Category Archives: nasa

Where to See a Retired Space Shuttle



NASA ended the Space Shuttle Program in July of 2011, when the Space Shuttle Atlantis made its return trip to Earth. The program lasted for 30 years, and had a total of 135 missions. There will not be any more opportunities for you to watch the launch of a Space Shuttle. However, it is still possible for you to take a look at a retired Space Shuttle.

What can you do with a Space Shuttle that will never go on another mission into outer space? You put it on public display! NASA has been making the necessary logistic arrangements in order to get some of the retired Space Shuttles to locations where people can go and see them.

The Space Shuttle Discovery will be moved to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. NASA will officially make the transfer of the Discovery into the Smithsonian’s collection on April 19, 2012.

Discovery made a total of 39 missions, which makes it the most-flown of all the Space Shuttles. It traveled 148,221,675 miles in space, spanned 5,830 orbits of Earth, and was in space for a total of 365 days. This is the shuttle that deployed the Hubble Space Telescope, and it was also the shuttle that went on the second mission to service and repair it.

The Space Shuttle Endeavour will be moved to the California Science Center in Los Angeles in the latter part of 2012. The Endeavour completed 25 missions. It traveled 122,883,151 miles in space, spanned 4,671 orbits of Earth, and was in space for a total of 229 days. This is the shuttle that went on the first mission to repair the Hubble Space Telescope.

The Space Shuttle Atlantis will be at the Kennedy Space Center. The exhibit will be open sometime in 2013. It will be located in the Shuttle Plaza at the main Visitor Complex. Again, this is the Space Shuttle that made the very last return mission home before the program ended. It completed a total of 33 missions. The Atlantis traveled 125,935,769 miles in space, spanned 4,848 orbits of Earth, and was in space for a total of 306 days. Its very last mission was to bring supplies to the International Space Station.

The Space Shuttle Enterprise will be at the Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum in New York City. The Space Shuttle Enterprise was the first full scale prototype of the Space Shuttles, and it never ended up making it into space. It was named after the USS Enterprise NCC-1701.

Image: Space Shuttle Flying Over Earth by BigStock


Curiosity Is On It’s Way To Mars



The big one we have all been waiting for is on it’s way.  The Mars Science Laboratory, better known as the Curiosity rover, lifted off yesterday from Florida and began it’s 8 and half month journey to the red planet.  Curiosity carries with it the hopes and dreams of, not just a lot of scientists and NASA engineers, but also a lot of average Americans who can only dream of this trip and what can be discovered there.

Carried into space on an Atlas 5 rocket, Curiosity, a rover the size of a car, will touch down in the Gale Crater and begin it’s systematic experiments in search of the building blocks of life on Mars.  Gale Crater is described by Universe Today as “one of the most scientifically interesting locations on the Red Planet because it exhibits exposures of clay minerals that formed in the presence of neutral liquid water that could be conducive to the genesis of life.”

The launch yesterday went off without a hitch and the rover is now on it’s way to the red planet.  Before you get too excited, Curiosity won’t discover life (if any), but only find if the necessary conditions are present.  Finding actual life will have to wait for the next mission.  As with all things this complicated, expensive, and time-consuming the scale of time is much greater than we all would like it to be.

You can watch a video of yesterday’s launch below.


Astra Satellite 3B



Ariane Rocket on LaunchpadThis is Real Art was commissioned in 2009 by the satellite operator SES- Astra to document the build of a new bird, the Astra 3B, at their factory in France and its subsequent launch.  Collaborating with photographer Simon Norfolk, they’ve produced a stunning series of photographs, a brochure and seven documentaries that show the commerical side of space.

If you want to go on the same journey as they did in producing the material, the best way is to follow their blog articles to the finished products.

Rocket Science (initial announcement)
Factory Visit
More Factory Visit (best photos are here)
Astra Documentary Films
Astra Brochure
Documentary Films  

Those of us in the UK of a certain age will no doubt recognise the film narrator Johnny Ball, who presented the science television programmes on the BBC when we were younger.

