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NASA is an acronym which refers to the National Aeronautic and Space Administration which was formed in the year 1958 under President Dwight Eisenhower. NASA’s vision is aimed at reaching new heights and revealing the unknown in order that what they do can be beneficial to all mankind. To be able to do this, thousands of people in NASA have been working around the globe for the past 50 years with a view to answering some common basic questions like for instance what is in the space, how to get there and what will be found. Furthermore, NASA has been responsible for the development of applications meant for space technology through combinations of pursuits in developing of communication and weather satellites (Pellerin, 2009).
Over several years, NASA has sent several unmanned missions into space which have generally been successful for the objectives they were set to achieve. Among these missions include the Messenger, Rover, Ibex, LCROSS, Voyager among others. Among one of these successful missions is the Aura which was meant to understand and protect the air that human beings breathe. The Aura Mission, in which the word Aura is a Latin word meaning breeze was launched on the 15th of July in 2004 was dedicated towards the monitoring and evaluation of the complex interactions which affected the earth or globe through the use of Data systems and NASA satellites. In particular, the Aura Mission in particular was designed to answer questions related to the changes in the life sustaining atmosphere.
One of the major missions of NASA that is worth mentioning is the Deep Impact Mission which was a NASA probe into space that was launched on the 12th of January 2005 at 18: 47 UTC and completed its mission on 25th of November 2010 even though its duration is still ongoing. The major aim of the Deep Impact Mission conducted by NASA was to study the comet’s interior composition in the 9P/Tempel through releasing an impactor that was thrown into the comet. On the 4th o July at exactly 5:52 UTC in the year 2005, the impactor collided successfully with the nucleus of the comet. The impact generated from this collision generated debris from the nucleus interior part and therefore allowing accessibility of the photographs arising from the impact crater. Out of the photographs obtained from the collision, it wasdepicted that the comet was less icy and dustier than had been expected by the members who had conducted this mission. The destination of this mission was therefore the Comet. The view of the impact crater was obscured unexpectedly as a result of the bright and large dust of cloud. The Deep Impact Mission is highly respected and remembered because it was the first mission that was able to eject some materials or debris from the surface of the comet. As a result of this mission’s success, it garnered a lot of publicity from the amateur astronomers, international scientists and the media in general.
After the completion of the Deep Impact’s primary Mission, further proposals were made in order to utilize the spacecraft. It was after these proposals that the Deep Impact Mission was consequently able to fly the Earth’s surface once again on the 31st of December 2007 through another mission which was designated as EPOXI in order to study the Comet Hartley and the extra solar planets. The mission of the Deep Impact was therefore planned in order to aid in answering crucial or vital queries concerning comets like for instance what the depth of the crater would be obtained from the impact, the components of the nucleus in the comet and the origin and formation of the comet. Through the observation of the comet’s composition, the astronomers were sure or at least had the hopes of ascertaining how comets formed based on the variation between the exterior and interior make up of this comet. It was from the observation of the impact that was generated coupled with the aftermath that would easily allow the astronomers a chance in attempting to ascertain the answers towards numerous questions that had existed before (Angelo 2006).
To ascertain why the Deep Impact Mission became a great success, it is vital that one knows vital details concerning this mission. The Deep Impact Mission was operated by NASA/JPL while its major contractors were JPL and Ball Aerospace. The Deep Impact Mission also had a Flyby of Temple 1, Hartley 2 and the launch vehicle that was used was known as Delta II-7925. It should also be noted that the Deep Impact Mission was launched at Cape Canaveral Air force station and specifically at 17B Space Launch Complex. It is also of importance to note that the Deep Impact had an average weight of 650 Kilograms which are equivalent to 1,400 lb while the impactor on the other hand had a weight of 370 kilograms which were equivalent to 820 lb. nonetheless, the Deep Impact mission relied on 620 watts of solar array and NiH2 Battery.
The name of the Mission “Deep Impact” was coined because of the manner in which the comet striked the Earth. What made it a coincidence was the fact that this name was coined by both creators of the film and the scientists who were behind the mission coined the same name independently and around the same time. After its launch on the 12th of January 2005, the Space craft with the Deep Impact traveled in 174 days covering around 429 kilometers to reach the comet at a speed of 64, 000mph (28.6 km/s). When the spacecraft had arrived the locality of the cornet on the 3rd of July 2005, it separated itself into two sections a flyby probe and an impactor. In order to move into the comet’s path, the impactor had to use the thrusters which impacted 24 hours later at a speed of 23,000 mph. In order to excavate a crater that was equivalent to 100m or 328 feet wide, the scientists strongly believed that an energy which comprised of high velocity collision was enough.
The impactor’s success was not realized by the members of the Mission until five minutes later and the news of this success made the control team of the Mission members to applaud and hug each other in happiness. The success of this mission also became notable because of its promotional activities in which they coined “Send Your Name To A Comet”. Through this promotional activity, a total of 625,000 names were attached to an impactor through which they hitched for along ride in the best fireworks show in the prestigious in the space history (Russell 2005).
NASA is still remembered for the various missions it has conducted over the years with a view to ascertaining and unraveling some mysteries concerning some specific questions. It has diligently done this through carrying out various scientific tests in the airspace with a view of benefiting mankind through various researches concerning the earth and the world as a whole. All and sundry should therefore appreciate the efforts of members of various missions who risked their lives with a view of getting more knowledge that could be beneficial to all without discrimination.