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Mir to be de-orbited in February!
More Mars water evidence!
Check out the new International Space Station Mission Journal!
24 November 2000 - What are China's
for space exploration? They appear poised to become the third nation
with human spaceflight
capability, and they stress peaceful
intentions. Chinese academics even envision a moon
base! Let the race begin!!
rush? A loophole in the 1967
UN Space Treaty may permit private ownership of real estate on the moon!
How long till someone puts up a Starbuck's?
An American satellite, Quickbird
1, was lost
upon launch aboard a Russian Kosmos
rocket, fired from the Plesetsk
Cosmodrome. Quickbird would have been able to image
objects less than 1 meter wide, from orbit!
The second stage probably shut down prematurely, and the Earth
observation satellite probably burned up in the atmosphere. Next time, fly
Russia's plan to decommission
Mir may put a slight crimp
in the plans of TV producers who want to put on a "Survivor"
type show, with contestants going through grueling Cosmonaut training.
Hey, there's always Regis!
Today In Space History - The crew of Apollo 12
splashed down in the Pacific ocean on 24
Nov 1969, successfully
ending the second manned lunar
mission. [Date: AP]
More Space History - Launch of
23 November 2000 - Happy Thanksgiving!
- NASA has suspended
a planned mission to Pluto
- the most distant planet in our Solar
System, and the only one that hasn't been explored. All together now:
JPL has released a short
"movie" of cloud
formations on Jupiter.
Cassini Images Cloud Dance Over Jupiter
spacecraft took images of dynamic cloud action on Jupiter that have been
assembled into two short movies. In this
one, winds swirling
counterclockwise around the giant planet are shown near the Great Red
Spot. Dark and light bands that form horizontal stripes around the planet
can be seen rushing in opposite directions to each other. The Cassini
spacecraft will pass closest to Jupiter, at about 6 million miles away, on
Dec. 30. It will use a boost from Jupiter's gravity to reach its ultimate
destination, Saturn. While near Jupiter, it is studying that planet's
atmosphere, magnetic field and rings in collaboration with NASA's Galileo
spacecraft, which has been orbiting Jupiter since Dec. 7, 1995. Follow
this link for more information on the joint Cassini-Galileo
is joining the European
Southern Observatory, an organization for astronomical research
operating in the high desert of Chile.
Today In Space History - It's the fortieth
anniversary of the launch of TIROS
II, the second-ever weather
[Date: United Space Alliance]
22 November 2000 - Here's some more about new
photographic evidence that water
once flowed on Mars
[See also 19 Nov].
The folks at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory have
saved one of their
probes from getting fried by a giant solar eruption! NASA reports:
Stardust Meets Solar Flare
NASA engineers and scientists helped the Stardust
spacecraft survive a close encounter with a storm of high-energy particles
from the Sun after a recent solar flare. Stardust, a NASA mission to
return samples of a comet, was only 130 million miles from the Sun on
November 9. when flight team engineers began to worry, having heard that
the fourth-largest solar flare since 1976 was heading toward Earth. This
monster cloud of energized particles, 100,000 times more intense than
usual, hit the spacecraft and its cameras took a series of proton hits.
The spacecraft went into standby mode. But all is well. An image taken
days after the solar flare subsided shows that the camera had completely
Today In Space History - Launch of
Shuttle Discovery on STS-33,
the fifth military
mission of the Shuttle program (22 Nov
20 November 2000 - Tomorrow's rocket
launch will be webcast
live from Vandenberg
AFB. A Delta booster will carry 2 satellites into
orbit. Launch is scheduled for Tuesday, 21 Nov at
1:24PM EST (note new time). [See
also 18 Nov]. NASA reports:
Launch of Earth Observing Spacecraft Delayed to Nov. 21
After a two-day delay, the Boeing Delta 2 rocket is now back on track for
blastoff Tuesday from Vandenberg Air Force Base, CA, carrying a payload of
Earth science research satellites. The Earth
Observing 1 (EO-1) satellite and SAC-C
spacecraft will usher in a new era of looking at Earth. EO-1's primary
mission is to test a set of advanced technology land imaging instruments.
The SAC-C spacecraft, carrying the cooperative mission between NASA and the
Argentine Commission on Space Activities (CONAE),
will study the structure and dynamics of the Earth's atmosphere, ionosphere
and geomagnetic field (Información
en español).The launch, scheduled for 1:24 a.m. EST, will follow a
pre-launch press conference held today at 2 p.m. EST. NASA
Television will cover these events live and webcasts can be accessed
from http://www.ksc.nasa.gov and http://www.kennedyspacecenter.com.
Wrap up last week's space news at Florida Today.
Today In Space History - Shuttle
Atlantis came to a landing at KSC 10 years ago today, concluding STS-38,
a classified military
[Date: United Space Alliance]
17 November 2000 - The National
Reconnaissance Office, the U.S. agency responsible for spy
satellites, issued a
warning this week regarding the shortage
of its resources, saying that the U.S. risks becoming "blind
and deaf" to threats from terrorists.
