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NASA TV's This Week @NASA, July 10
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This Week At NASA...
ENDEAVOUR : READY TO GO! - KSC
The clock is ticking on STS-127, the next space shuttle mission to the International Space Station. Following a nearly 30 day postponement, NASA Flight managers report that systems are in excellent shape for Space Shuttle Endeavour’s liftoff from Kennedy Space Center on Saturday, July 11 at 7:39 p.m., Eastern Daylight Time. As launch day approaches, STS-127 astronauts continue to view their flight plans, relax and check out their launch-and-entry suits.
Mark Polansky: "I can tell you that this crew and the entire operations team are both eager and ready to get to work."
STS-127 was originally scheduled to launch on June 13, but was preempted due to a hydrogen vent line leak on the external tank. Mark Polansky heads the Endeavour crew, Doug Hurley is the Pilot and Mission Specialists include: Dave Wolf, Christopher Cassidy, Tom Marshburn, Tim Kopra and Canadian Space Agency astronaut Julie Payette. Kopra will join the space station crew replacing Japanese astronaut Koichi Wakata. Wakata will return home with Endeavour after a three-month stay on the station.
NASA CONFIRMATION HEARINGS – HQ
The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation held a confirmation hearing for General Charles Bolden nominee for NASA Administrator and Lori Garver nominee for Deputy Administrator.
Bolden retired from the United States Marine Corps in 2003 as the Commanding General of the Third Marine Aircraft Wing after serving more than 34 years. Bolden began his service in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1968. He flew more than 100 sorties in Vietnam from 1972-73. In 1980, he was selected as an astronaut by NASA, flying two space shuttle missions as pilot and two missions as commander.
Charles Bolden: "Today we face a crisis of opportunity. I ask each of you to join with President Obama, me, and the NASA team that I hope to lead with your confirmation, in partnership with Lori Garver, in turning these challenges into opportunities."
Lori Garver has served as Senior Advisor for Space at the Avascent Group, a strategy and management consulting firm, based in Washington, D.C.
Lori Garver: "The space program is for all of us. Our government space program must be responsive to the American tax payer in order to be meaningful and sustainable."
From 1998 to 2001, Garver served as NASA’s Associate Administrator of the Office of Policy and Plans.
NEW LUNAR IMAGES - GSFC
NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter has transmitted its first images since reaching the moon on June 23. The area photographed is a region in the lunar highlands south of Mare Nubium or the Sea of Clouds and is similar to that explored by the Apollo 16 astronauts in 1972. LRO has two cameras -- collectively known as the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera. As the moon rotates beneath LRO, the cameras will gradually build up photographic maps of the lunar surface.
ROBOTS PREP FOR MOON MISSION - ARC
Two NASA robots are exploring the dusty and rocky terrain of the northern Arizona desert to simulate a scouting mission on the moon. The robots know as "K-10 Black" and "K-10 Red" are using their on- board cameras and 3-D laser scanners to take images and map the terrain.
Maria Bualat: "We’re looking at using a smaller robot like K-10 to explore the area ahead of time to make the astronauts time more efficient on the moon."
The data is transmitted to mission managers at the Ames Research Center, where the robots are remotely controlled. Robotic scouting missions to the moon will provide astronauts a lunar road map that will improve the quality and amount of science data collected during their stay on the lunar surface. Information gathered from the K-10s will be used to plan a simulated astronaut mission to the moon this August.
INAUGURATION FESTIVITIES - ARC
Ames also welcomed more than 500 hundred guests, including 170 students, and dozens of faculty from more than 40 countries, to the International Space University and Singularity University Opening Ceremony. The curriculum for the 22nd annual Space Studies programs covers technical and non-technical space-related field ranging from engineering to policy-making. Attendees to this year’s event were treated to speakers, multimedia presentations and musical performances.
FAREWELL ULYSSES - JPL
ESA Scientist Voice: "Ulysses out."
JPL Scientist: "It’s a shame this mission ends."
After charting the unexplored regions of space, above the poles of the sun, for more than 18 years, the joint NASA-ESA Ulysses mission has officially ended.
Launch Announcer: "And liftoff of Discovery and the Ulysses spacecraft."
Launched on Oct. 6, 1990 from Space shuttle Discovery, Ulysses gathered unique information about the heliosphere, the bubble in space carved by the solar wind. The mission lasted almost four times longer than expected, and made nearly three complete orbits of the sun. Ulysses revealed, for the first time, the three-dimensional character of galactic cosmic radiation, energetic particles produced in solar storms and the solar wind, and allowed scientists to observe the sun over a longer period of time than ever before. At present Ulysses orbital path is carrying it away from Earth, progressively limiting the data it transmits.
STUDENT LUAU - MSFC
Marshall Spaceflight Center’s Academic Affairs Office sponsored a student intern luau-themed event called "Eyes on Marshall." The center's summer interns got the chance to learn more about Marshall’s role in the NASA mission. Students participated in team building activities, and attended networking meetings in various departments around the Center. They were also given information about the variety of science, technology, engineering and math disciplines involved in driving NASA's mission to return to the moon and beyond. Speakers for the event included Marshall’s Acting Center Director Robert Lightfoot and Director of Human Capital Teresa Washington.
Robert Lightfoot: "We kind of put three things in perspective here at Marshall. This is kind of what we do. We get you to space. We allow you to live and work in space, and we do a lot of science from space."
NASA ANNIVERSARY: LAUNCH OF APOLLO 11, July 16, 1969
(Apollo 11 Nat Sound)
Forty years ago, on July 16, 1969, NASA launched it’s, much anticipated, mission to land humans on the lunar surface and return them safely to earth.
Neil Armstrong: "Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed."
It carried a veteran crew of astronauts, Commander Neil Armstrong, Command Module Pilot Michael Collins, and Lunar Module Pilot Buzz Aldrin. Four day later on July 20 the Lunar Module, named Eagle, landed in the southwestern part of the moon’s Sea of Tranquility. There Armstrong and Aldrin made One Giant Leap for all humanity by becoming the first humans to walk on the Moon.
Neil Armstrong: "It’s one small step for man. One Giant Leap for mankind."
Michael Collins orbited patiently above while the two astronauts spent 21 hours exploring the lunar surface. The Apollo 11 mission was rife with firsts. In addition to leaving that first iconic human footprint, it also conducted the first solar wind experiment deployed on the Moon, and returned the first lunar soil and rock samples, 46 pounds, to the earth’s surface. The success of Apollo 11 is considered one of the greatest technological achievements of all time.
NASA is holding a series of events throughout the month to commemorate the Apollo Program, including a celebration at the National Air and Space Museum to mark the 40th Anniversary of the first lunar landing. For a complete list of events go to: www.nasa.gov and scroll down to Apollo's 40th Anniversary.
And that's This Week At NASA!
For more on these and other stories, log onto : www.nasa.gov
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