MachinePix Weekly #49

This week's most popular post was a terrifying piece of aerospace technology. Next week, a new special issue format 📚🤓

Next week I’ll be experimenting with a new special issue format, stay tuned 😬

The most popular post this week was a nail-biting video of a helicopter ejecting its crew through the space its main rotor blades occupied just seconds (milliseconds?) before.

I struggled to identify the helicopter in the video: the only operational helicopter with ejection seats is the Russian Ka-50 “Black Shark”, which sports a distinctive coaxial rotor system that is glaringly absent from the video. Luckily, some clever followers pointed out it was likely a Sikorsky S-72 Rotor Systems Research Aircraft, a strange mutt which could fly like a fixed wing without rotors or like a helicopter with rotors—and had ejection seats—along with a distinctive five-blade main rotor and high engine mounts—visible in the video. Thank you followers!

I’m always looking for interesting people to interview, have anyone in mind?


The Week in Review

Heavy transport systems have been featured in previous issues, and they never fail to boggle the mind. From a friend and SpaceX engineer: Starships are so large that their manufacturing and transport pose unique constraints for manufacturing and transport locations. Also, Starship is both the name of the second stage or the first and second stage together—the first stage alone is called the Super Heavy. Internally, the first stage was also called the BFR (Big Fucking Rocket) and the second stage was also called the BFS (Big Fucking Ship).

This video is even cooler with LoFi beats overlaid, which reminds me of my favorite trance DJ and industrial automation channel: INDUSTRIAL JP

This is great when trees are relatively young. Otherwise, transporting a tree is much harder.

You can actually buy tiny screened shirts—and other tiny things—from the creator’s fantastically whimsical Etsy store.

I had to check and double check this wasn’t CGI. The sculptor’s DJ equipment is even more unsettling. Yikes.


My friend Maryanna invited me to her office, which also happens to be an amazing collection of space paraphernalia. I catalogued some of my favorite parts in a Twitter thread:

Twitter avatar for @kaneKane @kane
The office is also an amazing space museum, thread of some of my favorite bits: ImageImage

If you enjoyed this newsletter, forward it to friends (and interesting enemies). I am always looking to connect with interesting people and learn about interesting machines—reach out.