New Frontier of
in Space Odyssey
|International Space Station. Expedition One crew. Liquid water on Mars. Shuttle Radar Topography mapping. SOHO sees turbulent Sun. NEAR at asteroid Eros. TRACE solar mystery. Largest-ever ozone hole. Two decades of Mars exploration.|
International Space Station adventure begins with Expedition One crew
The arrival of the Zvezda service module cleared the way for the Expedition One crew to launch a new era in space history Oct. 31. American Commander Shepherd and his Russian crewmates, Yuri Gidzenko and Sergei Krikalev lifted off in a Russian Soyuz spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to make their new home aboard the International Space Station.
Learn more about International Space Station Alpha
Evidence of liquid water found on Mars
Imaging scientists using data from NASA's Mars Global Surveyor camera spacecraft found features that suggest there may be current sources of liquid water at or near the surface of the red planet. Studies of later images by Mars Global Surveyor revealed layers of sedimentary rock that paint a portrait of an early Mars filled with numerous lakes and shallow seas.
Learn more about water on Mars
Shuttle Radar Topography mapping is a stunning success
The Space Shuttle Endeavour served as an Earth observatory early in 2000 during STS-99. The Shuttle Radar Topography Mission was a breakthrough in the science of remote sensing and produced topographic maps of Earth 30 times as precise as the best global maps in use today. The information collected will help produce one of the most comprehensive and accurate maps of Earth ever assembled.
Learn more about the shuttle radar topography mission
SOHO sees turbulent side of the Sun
A week's advance warning of potential bad weather in space is now possible thanks to the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft. With a technique that uses ripples on the Sun's visible surface to probe its interior, SOHO scientists have, for the first time, imaged solar storm regions on the far side of the Sun, the side facing away from the Earth.
Learn more about the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory
Technology to ease flight delays and improve runway safety
The Aircraft Vortex Spacing System can predict aircraft wake turbulence on final approach, so airliners can be spaced more safely and efficiently. NASA's Runway Incursion Prevention System is designed to prevent runway incursion incidents by giving pilots and air traffic controllers earlier warnings.
Learn more about the Aircraft Vortex Spacing System
NEAR spacecraft flies close to asteroid Eros
The Shoemaker Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous (NEAR) mission became the first spacecraft to orbit an asteroid Feb. 15. NEAR's close encounter with the asteroid Eros brought the spacecraft within 3 miles (5 kilometers) of the space rock. The mission returned stunning images and other data on the object, which is also known as asteroid 433.
Learn more about the Shoemaker Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous mission
TRACE illuminates a superheated solar mystery
Giant fountains of fast-moving, multi-million degree gas in the outermost atmosphere of the Sun revealed an important clue in Sept. to a long standing mystery - the heating source that makes the corona 300 times hotter than the Sun's visible surface. NASA's Transition Region and Coronal Explorer (TRACE) captured dramatic images of the immense coils of hot, electrified gas, known as coronal loops.
Learn more about NASA's TRACE
Largest-ever ozone hole is observed
A NASA spectrometer has detected an Antarctic ozone "hole" (what scientists call an "ozone depletion area") that is three times larger than the entire land mass of the United States, nearly 11 million square miles - the largest such area ever observed. Although production of ozone-destroying gases has been curtailed under international agreements, concentrations of the gases in the stratosphere are only now reaching their peak. Researchers believe it may be many decades before the ozone hole is no longer an annual occurrence.
Learn more about the ozone hole
Bio-feedback technology developed for video games
A unique interactive system developed for NASA by Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, VA, trains people to change their brainwave activity while playing off-the-shelf video games. This mind-over-matter technique is combined with hand-eye coordination to create video games that can actually improve your health.
Learn more about the brainwave technique
NASA plans two decades of Mars exploration
By means of orbiters, landers, sample return missions and next-generation super rovers, NASA revamped its campaign to explore Mars. The comprehensive exploration proposal is poised to unravel the secrets of the red planet's past environments, the history of Martian rocks, its watery legacy and possible evidence of past or present life.
Learn more about NASA's Mars plans
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