Questions tagged [nasa]

Questions pertaining to activities of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, a United States government agency that deals with space exploration and research.

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5
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1answer
100 views

Did NASA ever supply astronauts with canned food?

Looking through information regarding food for ISS, one thing caught my eye: a lot of canned food for Russian cosmonauts (as a side note, they apparently have bread (and crackers!) there too (...
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51 views

Short documentary about spacesuit seamstresses

I'm trying to find a short documentary video about people who sew together NASA spacesuits. I saw it quite some time ago -- at least 20 years, maybe longer. Quite possibly on PBS, maybe the Spokane ...
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1answer
92 views

Mars mission success rate vs. outer planets success rate

I've heard discussion of the Mars Curse, with the very high failure rate of missions to the planet. Comparing NASA Mars missions to NASA outer solar system missions since the beginnings of the 1970's ...
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1answer
166 views

From commercial pilot to astronaut

With enough work and effort, is it possible for a commercial pilot to become a NASA astronaut? If a candidate astronaut who is a commercial pilot met all of the requirement apart from a type rating ...
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1answer
1k views

If I wanted to reconstruct an entire Apollo mission's crewed spacecraft trajectories, what are the key sources of historical data I'd look for?

The last few images in Robert A. Braeunig's Apollo 11's Translunar Trajectory; and how they avoided the heart of the radiation belts are fascinating and a bit perplexing as discussed in this answer ...
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161 views

Reentry without pressure suits in Apollo: was there a formal risk assesment?

In Apollo 11 Flight Journal the following is stated: The crew will make re-entry without suits or helmets on. Although this was a controversial decision on the first Apollo flight, Apollo 7, when ...
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13 views

To what extent will JAXA and NASA coordinate their studies of material returned from Ryugu and Bennu by Hyabusa2 and OSIRIS-Rex?

Livescience.com's Your RNA May Have Come from Space, Meteor Study Suggests is mostly about the chemical analysis of the insides of meteorites recovered on Earth reported in PNAS, but one paragraph is ...
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111 views

How did Conrad let Bean drive Apollo 12? Did anyone get in trouble?

In the NPR News item and podcast It's Been 50 Years Since Apollo 12 Landed On The Moon reporter Geoff Brumfiel says: The trip back went smoothly. Conrad let Bean drive the spaceship a little bit, ...
3
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1answer
88 views

How often did Apollo astronauts wear red helmets?

Images of NAsA astronaut David R. Scott performing a spacewalk during Apollo 9 show a red helmet. When did NASA's use of red-colored helmets begin, and when did it end, and was there a special name ...
4
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1answer
125 views

Are there any active or recent projects investigating skyhooks for orbital lift?

On the Wikipedia page for skyhooks, the most recent entry in "History" describes a 2001 effort by the Boeing Phantom Works to draft a proposal for a skyhook system for NASA under the name of HASTOL. ...
2
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1answer
121 views

Security during a NASA launch rehearsal test

Am I correct in assuming that security during a launch rehearsal test is very high? That all the people working in the service structure have been well vetted and it is highly improbable that someone ...
2
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1answer
83 views

What exactly has “changed” about the way that NASA will procure technology for the Artemis program?

A video in the Space.com article NASA Taps Maxar to Build Lunar Gateway Power Module for Artemis Moon Plan shows the NASA director explaining the series Artemis 1, 2, 3... and announcing that the ...
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0answers
80 views

Looking for help in drawing diagrams to explain graphically NASA Horizons output

I searched a lot for a javascript library or a REST API to access full functionalities of powerful NASA Horizons tool, but with no luck, so I am trying to write my own interface, to replace the very ...
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184 views

Why are space tools shiny

I was watching one of the broadcasts of a space walk on the ISS. I noticed the Pistol Grip Tool (Thanks Courageous Potato) looks like its made of polished stainless steel. Why do these tools have ...
4
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1answer
109 views

Why are Viking LR results not sufficient evidence of life on Mars?

Gil Levin, one of the scientists involved with the 1976 Viking mission to Mars, has claimed and continues to claim that there is life on Mars, based off the positive results of the Labeled Release (LR)...
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75 views

Risk to “NASA’S ICON satellite” if PG&E shut off UC Berkeley's Space Sciences Laboratory's power?

