Pasadena, Calif. (UPI) Jun 1, 2010
NASA says its Deep Impact/Epoxi spacecraft successfully performed a trajectory maneuver to refine its orbit prior to an upcoming Earth flyby.
The maneuver will place the spacecraft on a trajectory to fly past Earth June 27 prior to its Nov. 4 flyby of comet Hartley.
The trajectory maneuver, on Friday, involved the spacecraft's engines being fired for 11.3 seconds, NASA said. While the burn changed the spacecraft's velocity by less than a quarter-mile per hour, that was all the mission's navigators requested to set the stage for an Earth gravity assist.
"While it was a small burn, it was a big step in getting us to Hartley 2," said Tim Larson, project manager of NASA's Epoxi mission. "Humanity's fifth close-up view of a comet is less than five months away."
The University of Maryland is the principal investigator for the mission, while NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory manages the spacecraft for NASA's Science Mission Directorate.
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Paris, France (SPX) Jun 01, 2010
ESA and its partners are launching a new kind of fitness initiative using the example of space explorers to promote exercise and healthy nutrition to young people worldwide. 'Mission X: Train Like an Astronaut' is boarding now in eight countries. Kids: throw away the remote control, leave the Internet to run without you for a while and swap your burger for blueberries! Easier said than don ... read more
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