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Thread: How to Watch NASA Reach The Farthest Object in The Solar System Yet.

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Default How to Watch NASA Reach The Farthest Object in The Solar System Yet.

    To ancient explorers, "ultima Thule," or the most distant region, was what lay past the northernmost edges of maps, beyond the borders of the known world.
    So when NASA chose a target for its New Horizons spacecraft that was farther than anything previously explored, Ultima Thule seemed a fitting moniker. The far-flung space rock is an inhabitant of the Kuiper belt, the ring of debris that encircles the icy outer reaches of the Solar System.
    Ultima Thule is so dim and so distant that scientists aren't even certain what it looks like. Some of their only information about its size and shape comes from coordinated observations last summer, when astronomers measured the shadow it cast as it passed in front of a star.
    New Horizons will finally fly by its target just after midnight on January 1, taking close-up photographs and sophisticated scientific measurements of what it sees. By the time the first images and data stream back to Earth, the borders of the known world will have expanded once more.
    "This is just raw exploration," said Alan Stern, a scientist at the Southwest Research Institute and the principal investigator for the mission.
    "No one has ever seen a Kuiper belt object as anything but a point of light. No one has ever seen an object that's frozen almost to absolute zero. There are a lot of ideas and every one of them might be wrong."
    He took a breath. "We'll find out Tuesday."
    NASA is celebrating the record-setting encounter at what is perhaps the Solar System's nerdiest New Year's party.
    At the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), which built and operates the spacecraft, scientists will count down to the moment of New Horizons' closest approach, at 12:33 am Eastern Time (05:33 UTC), then reconvene 10 hours later to watch the first signals from the flyby stream on their screens. (It takes more than six hours for light to travel from Ultima Thule to Earth.)
    NASA's vaunted social media operation, a casualty of the partial government shutdown, has been temporarily restored to cover the event. The countdown, signal acquisition and subsequent news conferences will be streamed live on NASA TV and YouTube.

    MORE AT.....
    NASA Is About to Reach The Farthest Object Yet in The Solar System. Here's How to Watch (LINK)


    #include [ std-disclaimer ]

    Hope the voyage is a long one.
    May there be many a summer morning when,
    with what pleasure, what joy,
    you come into harbors seen for the first time...

    Ithaka, by Cavafy
    (Keeley - Sherrard translation)

  2. #2
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    Default Re: How to Watch NASA Reach The Farthest Object in The Solar System Yet.

    "Wherever there is a channel for water, there is a road for the canoe. " - Thoreau

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Default Re: How to Watch NASA Reach The Farthest Object in The Solar System Yet.

    Step one: Get some REALLY big binoculars...

    Peace,
    What? You Expected More? From Me? Shame On You...

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default Re: How to Watch NASA Reach The Farthest Object in The Solar System Yet.

    My name, and thirty grammes of Clyde Tombaugh's on that.

    Andy, faaar out...
    "We were schooner-rigged and rakish, with a long and lissome hull ..."

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Default Re: How to Watch NASA Reach The Farthest Object in The Solar System Yet.


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