The San Jose Mercury News article How PG&E’s power shutdown threatened a NASA mission describes a last minute rush to obtain extension cords, generators, and access to backup fuel when it was ...
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1answer
191 views

What does this NASA administrator's tweeted statement mean? What is the context? [closed]

Background: Teslarati's NASA head calls out SpaceX CEO Elon Musk over Starship event in bizarre statement might serve as a resource for answers if the question is successfully reopened. Question: ...
2
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1answer
47 views

What is the name of the new NEO searching telescope “heavily based on” NEOCam?

Space.com's NASA Wants a New Space Telescope to Protect Us All from Dangerous Asteroids quotes "Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for the Science Mission Directorate" several times, including ...
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143 views

Cable lacing in spaceflight, when was waxed cord forbidden?

During the sixties of last century traditional cable lacing was done using a thin cord, traditionally made of waxed linen. The wax should improve knot retention. From NASA-STD-8739-4. Using waxed ...
2
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1answer
98 views

For which “2 billion dollar spacecraft launched in 1999” did NASA “specially design” an Aronson Trolley Positioner?

This answer to What are those tilting/rotating platforms called that hold spacecraft during assembly, testing, and sometimes transport? quotes this Weld Plus website as follows: (The) Aronson ...
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2answers
148 views

How often has NASA brought in people from outside to be responsible for making important decisions?

Spaceflight Now's NASA still looking for new human spaceflight chief says: In August, Bridenstine said NASA is “looking wide and far” for a new human spaceflight chief at NASA Headquarters. “...
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Did “lock the doors” for the Challenger incident also apply to KSC?

The answers to this question explain that "lock the doors" is part of the standard NASA procedure when an accident occurs. Securing the mission control center helps preserve evidence that will be ...
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66 views

What is the “interesting story” on the limitations of NASA's current near Earth object survey network"?

Axios' NASA emails reveal agency's surprise at asteroid's near-miss of Earth cites Buzzfeed's A “Sneaky” Asteroid Narrowly Missed Earth This Summer. Internal Emails Show How NASA Scientists Totally ...
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4answers
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Why does NASA publish all the results/data it gets?

I was curious about why NASA publishes all the results/data from its operations. Does the USA have a law that mandates it or is it a voluntary contribution to the world?
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Why did Kennedy have four control rooms but Houston had only two?

Kennedy Space Center has four firing control rooms, one for each bay in the Vehicle Assembly Building. After launch, authority was transferred to the mission control center in Houston. For the ...
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1answer
144 views

How did NASA decide on its missions?

Does anyone know how NASA decided on what to do and what missions to follow? Was it something that was decided internally, or were missions ordered by the federal government?
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66 views

Is this a NASA building in the background?

The Washington Post video It's looking more and more likely there will be a Tropical Storm Humberto near Florida shows some footage with the caption "Titusville Fla." and I've included a screen shot ...
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27 views

How many times was NASA's Cassini mission extended?

To the question Chandrayaan 2: How has life of the orbiter increased from 1 year to more than 7 years? I was going to mention Juno and Cassini, but I couldn't figure out if I should say that Cassini ...
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4answers
6k views

Are there any space probes or landers which regained communication after being lost?

Recently, ISRO Vikram lander of Chandrayaan 2 lost its communication just before 2.1 km from lunar surface. ISRO staff still trying to regain the signals. Are there any space probes/landers which ...
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1answer
118 views

What do all these vectors point to in this New Horizons trajectory/operations simulation?

Sir Brian May's New Horizons music video (below) shows an animation of the spacecraft and its launch vehicle from countdown to MU69 Ultima Thule. Part way through the video at about ...
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1answer
183 views

Why does this photo of the Hubble Space Telescope look so weird?

Question: Can someone identify this photograph of the Hubble Space Telescope seen as a still in the Los Angeles Times YouTube video Scientists witness huge cosmic crash, find origins of gold, figure ...
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What are these two SPHERES doing?

In her tweet ISS expedition 59/60/61 astronaut Christina Koch shows two SPHERES doing something. What are they doing exactly? Why do they appear to be connected? Had a blast cheering on the ...
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2answers
414 views

How has NASA's mission operations software architecture evolved?

As many of us know, the mission operations software of NASA has changed significantly over time. Needs have changed with the space program and mission operations software has adapted to keep up with ...
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1answer
78 views

Why isn't NASA having a ground-based solar panel to charge the Li-ion batteries on board the JPL Mars Helicopter? [duplicate]

Why isn't NASA having a ground-based solar panel to charge the Li-ion batteries on board the JPL Mars Helicopter? They say that it is going to take a day for the current on-board Solar Panels to ...
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1answer
4k views

Did Wernher von Braun really have the “Saturn V painted as the V2”?

