplane?  entire thing assembled the way the old paper and wood ones were using but using mylar and aluminium? Advances in engine efficiency have allowed us to reduce engine weight. with fuel cell processing plants back at base, the crews could have a two seater as exposed to the elements as those early pioneers.

the Acetelyne fuel cell processing plant could use CO2 and H2O to produce C2H2 and Oxygen

That way we could have biplanes and zeppelins...

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#54 2005-06-07 06:08:40

dicktice
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From: Nova Scotia, Canada
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Home-built Airplanes of Mars: That has a nice ring to it.

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#55 2005-06-07 08:33:18

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Probably could be done with some sort of adaptive optics to see the air currents, overhead satelite views of torrain for up draft currents and other weather issues.

We of the thermal soaring (i.e. glider) persuasion have been praying for that capability for decades. What do you know that we don't?

From the old hubble thread:
The other part about adaptive optics is the atmospheric oscillation caused by air movement and density changes.
The use of Lasers to create a false star that gets measured in order to do the atmospheric cancellation from the star that we wish to observe is one of the more recent forms that it is done.

Astronomers make a star

The laser was propagated as the first step in a program to expand the fraction of sky available to the technique known as adaptive optics. Adaptive optics allows astronomers to correct for the fuzzy images produced by earth's moving atmosphere, giving them a view that often surpasses those of smaller telescopes based in space.
The adaptive-optics system uses the star as a source by which astronomers monitor and correct for the distortions produced by earth's atmosphere. To do so, they shine a narrow sodium laser beam up through the atmosphere. At an altitude of about 60 miles, the laser beam makes a small amount of sodium gas glow. The reflected glow from the glowing gas serves as the artificial guide star for the adaptive-optics system. The laser beam is too faint to be seen except by observers very close to the telescope, and the guide star it creates is even fainter.

Mount a laser on each wing tip to create the false star.
Use the false stars data to show the reflected air currents.
One laser could be near field while the other more distant.

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#56 2005-08-08 11:01:11

SpaceNut
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

While I did a search and it came up empty that does not mean that we have not talked of this. Which I know we have.
Mars “Gashopper” Takes Flight

The approach is to use store Co2 as a fuel.

h_gashopper_mars_03.jpg

The vehicle is dubbed the Gashopper and taps into the carbon dioxide-rich Martian atmosphere. Using a pump, it stores the gas in liquid form, sending it through a preheated pellet bed. That action transforms the liquid into hot rocket exhaust to produce thrust for a flight vehicle.

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#57 2005-08-08 12:45:14

John Creighton
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From: Nova Scotia, Canada
Registered: 2001-09-04
Posts: 2,401
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

While I did a search and it came up empty that does not mean that we have not talked of this. Which I know we have.
Mars “Gashopper” Takes Flight

The approach is to use store Co2 as a fuel.

h_gashopper_mars_03.jpg

The vehicle is dubbed the Gashopper and taps into the carbon dioxide-rich Martian atmosphere. Using a pump, it stores the gas in liquid form, sending it through a preheated pellet bed. That action transforms the liquid into hot rocket exhaust to produce thrust for a flight vehicle.

I think the grass hopper is a wonderful idea. Has the vehicle flown yet at altitudes that resemble mars air pressure? I wonder about landings too? How would test the landing of such a vehicle on earth?

edit: Speaking of landing is the vehicle show in the picture going to be very stable landing and taking off. Shouldn't there be gets on the wings to make it easy to keep the vehicle from rotating during lift off and touchdown.

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#58 2005-08-09 12:36:21

Palomar
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From: USA
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

While I did a search and it came up empty that does not mean that we have not talked of this. Which I know we have.

*Yep.  I can't find the former thread either; this is the only result from Search.  Cool, huh?  I just read about it at space.com's "Astronotes."

The description of how it operates sort of reminds me of a scramjet's propulsion method.  Wow, am I brave to say that.  tongue  Not trying to over-reach what I know about these specific sorts of things, just saying...(and yes, I am aware that a scramjet goes REALLY fast...)

--Cindy


We all know those Venusians: Doing their hair in shock waves, smoking electrical coronas, wearing Van Allen belts and resting their tiny elbows on a Geiger counter...

--John Sladek (The New Apocrypha)

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#59 2005-08-10 09:16:07

SpaceNut
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Lucky for me I did recall where I had seen this article before on another website.

