May 18, 2009 | 1
The Hubble Space Telescope has received its last upgrades and repairs. The fifth and final spacewalk of the last shuttle mission to Hubble ended at 3:22 P.M. (Eastern Daylight Time), wrapping up an ambitious and remarkably successful servicing operation.
The Hubble team hopes that the fixes will keep the telescope alive for several years, maybe even a decade or more, long after the space shuttle's scheduled retirement next year.
In today's spacewalk, the third of this mission for Drew Feustel and John Grunsfeld, the astronauts replaced three of Hubble's six massive batteries, which have powered the spacecraft during the night portion of its orbit for all of its 19 years in space. (The other three were swapped out in an earlier spacewalk.) Feustel and Grunsfeld also replaced a faulty Fine Guidance Sensor, one of three that helps to point the telescope, and installed a new set of external thermal blankets.
Nov 19, 2008 | 2
Bye-bye, grease gun.
An astronaut cleaning a solar rotary joint on the International Space Station lost her 30-pound tool bag yesterday, sending two grease guns, a scraper, a garbage bag and wipes into the cosmos, NASA reports.
"Oh, great," said astronaut Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper as the bag drifted away. "You see it?"
The slip-up occurred about midway into the nearly seven -hour spacewalk. Piper was about to lubricate the rotary joint, which is clogged with metal shavings, when the gun squirted grease into her tool bag. As she was cleaning out the bag, it drifted away. She and astronaut Steve Bowen shared a second set of tools for the rest of the spacewalk.
Nov 4, 2008 | 6
Well, that’s a relief.
A 1,400-pound (635-kilogram) ammonia tank burned up over the Pacific Ocean late Sunday, more than a year after an astronaut chucked it from the International Space Station because it had become obsolete, NASA said yesterday.
"What debris may have been still together after re-entry, it fell into the ocean between Australia and New Zealand," Mike Suffredini, NASA's space station program manager, told reporters yesterday, according to Space.com. "I know a lot of folks were wondering what the end result of that was."
Up to 15 pieces of the tank could have survived its re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere, with the largest, 40-pound (17.5-kilogram) pieces plunging into sea at up to 100 miles (164 kilometers) per hour, the Web site reported.
Nov 3, 2008 | 4
Anyone spot a refrigerator-sized tank of ammonia recently? It could be the largest-ever piece of astronaut litter chucked by hand from the International Space Station.
Astronaut Clayton Anderson tossed the coolant tank during a July 23, 2007 spacewalk after upgrades to the space station made it obsolete. The Early Ammonia Servicer (EAS) tank had served as a reservoir for the station in case its cooling system leaked.
The 1,400-pounds (635 kilograms) of debris was expected to enter Earth’s atmosphere yesterday or last night, Space.com reported. No word yet on whether it’s made impact.
Oct 22, 2008 | 1
India is on its way to the moon, the country’s first unmanned mission there ahead of a planned 2012 rover landing.
The Chandrayaan 1 probe blasted off atop a PSLV-C11 rocket at 6:22 local time this morning from Satish Dhawan Space Center in the southern Andrha Pradesh Province. The $79-million mission reflects an emerging, competitive Asian presence in space at a time when the U.S. shuttle fleet is nearing retirement.
“It is a historic moment,” said G. Madhavan Nair, chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization, according to Bloomberg News. “Our journey to the moon has started.”
Deadline: Jul 25 2013
This challenge provides an opportunity for Solvers to build a web-based or mobile “app” to explore data relationships in scholarly conte
Deadline: Aug 31 2013
Reward: $100,000 USD
The Geoffrey Beene Foundation Alzheimer’s Initiative (GBFAI) is launching the 2013 Geoffrey Beene Global NeuroDiscovery Challenge whose
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