Skip to comments.On Target: NASA Rocket Slams Into Comet
Posted on 07/04/2005 8:49:59 AM PDT by KevinDavis
PASADENA, Calif. - It sounded like science fiction NASA scientists used a space probe to chase down a speeding comet 83 million miles away and slammed it into the frozen ball of dirty ice and debris in a mission to learn how the solar system was formed.
The unmanned probe of the Deep Impact mission collided with Tempel 1, a pickle-shaped comet half the size of Manhattan, late Sunday as thousands of people across the country fixed their eyes to the southwestern sky for a glimpse.
The impact at 10:52 p.m. PDT was cause for celebration not only to scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, but also for the more than 10,000 people camped out at Hawaii's Waikiki Beach to watch it on a giant movie screen.
"It's almost like one of those science fiction movies," said Steve Lin, a Honolulu physician.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Space ping me!!!!!
This is the kind of stuff NASA does so well. A great day for NASA and space science. Way to go!
Stayed up to watch it. Kudos to JPL.
NASA has been drifting and has been a political toy for Algore and others for a long time. However, this mission could be viewed as the first of the new NASA. This time, NASA will pay attention to PR. There is a lot of new stuff coming.
It has this caption::
The projectile was released on its collision path on Sunday. Essentially, the washing machine-sized object was pushed into the path of the mountainous block of ice, dust and rock.I guess I want to question the ice idea. This thing appears to be full of perfectly round craters. I don't think a block of ice would look like that if it were struck by some other object or objects.
It also contains carbon compounds. It has all that would be needed to support life as we know it. On the moon, for example, where water still hasn't been found for sure, but where putting a colony would be a good idea otherwise.
The washing machine hit the pickle.
I went to a dark sky site in California with a couple of friends last night. We had a 16" Newtonian telescope, but the comet was sooooo faint that it was a disappointment. Images from NASA's web site are much more satisfying.
However, there were some other things that were awesome! M13, The Swan, Lagoon, Triffid, Ring, The Veil, Jupiter, M81/M82... and, of course, wildflowers, bumble-bees and MOSQUITOS!!!
Next time, send politicians. All of them.
Would have been nice if the probe had had a second part that would have separated from the mother ship, stood back, and videoed the crash of the mother ship into the comet, then flown back to near earth to relay its pictures. Looking at it from earth is nice but we really could have used a 50-mile view.
You mean we didn't recruit an old time Japanese kamikaze pilot to do it?
Here's what you need: Bug Suit
I spent many a mosquito-filled morning in one like this waiting on the side of the Shuttle landing strip for the Orbiter to land.
The mosquitoes and no-see-ums there will carry you away if you're not covered. I also had a pair of mesh gloves. Had to operate cameras so I couldn't just put my hands in my pockets.
Ping me also.
That's a cool bug suit! I could have used it last evening. The skeeters were only bad for an hour or so, and then the bugs went away for the night.
We were at about 5300 feet, but the temp stayed fairly warm. I think it was about 60 deg. A very nice night for observing. The San Joaquin valley was very hazy though, and the light scatter was bad.
I never printed out a finder chart for the comet because my buddy said that he had the exact coordinates. Well then his digital setting circles on the 16" died, which made it a hard to find object. I pulled out my sky atlas and determined that the comet was about 3 deg. northeast of Spica, but all I could find there was a verrrry faint fuzzy. I'm guessing that was the comet because I swept all around there, and quadruple checked my coordinates on the sky map. We stayed till about midnight and then drove home 1.5/hrs. (yawn)
Shirley you're joking?
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