Latest Gravity assist Stories
MESSENGER completed the second part of a two-part deep-space maneuver today, providing the remaining 10% velocity change needed to place the probe on course to fly by Mercury for the third time in September 2009.
A NASA spacecraft gliding over the battered surface of Mercury for the second time this year has revealed more previously unseen real estate on the innermost planet.
It is now only slightly more than three weeks before the MESSENGER spacecraft flies by Mercury for the second time.
On September 4, the MESSENGER team announced that it would not need to implement a scheduled maneuver to adjust the probeâ€™s trajectory. This is the fourth time this year that such a maneuver has been called off.
The MESSENGER spacecraft delivered a critical deep-space maneuver today â€“ 64 million miles (103 million kilometers) from Earth â€“ successfully firing its large bi-propellant engine to change the probeâ€™s trajectory and target it for its second flyby of Mercury on October 6, 2008.
Little more than three weeks after MESSENGERâ€™s first historic flyby of Mercury, the team this week began mapping out its trajectory and observation plans for the probeâ€™s second pass of the planet this fall.
NASA will return to Mercury for the first time in almost 33 years on January 14, 2008, when the MESSENGER spacecraft makes its first flyby of the Sunâ€™s closest neighbor, capturing images of large portions of the planet never before seen.
On Monday, Jan. 14, a pioneering NASA spacecraft will be the first to visit Mercury in almost 33 years when it soars over the planet to explore and snap close-up images of never-before-seen terrain.
Sending an unmanned spacecraft to the outer fringes of the solar system requires extensive planning. At the University of Missouri, engineers have developed an efficient and highly sophisticated mathematical algorithm (implemented as software) that determines the most efficient path for a spacecraftâ€™s journey from point A to point B â€“ no matter how many worlds or years away.
ESAâ€™s comet chaser, Rosetta, is on its way to its second close encounter with Earth on 13 November. The spacecraftâ€™s operators are leaving no stones unturned to make sure Earthâ€™s gravity gives it the exact boost it needs en route to its destination.
Galileo Probe -- The Galileo probe was an unmanned probe sent by NASA to study the planet Jupiter and its moons. Named after the astronomer Galileo Galilei, it was launched on October 18 1989 by the Space Shuttle Atlantis and arrived at Jupiter on December 7 1995. Galileo's launch had been significantly delayed by the hiatus in Space Shuttle launches that occurred after the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster, and new safety protocols that were implemented as a result forced Galileo to use...
Cassini-Huygens Mission -- The Cassini unmanned space probe is intended to study Saturn and its moons. It was launched on October 15, 1997 and is estimated to enter Saturn's orbit on July 1, 2004. The mission is a joined NASA/ESA project. Cassini's principal objectives are to: -- determine the three-dimensional structure and dynamical behavior of the rings -- determine the composition of the satellite surfaces and the geological history of each object -- determine the nature and...
Escape Velocity -- An escape velocity is the minimum speed at which an object without propulsion can move away from a source of a gravitational field indefinitely if there is no friction. This definition may need modification for the practical problem of two or more sources in some cases. In any case, the object is assumed to be a point with a mass that is negligible compared with that of the source of the field, usually an excellent approximation. It is commonly described as the speed...