Tuesday, April 17, 2007

A Steep Learning Curve

Just one week ago I made a laughable gaffe in suggesting, in an obscure reference to uranium enrichment, that I should use Aluminum tubes to form my graphite "lead".

Wrong! Graphite is corrosive when it comes in contact with aluminum. Maybe that's the real reason that NASA uses pens in space.

Also, Graphite is a very different thing in a zero-g environment, and I must be careful when milling graphite. Don't inhale!


WoodChuck said...

I am sure you've heard the story about NASA spending millions in the 60s to invent a pen that could write in space, now sold as the Fisher Space Pen. The Russians just used a wood cased pencil.

Tyler Farrer said...

Yes, I also heard that it was a myth, and that the problem of having a pencil in space is that graphite bits could harm the instrumentation.