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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1answer
15 views

Are there any close-up photos of the screens used in the MOCR2 from the Apollo era where text features can be distinguished?

The question is mostly about the fonts used in those screens. AFAIK, the images were slides superimposed with data generated by computers that was captured from CRTs by cameras and piped into the MOCR ...
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Are the lines on the wheels of the Mars 2020 rover wavy? If so, why?

CNET's NASA narrows down Mars 2020 rover names: Hello, Fido? includes the image below. I'm not sure if the rover is moving and a rolling shutter was in use, or if the lines on the wheels are really ...
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Where can I find FOIA requests to NASA and their subsequent replies?

NASA official page compiles Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) information requests here. https://www.nasa.gov/FOIA/elibrary Above page lists few xlsx files for past few years but links given for ...
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What terminology is used to describe spacecraft in stationkeeping?

Forgive any inaccurate wording of this question. If a Soyuz craft which had been docked at the Zvezda module backed away from the ISS and remained at stationkeeping, would NASA, Roscosmos, or the ESA ...
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If solar radiation can heat up gas particles in the thermosphere, why will it not heat up a spacecraft?

NASA says that the reason why a spacecraft does not get hot in the thermosphere is because there are not enough gas particles to come into contact with the spacecraft to heat it up. If you were ...
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83 views

Dealing with lunar regolith

NASA has announced its intention to return astronauts to the Moon by 2024. Various other questions and answers here address the many dangers and difficulties posed by the fine and abrasive particles ...
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1answer
102 views

Is retired astronaut Scott Kelly now the same height as his brother?

In WIRED's new video Astrophysicist Explains One Concept in 5 Levels of Difficulty | WIRED "Astrophysicist Janna Levin, PhD, is asked to explain the concept of gravity to 5 different people; a child, ...
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132 views

Why did NASA want the Z-2 prototype spacesuit need to mimic the appearance of sportswear?

NASA has been considering a new type of space suit, the Z2 Spacesuit, "in order to protect NASA astronauts embarking on a new class of mission, NASA has to build a new class of space suit. Far off ...
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2answers
175 views

Why was the reusability of the SSMEs so poor, and why was this considered acceptable given their purpose to launch a reusable vehicle?

The Space Shuttle Main Engines operated for around 8.5 minutes in every Shuttle launch, yet were removed from the orbiter after each flight and went through an overhaul, parts often being traded from ...
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Does NASA use any of the twilight designations?

Do the differences in civilian, nautical, and astronomical twilight have any technical relevance to NASA either on Earth or any other object in the solar system where a probe has landed? Does NASA ...
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122 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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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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106 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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173 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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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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175 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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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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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, ...
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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 ...
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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. ...
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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 ...
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1answer
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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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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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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 ...
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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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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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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: ...
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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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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 ...
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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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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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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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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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146 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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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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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
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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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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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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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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
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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
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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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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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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 ...
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386 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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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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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 ...