|Einstein's Theory of Relativity to be Tested||
NASA is preparing to put Albert Einstein's Theory of General Relativity to the test. The Gravity Probe B (GP-B) spacecraft will use four ultra-precise gyroscopes to determine whether space and time are distorted by the presence
of massive objects.|
Albert Einstein conceived the Theory of General Relativity.
In order to carry out the mission, GP-B will measure two factors - how space
and time are warped by the presence of the Earth, and how the Earth's rotation
drags space-time around with it.
At Stanford University, ideas for Gravity Probe B began to take shape in 1960.
A physics-engineering team was formed, led since 1962 by Francis Everitt, now
GP-B principal investigator. So began a long process of design, analysis, and
exploratory research funded by NASA and supported technically by NASA's
Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. The GP-B spacecraft was
designed, integrated and tested by Lockheed Martin.
The GP-B spacecraft arrived at Vandenberg Air Force Base July 10 from the
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Facility in Sunnyvale, Calif. Launch is set for
late 2003 aboard a Boeing Delta II launch vehicle.
Computer-designed artist rendering of the
Gravity Probe B space vehicle
Low- and high-resolution JPEG image files of Gravity Probe B can be found
For more information on the Gravity Probe B mission, see:
http://einstein.stanford.edu/ and http://www.gravityprobeb.com/
NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center and John F. Kennedy Space Center