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86e7b842b01dbbadff71cd65579a0c571
2011-02-15 07:35:00

NASA's Stardust spacecraft spent its Valentine's Day getting cozy with a comet, snapping more than 70 photographs of Tempel 1 during a Monday flyby, the US space agency has announced. Stardust flew past Tempel 1 at speeds in excess of 24,000mph, AP Science Writer Alicia Chang reported on Tuesday. Officials from the NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California report that the time of closest approach was 11:39pm EST, when the craft passed within 112 miles of the comet. As of...

38ccfb6d6b9d0a17ed7b642e637018671
2011-02-14 13:25:00

As of today, Feb. 14, at 9:21 a.m. PST (12:21 p.m. EST), NASA's Stardust-NExT mission spacecraft is within a quarter-million miles (402,336 kilometers) of its quarry, comet Tempel 1, which it will fly by tonight. The spacecraft is cutting the distance with the comet at a rate of about 10.9 kilometers per second (6.77 miles per second or 24,000 mph). The flyby of Tempel 1 will give scientists an opportunity to look for changes on the comet's surface since it was visited by NASA's Deep Impact...

fc9a95796da0a3a6bf19a5a245d5d06c
2011-02-11 11:17:33

Here are five facts you should know about NASA's Stardust-NExT spacecraft as it prepares for a Valentine's "date" with comet Tempel 1. Feel free to sing along! 1. "The Way You Look Tonight" - The spacecraft is on a course to fly by comet Tempel 1 on Feb. 14 at about 8:37 p.m. PST (11:37 p.m. EST) -- Valentine's Day. Time of closest approach to Tempel 1 is significant because of the comet's rotation. We won't know until images are returned which face the comet has shown to the camera. 2. "It's...

231e9e884b0f757bfc4308ebdb1727bf1
2011-02-13 14:45:00

Stardust NExT must love comets. On Valentine's Day the spacecraft will get up close and personal with its second. It's been seven years since the original Stardust danced with Wild 2 out beyond the orbit of Mars, capturing a thimbleful of comet dust in its collector. It's been five years since the craft jettisoned its sample-return capsule and its precious cargo for a landing in the Utah desert. On Monday the probe will make history again in a 125-mile embrace with comet Tempel 1. It...

2011-02-08 16:35:00

PASADENA, Calif., Feb. 8, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA will host several live media activities for the Stardust-NExT mission's close encounter with comet Tempel 1. The closest approach is expected at approximately 8:37 p.m. PST, with confirmation received on Earth at about 8:56 p.m. PST on Monday, Feb. 14. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) Live coverage of the Tempel 1 encounter will begin at 8:30 p.m. Feb. 14 on NASA Television and the agency's...

027d6c4c90df276a265dcc05aad6d5b5
2011-02-08 18:50:52

NASA's Stardust spacecraft marked its 12th anniversary in space on Monday, Feb. 7, with a rocket burn to further refine its path toward a Feb. 14 date with a comet.The half-minute trajectory correction maneuver, which adjusts the spacecraft's flight path, began at about 1 p.m. PST (4 p.m. EST) on Monday, Feb. 7. The 30-second-long firing of the spacecraft's rockets consumed about 69 grams (2.4 ounces) of fuel and changed the spacecraft's speed by 0.56 meters per second (1.3 mph).NASA's plan...

11fe195ba89b7ef2c822e46d48371fa71
2011-01-27 08:35:00

NASA's Stardust spacecraft has downlinked its first images of comet Tempel 1, the target of a flyby planned for Valentine's Day, Feb. 14. The images were taken on Jan. 18 and 19 from a distance of 26.3 million kilometers (16.3 million miles), and 25.4 million kilometers (15.8 million miles) respectively. On Feb. 14, Stardust will fly within about 200 kilometers (124 miles) of the comet's nucleus. "This is the first of many images to come of comet Tempel 1," said Joe Veverka, principal...

2011-01-19 13:07:00

WASHINGTON, Jan. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA's Stardust-NExT spacecraft is nearing a celestial date with comet Tempel 1 at approximately 11:37 p.m. EST, on Feb. 14. The mission will allow scientists for the first time to look for changes on a comet's surface that occurred following an orbit around the sun. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) The Stardust-NExT, or New Exploration of Tempel, spacecraft will take high-resolution images during the...

b82b11e2fc3fa66e7193fcb8eae709c71
2010-11-23 06:15:00

Eighty-six days out from its appointment with a comet, NASA's Stardust spacecraft fired its thrusters to help refine its flight path. The Stardust-NExT mission will fly past comet Tempel 1 next Valentine's Day (Feb. 14, 2011). It will perform NASA's second comet flyby within four months. "One comet down, one to go," said Tim Larson, project manager for both the Stardust-NExT mission and the EPOXI mission -- which successfully flew past comet Hartley 2 on Nov. 4. The trajectory correction...

f6d4d5adec8204e82df67befe68357601
2010-11-03 08:15:00

The EPOXI mission spacecraft has refined its path toward a Nov. 4 flyby of comet Hartley 2, successfully performing its final maneuver Tuesday at 8 a.m. PDT (11 a.m. EDT). The spacecraft burned its engines for 6.8 seconds, changing the spacecraft's velocity by 1.4 meters per second (3 miles per hour). "I've worked the Stardust flyby of comet Wild 2 and the Deep Impact encounter with comet Tempel 1, and I have never seen a comet flit around the sky like this one," said mission navigator Shyam...


Latest 81P/Wild Reference Libraries

6_348877a21702e82deaef967e7029f7ad2
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Comet -- A comet is a small body from the outer reaches of the solar system similar to an asteroid but composed of ice. Often described as "dirty snowballs," they are composed largely of carbon dioxide ice, methane ice, and water ice with a mixture of dust and small stony aggregates mixed in. Comets are thought to be small pieces of debris left over from the formation of the solar system, representing a sample of the original composition of the nebula that condensed to form the Sun and all...

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Word of the Day
holluschickie
  • A 'bachelor seal'; a young male seal which is prevented from mating by its herd's older males (mated bulls defending their territory).
This comes from the Russian word for 'bachelors.'
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