Future Robots May "Hop" Across Mars

Part lander, part aircraft, the gashopper

2004-1125gashopper-lg.jpg

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#60 2005-08-17 06:39:20

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Here is another hopeful for being the first powered airplane flight on mars.
Reaching for the stars: Aurora aims to send first airplane to Mars

The MarsFlyer is a white and blue glider, roughly the size and shape of a hang glider. But while a hang glider just floats on the wind, the MarsFlyer is intended to be the first airplane to fly into the atmosphere of another planet, said Charles Wilkins, a spokesman for Aurora.

The company's concept is that the MarsFlyer would be delivered to the red planet by rocket. It would be dropped into the Martian atmosphere folded up inside a pod. It would then unfold itself and fly around the planet, taking pictures and surveying the landscape.

Aurora Flight Sciences MarsFlyer

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#61 2005-08-23 10:15:50

SpaceNut
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

I do not recal a scout mission thread but I think I have mentioned it in at least one here in this folder.
Mars Scout Program To Seek More Money For 2011 Mission

Many of these missions have not gone forward. I think the last active one was Phoenix lander.

Gee you think???

NASA's Mars Scout program is seeking more money in its fiscal 2007 budget request to allow for the per-mission cost cap to be raised from its original level of $325 million to a level above $400 million.

"I've recognized that that is an inadequate amount of money to get a reasonable-risk mission to Mars,"

Still possible aircraft in the works..

In addition to traditional orbiter and lander concepts, the next Scout competition is expected to see two proposals for flying unmanned aircraft on the red planet - Ames' MATADOR and Langley's ARES (DAILY, Aug. 9). McCuistion said he would not be surprised to see other innovative proposals, including surface penetrators, hoppers or walkers.

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#62 2005-08-24 08:36:24

Dragoneye
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From: Romeoville, IL
Registered: 2005-08-17
Posts: 100

Re: Airplanes on Mars

Personally the best idea idealy would be a blimp....

basicly all it would be is a box with a battery, lots of monitoring equiptment, fan, and a huge bag with Hydgrogen.

heck if you dropped it off just like they did with the rover, they could make the surface conducting so the blimp could land back in its spot, and recgarge with some of the solar panals that are out there on the initial unit of the ground unit.

heck, if you wanted to see something far off, you could always have a rocket that launches off of it and just fire it in that direction. have the rocket relay the couple thousand pics it took, and that replaces your need for a one time use plane with something a bit more permanent.

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#63 2005-09-16 12:54:23

publiusr
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

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#64 2005-10-14 12:35:29

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Probably could be done with some sort of adaptive optics to see the air currents, overhead satelite views of torrain for up draft currents and other weather issues.

We of the thermal soaring (i.e. glider) persuasion have been praying for that capability for decades. What do you know that we don't?

Well Here it is:
Robot Plane Can Find Thermals to Stay Aloft

2005-1006sailplane-1.jpg

NASA engineers tested out a prototype unmanned sailplane this week at the Dryden Flight Research Center in California. This robotic aircraft is capable of detecting and using rising air thermals, similar to a glider or bird, to gain altitude. It launched from the ground, and navigated to a likely location for updrafts. Once it found a thermal, it turned off its engine and circled to stay within the updraft. NASA hopes to develop techniques for using thermals that could extend the range of unmanned aerial vehicles that often have very limited fuel.

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#65 2005-12-02 15:28:06

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

The image with this article should look familar to many.
NASA Announces Planetary Science Vehicle Competition in collaboration with the California Space Education and Workforce Institute, Santa Maria, Calif., announced the Planetary Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Challenge. This new $250,000 competition may significantly affect how science is conducted on planets and moons with atmospheres.


The planetary challenge will award $250,000 to teams that can design and build an autonomously operating aerial vehicle to fly a roller-coaster flight path only using visual navigation systems. No Global Positioning System is allowed.

Sounds like first flight stuff...

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#66 2006-03-29 18:31:54

Mars_B4_Moon
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Registered: 2006-03-23
Posts: 349

Re: Airplanes on Mars

Students will do an unmanned Aerial vehicle for ESA's Mars mission ?

http://www.esa.int/esaCP/SEM6NN59CLE_index_0.html

Aerospace students are invited to submit their ideas for an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for Mars.

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#67 2006-11-27 11:23:27

cIclops
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Registered: 2005-06-16
Posts: 3,230

Re: Airplanes on Mars

Mars%20Flyer%203_index.jpg
Mars Advanced Technology Airplane for Deployment, Operations, and Recovery (MATADOR)

AFRL Tests Mars Flyer Concept

Multiple Mars UAV Proposals Likely In Next Scout Competition

Mars UAV proposals have been at a disadvantage when competing with orbiters, rovers, or landers because of their comparatively short mission duration. MATADOR is trying to compensate for this by developing a UAV that could survive its landing on Mars and continue to relay data or perform other measurements on the surface.