Astra Satellite Dishes

Satellite Testing

Spacesuits

Photos copyright SES Astra, This Is Real Art & Simon Norfolk.


Phoenix Mars Landing Coverage



I will be updating this Blog post throughout the day. This is an exciting day for science and space buff’s Phoenix begins it landing sequence a short time from now…

Discovery will be doing live coverage and NASA TV will be streaming as well. I have been watching the press coverage this morning and all systems are go for landing.

26 Pyro Events and a huge number of Mechanical events have to happen in the 7 minutes of terror during the de-orbit burn and landing. High risk for sure and hopefully all the CAD’s blow and the software does not crash during the landing..

  • 1830 EST Nasa TV is Live!
  • 1916 Propulsion Tank Pressurized
  • 1939 Cruise Stage Seperation
    • The NASA crew Thirilled
  • 1941 Turning for Entry
    • Phooenix has Switched to high rate data communications
  • 1946 Entry into the Atmosphere 7 Minutes to Landing
  • 1949 Parachute Deployment
    • This was a huge check point
  • 1950 Heat Shield Seperation
  • 1952 Lander Seperation
    • Thrusters Detected
  • 1953 Landing Awaiting word on Phoenix

Phoenix is on Mars and things so far look Really Good!!!

The lander is sitting flat, tanks are venting, next step we are waiting solar array deployment. Once the solar arrays deploy then phoenix will reach another major milestone.

Well as a post note the lander is in great shape and science collection will now commence on this 90 day mission. Unlike the rovers though this team has to work fast. As soon as winter comes the Phoenix is doomed as carbon dioxide ice a foot thick will shroud the lander.

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NASA is a go for STS-116 Launch!



Sts116NASA is a GO! Launch goes down in about 9 minutes will update as the launch proceeds.

 What a launch it was simply amazing with the Shuttle lighting up the evening sky in Florida with a clean separation of the solid rocket boosters.

N2

From my perspective looked like a very good launch now we will have to see what the tapes show. Here is some eye candy for you.


GNC-2006-12-01 #221



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Comments to 619-342-7365 e-mail to geeknews@gmail.com

Listener Links:
Microsoft Jabs Sony
www.MediaStoogesPro.com
Free BlackBerry Tips and Tricks for QWERTY Devices
oc.vox.com
www.radiose7en.com

Show Notes (Non Exclusive)
MPAA Pretexting
Shuttle
ISS
OpenSource Media Player
Hack a Blackberry!
Windows Vista – Office Launch
Russell Holliman
Microsoft Innovations
Want to go to CES?
Google Alerts
Podcasting and File Sharing
Firewalls
Streaming Cablecard
**James Kim and Family Missing**
Movie Snitch Devices
Fix iTunes Art
Free Office Templates
AllofmyMP3
Business email Rules
Mark Cuban
Cellphone unlocking?
Geek Toaster
BuoyBuilder
Word of the Year
Cellular and Google
HP-IQ770
My Number


GNC-2006-11-14 #216



Well we have another winner and he who won will be very surprised. I go after Microsoft and the Zune player in a big way tonight and I think you will agree with me they just don’t get it. Some serious Soap Box time tonight!

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Comments to 619-342-7365 e-mail to geeknews@gmail.com

Listener Links:
iGive.com
iPod user Thieves!
RIAA Humor
Congrats to our mystery second Winner

Show Notes:
RIAA Spin Machine
Response to RIAA
Black Friday
Windows WiFi Vulnerability
Crack a Combo Lock
Zune and Microsoft Points!
Method to Zune Madness
Zune Install HELL!
Zune and apparently no Microsoft Transparency!
GlobalRichList.com
Shoot Video Better
Notebook Fire
Breaking into a Mac!
New Media Picks
Conference Community
Dabble.com
TalkPlus.com
Pre-Roll not working!
Google Custom!
Mars Global Surveyor
Win a Island!
Astronauts Prepare
Bill Gates
Sun Dumb in RL versus SL
Vista & Office Hacked
YouTube Revolt