A comment below the question Did von Braun have “a thing” for fins? Why did Saturn I block 2 get fins because it's a “von Braun” rocket? suggests that Wernher von Braun had the "Saturn V painted as ...
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4answers
10k views

During the Space Shuttle Columbia Disaster of 2003, Why Did The Flight Director Say, “Lock the doors.”?

Why does the NASA Flight Director say, "Lock the doors.", when realizing that disaster had struck for Space Shuttle Columbia, back in 2003? Does he mean lock the doors on the space shuttle that's ...
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3answers
6k views

Does the Voyager team use a wrapper (Fortran(77?) to Python) to transmit current commands?

I assume that the vast majority of the people who created the software for these missions are now retired (the "space pensioners" of the Voyager mission). Here's a very good summary of the current ...
3
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2answers
268 views

Stanley Kubrick used a NASA-inspired lens to film by candlelight in Barry Lyndon, but what did NASA use it for?

At 07:35 in the CinemaTyler video How Kubrick Achieved the Beautiful Cinematography of Barry Lyndon he says: As far back as 2001: A Space Odyssey, Kubrick and ...
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2answers
191 views

Could NASA go back to the Moon? [closed]

Even after launching so many space missions, including the one which led Man to the Moon (Apollo 11, July 1969), NASA made several mistakes even in the space programs that followed. For e.g. Space ...
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1answer
524 views

Which Voyager spacecraft “mutinied”, and what really happened?

The August 2017 BBC News Science in Action podcast The Algae that Changed the Earth includes other topics, including the following: In August and September 1977, Nasa's probes Voyager 2 and ...
4
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1answer
177 views

Why did NASA sent people to the Moon more than once? [duplicate]

Often, especially now with the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission, the question is asked: Why did we stop sending people to the moon. The answer is usually: because the USA had proved they ...
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1answer
204 views

Which unit system was used by german rocket scientists at NASA for calculations?

There were numerous german rocket scientists at NASA, see wikipedia 1, 2. They were used to the metric system which they used when working for the V-2 at Penemünde. But what unit system did they use ...
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112 views

What do these three historical IBM staff at NASA insignias designate?

The question Where are these historical IBM + Apollo related locations within NASA? What do these computers do? shows four images. Three of them show different IBM insignias on shirts of IBM staff. ...
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1answer
154 views

Where are these historical IBM + Apollo related locations within NASA? What do these computers do?

In the Fortune Magazine video IBM's Moonshot: Past and Future with the notes BM’s John Kelly reflects on Apollo 11’s historic mission and looks forward to what future technology will accomplish. ...
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3answers
14k views

Why did NASA use U.S customary units?

NASA was using U.S customary units (inches, feet, nautical miles, pounds, tons, US gallons etc.) during the Mercury and Apollo programmes, and beyond. There are significant disadvantages to using U.S ...
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2answers
6k views

Why didn't NASA launch communications relay satellites for the Apollo missions?

The Apollo missions were in communications blackout when the spacecraft's orbit took it to the far side of the Moon. During the missions, the craft had to perform maneuvers such as the lunar orbit ...
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2answers
352 views

Why is there no video of the first steps of Apollo 16 and 17?

In doing research in to the first words said on the surface of the various Apollo astronauts, I found there was no video of Apollo 16 and 17, at least until they had been on the surface for a while. ...
3
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1answer
86 views

What are “uncoupled attitude maneuvers” and why do them?

This answer to the question Apollo-11 delta-v “due to residual pressure in the docking tunnel pushing the spacecraft apart” detected as it happened? Was it corrected? quotes the following passage from ...
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8answers
4k views

How much did all the space agencies spent on rockets launching and space exploration? What are the benefits for me and you? [closed]

I thought about how much does one rocket cost to build and launch and it came up with roughly $500 million including everything. That made me pause and wonder for myself what it is that's out there ...
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1answer
3k views

In this iconic lunar orbit rendezvous photo of John Houbolt, why do arrows #5 and #6 point the “wrong” way?

The NPR.org news item Meet John Houbolt: He Figured Out How To Go To The Moon, But Few Were Listening shows the iconic photo of John Houbolt next to a black board showing a free return scenario. I ...