"The integrated concept we came up with is an airplane that has attitude control thrusters, so now it's essentially something like a Harrier," Gonzales said. The rocket thruster would pulse to keep the aircraft flying over Mars for 45 minutes to an hour, during which it would cover 300-400 kilometers (186-249 miles), according to Gonzales.

Previous Mars UAV concepts were designed to crash-land following their mission, which created a problem - because the UAV gathers sensor data faster than it can transmit it, recovering all the data requires a nearby relay or the construction of a black box-type recorder that can survive the crash.

MATADOR would attempt to survive its landing by performing a pull-up maneuver and then falling almost vertically to the ground, belly-first. "You wouldn't fly again, but your data is now safe onboard," Gonzales said. The UAV would now be able to transmit the rest of its data and possibly conduct additional measurements of the surface.


Let's go to Mars and far beyond -  triple NASA's budget !   #space channel !!    - videos !!!

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#68 2006-11-28 00:23:16

GCNRevenger
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From: Earth
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

I don't think I like the idea of the airplane-probe, it seems like it offers a bad mixture of low reliability, short mission duration, and development risk. The MERs have been going >10X their design life, but an airplane wouldn't have the possibility even. The short mission time also means that it will not be practical to issue much in the way of commands to look at something interesting. This is especially problematic if the launch site isn't very precise (eg a lander) to enable a "dumb" autopiloted mission. And of course you can't chemically sample anything with an airplane.

What happened to balloons? They can last a long time, they are pretty reliable, well understood, simple, and could either descend or drop a sample collector. Easy to power with thin-film polymer solar cells on the balloon too perhaps.


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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#69 2006-11-28 02:51:18

cIclops
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

On the plus side: IF it survives landing it could last a long time on the surface. The article talks about flying at 10,000 feet (3kms) - imaging from that height will be great, even a 5 mm lens will match the resolution of MRO in its 300 km orbit with the 50 cm HiRISE camera. Perhaps it can also carry a sensor that can sample the atmosphere. It's an exciting concept.

On the minus side: what will it do on the surface besides sending back the data recorded during its one hour flight?  Aerial deployment during reentry has never been done before on Mars and mission duration and payload are severely restricted. Is it worth $425 million for one hour of limited, unguided data acquisition? Probably not.


Let's go to Mars and far beyond -  triple NASA's budget !   #space channel !!    - videos !!!

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#70 2006-11-28 07:37:58

SpaceNut
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Posted: Tue Aug 24, 2004 10:47 am
There was a university with a scout mission that had a plane that inflated and would have the wings set hard due to epoxy that uv cured. But that mission was dropped from those that were still in the running at that time.

Posted: Tue Aug 31, 2004 4:01 am
I had remembered some other space planes for mars scout missions from various Universities. One has done the research needed to deploy after re-entry without landing to get ready to fly. It blew an inflatable set of wings up and then cured them in the martian atmosphere by UV.

http://www.space.com/spacenews/archive0 … 52703.html

University of Kentucky Innovative Wing Design Could Soar in Martian Skies

Sprout wings and fly

Dryden Research Engineering staffers and Projects personnel have been flying a deployable, inflatable wing technology demonstrator experiment.

Here is a nice link on the MIT Mars Airplane Project and more...

Airplane archive of stories

Mars Airplane Soars on Earth


In closing lots of research has been done in reguards to unmanned air flight and while more may be needed anything can be done given time and money.

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#71 2006-12-06 21:20:16

GCNRevenger
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From: Earth
Registered: 2003-10-14
Posts: 6,056

Re: Airplanes on Mars

On the plus side: IF it survives landing it could last a long time on the surface. The article talks about flying at 10,000 feet (3kms) - imaging from that height will be great, even a 5 mm lens will match the resolution of MRO in its 300 km orbit with the 50 cm HiRISE camera. Perhaps it can also carry a sensor that can sample the atmosphere. It's an exciting concept.

On the minus side: what will it do on the surface besides sending back the data recorded during its one hour flight?  Aerial deployment during reentry has never been done before on Mars and mission duration and payload are severely restricted. Is it worth $425 million for one hour of limited, unguided data acquisition? Probably not.

