9/P Tempel

Celestial visitors from the edge of the Solar System.
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Christopher K.
Posts: 4763
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

9/P Tempel

Post by Christopher K. » February 14th, 2011, 6:04 pm

The Stardust spacecraft is just hours away from its "date" with Tempel 1. Stardust is easily less than 400,000 kilometers away from the object as of this moment.

Imaging will take place for about eight minutes with the navigation camera. That camera was tested back in January 2009 by taking images of Earth's moon from 1.1 million kilometers away. The test showed the periscope was not damaged by any of the coarse material striking the craft during its original mission of imaging Comet Wild 2. On-board memory is limited to 72 high-res images.

Ernest Tempel discovered the comet in April 1867, just about six weeks before that closest approach. Deep Impact famously smashed into Tempel 1 in July 2005.

Stardust-NExT Mission:
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/stard ... index.html

Tempel 1:
http://www.cometography.com/pcomets/009p.html

Christopher K.
Posts: 4763
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: 9/P Tempel

Post by Christopher K. » February 20th, 2011, 7:42 pm

The crater created by the Deep Impact impactor was, as hoped, imaged by Stardust-NExT's navigation camera. The crater is about 150 meters in diameter. The camera was also able to image features on the surface not seen before. The spacecraft actually got to within 178 kilometers of the nucleus, slightly closer than the predicted 200.

More information:
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/stard ... 10215.html

Christopher K.
Posts: 4763
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: 9/P Tempel

Post by Christopher K. » October 22nd, 2015, 9:55 am

Shortly before the now-legendary Deep Impact impact, Samuel Irwin wrote a story for the Baton Rouge Advocate. It described HRPO's Science Academy and how then-Manager Trey Goodman and then-Education Curator Craig Brenden were creating homemade comets for attendees, including seven-year-old Hayley Franklin and seven-year-old Joshua Anderson. The comet-building exercise (a favorite at HRPO for years since) used ammonia, dry ice and syrup.

Well, Science Academy is still going strong and Hayley is now a Program Aide!

More information:
"Baton Rouge Advocate", 3 July 2005, p. 6B.

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