Astronomy: September 2017 Archives

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope to be Launched Spring 2019

"The change in launch timing is not indicative of hardware or technical performance concerns," said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate at Headquarters in Washington. "Rather, the integration of the various spacecraft elements is taking longer than expected." ... The additional environmental testing time of the fully assembled observatory--the telescope and the spacecraft--will ensure that Webb will be fully tested before launching into space. All the rigorous tests of the telescope and the spacecraft to date show the mission is meeting its required performance levels. Existing program budget accommodates the change in launch date, and the change will not affect planned science observations."

- Webb, The Giant Money Sponge, earlier post (2010)
- GAO Assessment of NASA Includes a Look at Webb's Overruns, earlier post (2012)
- TRW Selected as Prime Contractor To Build NASA's James Webb Space Telescope, earlier post (2002)

Arecibo Post-Hurricane Status

Keith's note: This memo from the SETI Institute captures the latest from Arecibo: "The Arecibo Observatory, like the rest of Puerto Rico, was subjected to Hurricane Maria earlier this week: A group of the observatory staff has been sheltering on-site since Tuesday. Internet and telephone connections from the observatory went down Tuesday night, and remain down. Two members of the observatory staff, Angel Vasquez and Joe Taylor, are ham radio operators and have managed to get messages from the observatory to the city of Arecibo and from there off of the island (Angel is safe at his home in Arecibo, where the power grid is down and most of the roads are impassable). Everyone at the observatory is safe; but the road out of the observatory is blocked with downed trees, fallen rocks, and washouts. There has been significant but not catastrophic damage to the telescope: https://twitter.com/nadiamdrake/status/910999390709354496. Other observatory staff members who were sheltering at their homes across the island have been checking in, although not everyone has been accounted for yet. It will be several days before the road to the observatory can be cleared. The group at the observatory has food for a week, their own water supply, and enough fuel to keep the on-site generators running for a few weeks. Additional information from the observatory should be available over the next couple of days."

Rough Weather Ahead For Arecibo


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This page is an archive of entries in the Astronomy category from September 2017.

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