No kidding "probably not"  $425M could probably buy you a brand new copy of MRO that would last years, not minutes or hours.

And if you want to sample the atmosphere, you do the same thing you do on Earth, you send a balloon! A nice cheap, long-lasting, reliable, proven balloon.

Airplane probes are an awful idea! NASA should pull the plug immediately.

This is just another flaky idea by engineers with an extremely overactive "but it'll be cool!" factor and a dubious grip on reality.


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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#72 2007-01-08 20:11:58

SpaceNut
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

NASA Selects Proposals for Future Mars Missions and Studies

On Monday, NASA selected for concept study development two proposals for future robotic missions to Mars. These missions would increase understanding of Mars' atmosphere, climate and potential habitability in greater detail than ever before.

In addition, NASA also will fund a U.S. scientist to participate in a proposed European Mars mission as well as fund instrument technology studies that could lead to further contributions to future Mars missions.

NASA Langley plane eliminated from mission to Mars

NASA Announces 2011 Mars Scout Proposals

The chosen mission would have to launch by 2011 at a cost of no more than $475 million.

NASA also announced Jan. 8 that it will spend $800,000 for St. Louis-based Washington University researcher Alicia Wang to participate as a member of the science team for the European Space Agency’s 2013 ExoMars mission.

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#73 2007-01-12 07:38:59

SpaceNut
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

Project's flight is canceled - for now

A change in NASA's focus results in Langley researchers missing their chance to fly an airplane on Mars.

NASA administrators gave the project - the Aerial Regional-scale Environmental Survey of Mars, or ARES - the highest rating for the quality of its science. Joel Levine explained that NASA administrators realized - after they asked for a range of project ideas to explore Mars - that they wanted this particular mission to focus on aeronomy, the study of the upper atmosphere.

NASA chose two other projects to compete for the 2011 mission, which will be financed with $475 million. A winner will be chosen from the two finalists this year.

NASA had planned a mission to study the Red Planet's upper atmosphere in 2013 at a projected cost of $1 billion. So when two proposals came in focused on aeronomy, with a budget of $475 million, NASA decided to grab the chance for a less-expensive aeronomy mission sooner.

Levine estimated that $157 million of the total budget would have been funneled to Langley over the next five years, with about half of that for salaries.

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#74 2007-01-12 07:54:19

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Airplanes on Mars

NASA selects proposals for future Mars missions

Each Mars mission proposal will receive initial funding of approximately $2 million to conduct a nine-month implementation feasibility study. Following these detailed mission concept studies, NASA intends to select one of the two proposals by late 2007 for full development as a Mars Scout mission. The mission developed for flight would have a launch opportunity in 2011 and cost no more than $475 million.

The selected Mars mission proposals are:

Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission, or Maven: The mission would provide first-of-its-kind measurements, address key questions about Mars climate and habitability, and improve understanding of dynamic processes in the upper Martian atmosphere and ionosphere. The principal investigator is Dr. Bruce Jakosky, University of Colorado, Boulder. NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md., will provide project management.


The Great Escape mission: The mission would directly determine the basic processes in Martian atmospheric evolution by measuring the structure and dynamics of the upper atmosphere. In addition, potentially biogenic atmospheric constituents such as methane would be measured. The principal investigator is Dr. Alan Stern, Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, Colorado. Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, will provide project management.

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#75 2007-01-12 10:14:12

GCNRevenger
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From: Earth
Registered: 2003-10-14
Posts: 6,056

Re: Airplanes on Mars

Project's flight is canceled - for now

A change in NASA's focus results in Langley researchers missing their chance to fly an airplane on Mars.

NASA administrators gave the project - the Aerial Regional-scale Environmental Survey of Mars, or ARES - the highest rating for the quality of its science. Joel Levine explained that NASA administrators realized - after they asked for a range of project ideas to explore Mars - that they wanted this particular mission to focus on aeronomy, the study of the upper atmosphere.

NASA chose two other projects to compete for the 2011 mission, which will be financed with $475 million. A winner will be chosen from the two finalists this year.

NASA had planned a mission to study the Red Planet's upper atmosphere in 2013 at a projected cost of $1 billion. So when two proposals came in focused on aeronomy, with a budget of $475 million, NASA decided to grab the chance for a less-expensive aeronomy mission sooner.

Levine estimated that $157 million of the total budget would have been funneled to Langley over the next five years, with about half of that for salaries.

Good, no airplanes


"The power of accurate observation is often called cynicism by those that do not have it." - George Bernard Shaw

The glass is at 50% of capacity

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