NASA TV's This Week @NASA, Week Ending March 14

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NASA TV's This Week @NASA, Week Ending March 14
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This Week At NASA…

A full-scale element of NASA's Ares I-X rocket was on display at the Glenn Research Center. The simulated element represents the size, outer shape and mass of the second stage of the Ares I rocket. Members of the media were invited to climb inside the 18-foot wide, 45-foot tall simulation of the Ares I upper stage, which was designed and manufactured at Glenn. They also received a tour of Glenn’s Fabrication Shop, where this launch vehicle demonstrator was created. A test launch and flight of the Ares I-X is scheduled for April 2009. It will be a critical milestone in the development of NASA's Constellation Program to send astronauts back to the moon.

Former Astronaut Neil Armstrong was the featured speaker at the 51st annual Dr. Robert H. Goddard Memorial Dinner. First celebrated in 1958, the black-tie event is held each year to celebrate the anniversary of Dr. Goddard’s first successful liquid-fueled rocket flight in 1926. A non-profit organization, The Space Club fosters excellence in space activity and provides scholarships to encourage study in engineering and science. It also recognizes achievements in space science and enterprise. The dinner brought together 2,000 members of the government, industry and the educational space community.

The National Space Science Technology Center at Marshall and the Huntsville National Weather Service Forecast Office are celebrating five years of collaboration to improve weather prediction. With NASA's Short-term Prediction Research and Transition program, SPoRT, the forecasters are tapping into research available from NASA instruments. The alliance has produced numerous successes, including an increased understanding of the relationship between lightning activity and severe thunderstorms, and better short-term weather predictions. SPoRT will help forecasters prepare for the next generation of weather satellites that’ll be launched by NASA and NOAA over the next 10 years.

SCOTT ALTMAN: "Greetings from NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. I'm Scott Altman, Commander of the final shuttle mission to perform work on the Hubble Space Telescope."

Members of the STS-125 crew that will make the fifth and final servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope helped the U.S. Postal Service unveil a new stamp of the telescope’s namesake. Astronomer Edwin P. Hubble’s meticulous studies of spiral nebulae proved the existence of galaxies other than the Milky Way. Shuttle Atlantis is scheduled to take the 125 crew to service Hubble in late August. The Hubble stamp is one in a series of four honoring 20th century scientists.

The Hubble also is the subject of a special exhibit now on display at the Walters Art Museum in Baltimore. It’s called “Mapping the Cosmos: Images from the Hubble Space Telescope,” and it brings together more than 20 images captured by Hubble. Scientists and experts from the Space Telescope Science Institute worked together with students from Johns Hopkins University to choose the images and design the two-room exhibit, part of a larger presentation entitled “Maps: Finding Our Place in the World.” The Hubble images, one as large as 10 feet wide, were chosen for their visual impact, natural beauty, and the relationship between art and science. “Mapping the Cosmos” is at the Walters through July.

Dr. Shannon Lucid became a NASA astronaut in August 1979. She’s flown on four space shuttle missions, and spent more than 188 days as a board engineer 2 on Russia’s Mir space station. That flight was the longest by an American on Mir. A commercial, instrument, and multi-engine rated pilot, Shannon Lucid has served as NASA’s Chief Scientist, and currently works in the Astronaut Office at the Johnson Space Center. Born in Shanghai, China, Lucid considers Bethany, Oklahoma her hometown. She and husband Michael Lucid have three children and five grandchildren. Shannon enjoys flying, camping, hiking, and reading. In 1996, Dr. Shannon Lucid became the first woman to be awarded the Congressional Space Medal of Honor.

ANNOUNCER: "2-1, Engine Start. We have liftoff of NASA's Image Spacecraft."
The IMAGE spacecraft was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California on Mar. 25, 2000. IMAGE, for “Imager for Magnetopause-to-Aurora Global Exploration,” was the first satellite mission dedicated to imaging the Earth's magnetosphere, the region of space controlled by the Earth's magnetic field. IMAGE used numerous imaging techniques to "see the invisible" and produce the first comprehensive global images of the ions and electrons in the plasmas of the inner magnetosphere. With these images, space scientists were able to observe, in a way never before possible, the large-scale dynamics of the magnetosphere. The IMAGE mission concluded with its last transmission of data on Dec. 18, 2005.

And that's This Week At NASA!
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