Space & Planetary Science: March 2005 Archives

AGU Rallies The Troops

AGU Space Physics & Aeronomy Section Memo: Subject: Action Needed - Future of Science at NASA

"The upcoming confirmation hearings of Michael Griffin, President Bush's nominee to become the new NASA administrator, present a tremendous opportunity for us to raise important questions about the future of science at NASA."

Amendment No. 5 to the NASA Research Announcement (NRA) entitled "Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences (ROSES) 2005," NNH05ZDA001N, Released January 28, 2005

- This amendment cancels the solicitation for the Virtual Observatories for Solar and Space Physics Data program described in Appendix A.22.
- This amendment cancels the solicitation for the Astrophysics Data Analysis program described in Appendix C.2.
- This amendment cancels the solicitation for the Long Term Space Astrophysics program described in Appendix C.3

NASA'S Spitzer Marks Beginning of New Age of Planetary Science

"In the new studies, Spitzer has directly observed the warm infrared glows of two previously detected "hot Jupiter" planets, designated HD 209458b and TrES-1. Hot Jupiters are extrasolar gas giants that zip closely around their parent stars."

Detection of Thermal Emission from an Extrasolar Planet, arXiv.org e-Print archive

20 February 2005: NASA Cassini Image: Dione and Titan, SpaceRef

"This image was taken on February 18, 2005 and received on Earth February 19, 2005. The camera was pointing toward DIONE at approximately 1,267,945 kilometers away..."

17 March 2005: Art and Science, NASA JPL

"The image was taken in visible green light with the Cassini spacecraft narrow-angle camera on Feb. 18, 2005, at a distance of approximately 1.3 million kilometers (808,000 miles) from Dione ..."

Editor's note: Here we go again: Why does it take JPL so long to get around to making note of all of these amazing images arriving from Saturn? Well, if you don't want to wait weeks for JPL to post them, just check out Saturn Today. We check daily for new images - and then make note of them - daily.

NASA Plans to Turn Off Several Satellites, Science (subscription)

"NASA intends to stop operating more than a half-dozen existing science probes at the end of this year, including the famed Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft now racing toward the edge of the solar system. Although space agency officials say no final decisions have been made, the agency's 2006 budget request includes no money for a host of solar and space physics projects that currently cost a total of $23 million annually."

Editor's note: This is certainly shortsighted on NASA's part: humanity shuts down two interstellar probes for want of a trivial amount of money in the overall scheme of things. Perhaps the Drake equation - you know, the one that is used by some to estimate the prevalence and lifespan of technological civilizations in the cosmos - should have a new variable added: budget.

Martian Mix-up

Twin Mars rovers in instrument mix-up, New Scientist

"NASA's Mars rovers Opportunity and Spirit are identical twins - so alike that they even fooled NASA. Researchers have discovered that they sent the robots to Mars with an instrument meant for Opportunity inside Spirit and vice versa."


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This page is an archive of entries in the Space & Planetary Science category from March 2005.

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