Space & Planetary Science: January 2007 Archives

NASA Solicitation: Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences - 2007

"NNH07ZDA001N, entitled "Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences - 2007 (ROSES-2007)," will be available on or about February 16, 2007. .. this NASA Research Announcement (NRA) solicits proposals for supporting basic and applied research and technology across a broad range of Earth and space science program elements relevant to one or more of the following NASA Research Programs: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Planetary Science, and Astrophysics."

NRC Reports Issued

Prepare to Feast Your Eyes

NASA Cassini Image: The Greatest Saturn Portrait ...Yet

"While cruising around Saturn in early October 2004, Cassini captured a series of images that have been composed into the largest, most detailed, global natural color view of Saturn and its rings ever made."

The Saturn view I've been waiting for, Planetary Society

"Over the weekend, Cassini acquired a set of images that will (I am assuming) eventually be used to produce a glorious portrait of the ringed planet from a point of view that's never been seen before. Cassini has already produced two significant, detailed mosaics of Saturn. The first was taken early in the mission from a fairly familiar perspective, showing most of the globe of Saturn as well as the rings from their sunlit side."

Editor's note: Have a look at this new NASA Video - posted on YouTube. It shows the launch and deployment of the five THEMIS (Time History of Events and Microscale Interactions during Substorms) spacecraft. Whereas NASA videos always tend to be sedate as far as music is concerned, this one has an interesting upbeat soundtrack. If you have a subwoofer on your computer's sound system, by all means turn up the volume! Raw footage can be viewed here and a HiDef version of the footage can be viewed here as well. The deployment sequence is rather well done - and the image of Earth and the aurora borealisis rather stunning.

Bad Software Doomed MGS

NASA Decides That A Software Error Doomed The Mars Global Surveyor Spacecraft, SpaceRef

"During a meeting of the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group Meeting in Washington DC, yesterday, NASA's John McNamee, Mars Exploration Program addressed the issue of the recent failure of the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) spacecraft.

Apparently incorrect software doomed the spacecraft."

NASA Panel Will Study Mars Global Surveyor Events

"Mars Global Surveyor launched in 1996 on a mission designed to study Mars from orbit for two years. It accomplished many important discoveries during nine years in orbit. On Nov. 2, the spacecraft transmitted information that one of its arrays was not pivoting as commanded. Loss of signal from the orbiter began on the following orbit."

Editor's note: Isn't it just a little odd that NASA PAO declines to mention in print what one of its own senior managers stated in a public meeting yesterday in front of hundreds of people - and the media - that flawed software which had been sent to the MGS was likely to blame for the spacecraft's failure?

Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group Meeting

The meeting will get underway at 8:00 am EST. Ongoing live commentary will be posted below.

Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group Meeting

The meeting is now underway. Ongoing live commentary is posted below.

"Plutoed" chosen 2006 word of the year by dialect society, AP

"To "pluto" is "to demote or devalue someone or something" much like what happened to the former planet last year when the General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union decided Pluto didn't meet its definition of a planet."

Major Astronomy Result to be Published in Nature Online / ESA TV Exchanges / 08-01-2007, ESA

"The online edition of Nature will publish, on 8 January 2007, a major scientific achievement in astronomy, in which European astronomers have participated, using a space telescope with ESA participation."

Editor's 5 Jan update: If you go to this ESA link it says "Hubble unfolds the universis of dark metal"

Editor's 7 Jan update: Hubble Maps the Cosmic Web of "Clumpy" Dark Matter in 3-D

Three Years Later Mars Rovers Keep Going, VOA

"The twin rovers' major findings came within the first 90 days. Opportunity found chemical evidence in bedrock that a shallow salt water sea existed at some time in Mars' past. The editor of the Internet website Marstoday.com, Keith Cowing, says those discoveries alone justified the mission. "If they had both done that, or even if one of them had landed and still done that, it would have been considered a resounding success," said Keith Cowing. "But these amazing little robots are still going."


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This page is an archive of entries in the Space & Planetary Science category from January 2007.

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