Leonids meteor shower tonight? We
hope to see some shooting
stars, but the moon may be too bright.
NASA is ending
the mission of the Extreme
Ultraviolet Explorer satellite, which observed the universe in the UV
spectrum for 8 years. What, ran out of
India will launch
a weather satellite next
Today In Space History - The European
Union launched the Infrared Space
Observatory, an orbiting
telescope designed to "see" in the shortest
wavelengths of light. ISO
from the Arianespace
facility at Kourou,
(in the South American country of French
Guiana), atop an Ariane
44P rocket. The launch date was 17
Nov 1995, and it remained
operational until 16
May 1998, although discoveries
continue to be made from data
still being processed. [Date: Encyclopedia Astronautica]
14 November 2000 - Get up early this
Friday and Saturday (or stay up late Thursday and Friday!) Why? It's
that time again - the annual Leonids
meteor shower is here. Will we get a spectacular sky-show,
or just some dull sparks? If we're lucky, we might even see meteors
strike the moon! If you don't feel like trudging out to the back yard in
your bunny slippers, catch the live
webcast at NASA's Leonids site.
New video is available of the closeup flyover that the NEAR-Shoemaker
probe made over asteroid
Eros. Here's NASA:
NEAR Team Releases Low-Flyover Movie
you don't need lasers and light sabers to make a great space flick, the NEAR
mission team has released the first movie from NEAR Shoemaker's low-altitude
buzz over the asteroid Eros. Shot in the early hours of Oct. 26, 2000, the
video covers segments of a 55-minute span in which NEAR Shoemaker closes
from 8 to 5 miles over the asteroid's rocky surface. Without giving away too
much of the plot, the 90-second movie includes unprecedented and detailed
views of dust-filled craters, jagged boulders and rugged terrain that have
intrigued NEAR scientists.
The miniature-rover project that the U.S. and
had planned to return soil samples from an asteroid has been cancelled due
to rising costs. Too bad, that would have been a cool mission!
X-Ray observatory has spotted a "battle between galactic
forces" (no, not Imperial Stormtroopers!). It's a cosmic
tug-of-war between galaxy Cygnus
A, and a mysterious black
Today In Space History - We mark the 31st anniversary of the
12 launch (14 Nov 1969).
was the second
lunar landing, and the last U.S. space
flight of the sixties. Mission Fact sheet
Crew info here;
Image collection here.
The crew splashed down
in the Pacific 10 days
after launch (24 Nov
Mission commander Charles "Pete" Conrad became the
human to walk on the
moon on 19 November 1969. He died tragically 30 years later, in a
last year (July 1999), after a long and successful career
as an astronaut and in the
is survived by his crewmates,
and Richard Gordon.
10 November 2000 - Is Jupiter's
blanketed with sulfur-rich
Let's go skiing!
Space Telescope has spotted a neutron star - the remains of
a stellar explosion, only a few miles across - but 10
trillion times denser than steel! NASA explains:
Hubble Images 'Nearby' Neutron Star Streaking Across Galaxy
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has
imaged a 'nearby'
neutron star. Forged in a stellar explosion that was visible to our
ancestors in 1 million B.C., this interstellar interloper is the closest
neutron star to Earth ever seen--200 light years away--according to Hubble
researchers. Astronomers expect it to swing by our planet at a safe distance
in about 300,000 years. A neutron star made up of the remnants left behind
after a supernova explosion, as the material at the core collapses into a
dense mass of neutrons. The star has the mass of the sun packed into an area
about 12 miles in diameter--the size of Manhattan Island.
Wrap up last week's space news at Florida Today.
Today In Space History - The USSR
launched the Zond
6 probe to the moon 32 years ago today (10
Nov 1968). [Date: United Space Alliance]
02 November 2000 - The Hubble Space Telescope spotted a violent
collision between two galaxies. Did anybody
file an accident report?
01 November 2000 - The Russian government has allocated
funds to send two Progress
re-supply ships to their Mir space
station. If private funds can be secured, the Progress vehicles can be
used to boost Mir's orbit. If not, then they will be used to de-orbit the
station for a controlled re-entry into the ocean.
Today In Space History - X-15
flight number 174 (01
Nov 1966), where pilot Bill Dana took his rocket-plane
3) to nearly 307,000
feet, earning him astronaut's
wings! X-15s were carried aloft under the wing of a B-52 bomber, then
dropped from 45,000 feet. The pilot would then light the rocket
engine, take his plane as
fast as Mach 6, and as high as the edge
of space, and then glide to a 200MPH landing. Bill Dana joined NASA on
01 Oct 1958 (the day it was founded), making him the
very first NASA employee!
[Date: Encyclopedia Astronautica]
More Space History: Landing
of STS-52 - Shuttle Columbia (01 Nov 1992). [Date: United Space Alliance]
To keep going back in the timeline, check the
Space News Archive for October 2000,
Apr - May 2000,
Jan - Feb 2000,
Oct - Dec 1999,
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