[Courtesy: Nasa; 06]
~-Click-on-position; to see Stardust Probe near Earth!
"Late Saturday (here in the west) we'll be watching a pinkish glow as bright as Venus, as the Stardust spacecraft will jettison a 100-pound capsule to Earth.
The cargo contains tiny pieces of space dust for microscopic study.
Last July, the Deep Impact spacecraft released a probe that carved a crater in a comet, exposing its interior to NASA telescopes. The Stardust mission went a step further by retrieving the first samples from a comet named Wild 2, which was about 500 million miles from Earth when Stardust launched in 1999.
After its historic return to Earth, Scientists believe this Stardust's cargo will help provide answers to fundamental questions about the origins of the solar system.
Projected, soft landing in the Utah desert, late Saturday"... M.B.
~Excerpt from Nasa site:
At 1800 Universal Time (10:00 am Pacific Time) on Thursday, Jan. 5, Stardust fired all eight of its 4.4 newton (1-pound) thrusters for a total of 107 seconds, changing the comet sampler's speed by 2.4 meters per second (about 5.4 miles per hour). The maneuver required 385 grams (0.85 pounds) of hydrazine monopropellant to complete. A final trajectory correction maneuver is scheduled prior to release of the sample return capsule.
~Preparing for Science Canister read more.
"The mothership will fire its thrusters and go into a perpetual orbit around the sun."....
"We are literally bringing back samples of the solar system as they were billions of years ago,"
(Principal investigator; U.of W.) Read more
Another item of interest:
~Check out Tom Hank's Magnificent Desolation 3D, trailer!
"Walking on the Moon."...(an incredible IMAX production!)...
UPDATE: Jan. 14th-15th Go here!
~Wizbang's......Bonfire of the Vanities #133..., Hosted by: hippocampy!!! Go see it!