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This Week at NASA | This Week @ NASA: James Webb Space Telescope Out of Chamber “A”

Uploaded 12/01/2017

This Week @ NASA: James Webb Space Telescope Out of Chamber “A”

“Here’s some of the stories trending This Week at NASA!”

James Webb Space Telescope Out of Chamber A

Our James Webb Space Telescope is now out of the historic Chamber A vacuum facility at our Johnson Space Center in Houston, after completing cryogenic testing designed to ensure the telescope works well in the cold, airless environment of space. Set to launch in 2019, Webb will study every phase in the history of our Universe, starting with the first luminous glows following the Big Bang.

NASA’s Next Mars Rover Mission

The Mars 2020 rover we’re building looks a lot like its predecessor, Curiosity. The two share some of the same systems and hardware, but Mars 2020 will be even better equipped to seek out signs of ancient life on the Red Planet. Mars 2020 will carry new landing technology to avoid hazards, cutting-edge instruments to search for bio-signatures on a microbial scale, and ground-penetrating radar to map layers of water and ice up to 30 feet deep.  It will also collect samples for possible return to Earth by a future mission.

New Space Station Crew Trains for Launch

Expedition 54-55 – the next crew headed to the International Space Station – were in Star City, Russia, this week getting ready for their upcoming launch to the orbiting outpost. NASA astronaut Scott Tingle, Anton Shkaplerov of Roscosmos and Norishige Kanai of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) are set to launch on Dec. 17 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. They’ll spend four months aboard the Space Station.

Update for Next SpaceX Launch to Space Station

NASA and our commercial cargo partner, SpaceX are set to launch the next resupply mission to the International Space Station on Friday, Dec. 8 from the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft will deliver about 4,800 pounds of cargo to the station, and critical science and research, including experiments on synthetic bone material and fiber optics, a space debris sensor, and an instrument to measure solar energy.

Giant Black Hole Pair Photobombs Andromeda Galaxy

Data from our Chandra X-ray Observatory and ground-based telescopes have revealed new details about an intriguing source previously thought to be part of the Andromeda galaxy – 2.5 million light years from Earth. New research shows that the source is actually a very distant object that sits beyond Andromeda – about 2.6 billion light years from us. It likely also contains a pair of giant black holes in close orbit around each other. The estimated total mass for these two supermassive black holes is about two hundred million times that of our Sun.

Historic Apollo Mission Control Center Will Be Restored

Apollo 11 landing:
“Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.”

Our historic Apollo Mission Control Center at the Johnson Space Center in Houston is being completely restored. The restored room will provide a snapshot of how it looked during the Apollo 11 moon landing, with the project set to finish in July 2019 – in time for the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11.

And that’s what’s up this week @NASA …

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