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This Week a NASA | Orion Spacecraft Prepped for Dec. 4 Test; Europeans Land on Comet; more

Uploaded 11/14/2014

Orion Spacecraft Prepped for Dec. 4 Test; Europeans Land on Comet; more

In preparation for its first spaceflight test next month, NASA’s Orion spacecraft was transported from Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Abort System Facility to Space Launch Complex 37 at nearby Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on November 11, arriving at the launch pad early Nov. 12. NASA’s new deep space exploration capsule then was attached to the top of the Delta IV Heavy rocket that will carry it to space for the Dec. 4 test. Also, ISS crew returns safely, Earth Science research to continue with developing nations, Rosetta update, Rocks and Robots and more.

 

TRANSCRIPT

 

Orion rolled out and mated

In preparation for its first spaceflight test next month, NASA’s Orion spacecraft was transported from Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Abort System Facility to Space Launch Complex 37 at nearby Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on November 11, arriving at the launch pad early Nov. 12. NASA’s new deep space exploration capsule then was attached to the top of the Delta IV Heavy rocket that will carry it to space for the Dec. 4 test.

ISS crew returns safely

Just hours after leaving the International Space Station on Nov. 9, the Expedition 41 crew safely touched down in Kazakhstan at 10:58 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. NASA’s Reid Wiseman, Russian cosmonaut Max Suraev and Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency, completed a 165-day mission. Meanwhile, the Expedition 42/43 crew – including NASA’s Terry Virts traveled from Star City, Russia to Kazakhstan to complete training for their scheduled launch to the station later this month.

Earth Science research to continue

During a Nov. 10 meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden discussed continued Earth science research collaboration with leaders of the Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development. The inter-governmental organization of African states is host to a joint NASA and USAID venture that provides developing nations with satellite-based Earth observation data and science applications, to help improve environmental and natural resource decision making.

Rosetta update

After sailing through space for more than a decade, the European Space Agency’s Rosetta spacecraft successfully landed its Philae robotic probe on the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, on Nov. 12 – completing the first-ever soft landing of a spacecraft on a comet. NASA has three instruments on the orbiting Rosetta spacecraft, which will spend about 18 months studying the comet.

Rocks and Robots

Team members of NASA’s Asteroid Redirect Mission, including program manager Michele Gates, recently visited Goddard Space Flight Center to check out simulated mission scenarios and prototype technologies that could be used to retrieve a boulder off of a larger asteroid – one of the two asteroid capture concepts NASA will chose between by late 2014. The other would fully enclose an asteroid using an inflatable system. The Asteroid Redirect Mission will advance the technologies and experience needed to send humans to Mars in the 2030s.

Last mission to Hubble

A panel discussion on Nov. 12 at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City featured crew members of space shuttle mission STS-125 – the last servicing mission to NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope. April 24 of next year marks the 25th anniversary of Hubble’s launch on STS-31 – featuring current NASA Administrator and then-astronaut, Charlie Bolden as the pilot of space shuttle Discovery’s crew.

And that’s what’s up this week @NASA.

 

 

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