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New Horizons ready to encounter a Kuiper Belt Object

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  • New Horizons ready to encounter a Kuiper Belt Object

    Taking advantage of the spacecraft's Long-Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI), engineers capture images of potential objects in its vicinity to identify potential hazards as it passes by Kuiper Belt object Ultima Thule. To date, the team is not observing any immediate danger.

    According to the principal investigator, Alan Stern:

    " With that information and a unanimous finding by our mission stakeholders team, I informed NASA that we are “go” to fly by Ultima on the trajectory that yields the best science. As a result, New Horizons will approach to within 3,500 kilometers (about 2,200 miles) of Ultima early on New Year’s Day. There is no longer any chance we will divert to a farther flyby distance with consequently lower-resolution images. "

    Why is New Horizons passing by this Kuiper Belt object?

    " We are flying by Ultima to see a Kuiper Belt object up close for the first time. Ultima is special for two reasons. First, based on its orbit type, we know that Ultima was formed way out where New Horizons is, 4 billion miles away. That means Ultima (officially named 2014 MU69) was formed in the middle of the Kuiper Belt, where temperatures are close to absolute zero.

    Second, because of where it was formed and the fact that Ultima is not large enough to have a geologic engine like Pluto and larger planets, we expect that Ultima is the most well-preserved sample of a planetary building block ever explored. In effect, Ultima should be a valuable window into the early stages of planet formation and what the solar system was like over 4.5 billion years ago.

    What will Ultima reveal? No one knows. To me, that is what’s most exciting—this is pure exploration and fundamental science! "

    - new years day solar system science
    Last edited by inertia; 12-24-18, 10:41 AM.
    "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

    Heisenberg
    .....................

    " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

  • #2
    Originally posted by inertia View Post
    ...<snip>..

    - new years day solar system science
    I'm very disappointed. The farthest exploration -of worlds- in history will not get NASA-provided press releases, social media updates, the planned live NASA webcast due to the government shut-down. It was an unintended consequence of politics getting in the way of science and history.

    "Those wanting to follow New Horizons will have to tune into the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory's YouTube channel and the website (pluto.jhuapl.edu) for updates."

    Quote reference: Florida today
    "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

    Heisenberg
    .....................

    " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by inertia View Post

      I'm very disappointed. The farthest exploration -of worlds- in history will not get NASA-provided press releases, social media updates, the planned live NASA webcast due to the government shut-down. It was an unintended consequence of politics getting in the way of science and history.

      "Those wanting to follow New Horizons will have to tune into the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory's YouTube channel and the website (pluto.jhuapl.edu) for updates."

      Quote reference: Florida today
      Good news about NASA’s shutdown was reported in USA Today stating that NASA will be on board live with the New Horizons discovery mission of Ultima Thule.
      "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

      Heisenberg
      .....................

      " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

      Comment


      • #4
        Will New Horizons park itself for the duration of the government shutdown? It is a nonessential government service.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by simplicio View Post
          Will New Horizons park itself for the duration of the government shutdown? It is a nonessential government service.
          At this point, people will volunteer their time for this historic event. Even so, the government shutdown will have no effect whatsoever on our exploration of the Kuiper belt because it was forward funded.

          The spacecraft is in good condition. The engineering team provided it with a two-second change in the timing of the events tonight (this morning).

          ........

          " There’s no indication of anything anomalous,” said Jeff Moore, a planetary scientist at NASA’s Ames Research Center who leads the part of the New Horizons science team devoted to geology and geophysics investigations. The most recent knowledge update puts us in a very good position to get some really beautiful pictures.

          The biggest challenge in the days leading up to the flyby have not been technical but instead bureaucratic. The partial government shutdown that started Dec. 22 when funding lapsed for some government agencies, including NASA, threw a wrench into plans developed months earlier for publicizing the event. NASA’s shutdown plan states that the agency’s website and social media will not be updated during the shutdown, and that NASA Television will also be offline.

          However, NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said Dec. 27 that NASA TV and social media accounts would continue to operate during the flyby because the contract supporting that work was “forward funded” prior to the shutdown. APL also made plans to broadcast briefings about the flyby on its own social media accounts and website. "

          Quote reference: SpaceNews
          "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

          Heisenberg
          .....................

          " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

          Comment


          • #6
            Data recorded. History made. Distribution with detail later.
            Last edited by inertia; 01-01-19, 02:02 PM.
            "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

            Heisenberg
            .....................

            " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

            Comment


            • #7
              Looks like a bowling pin. Might be two object though. Pictures with greater detail expected in the next two days. Yay!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Zaphod View Post
                Looks like a bowling pin. Might be two object though. Pictures with greater detail expected in the next two days. Yay!
                Yes. Less pixelated images are emerging.



                Are their bowling pins missing in your local alley?

                "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

                Heisenberg
                .....................

                " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by inertia View Post
                  Data recorded. History made. Distribution with detail later.
                  Looks like a success, but going to take months for all the data to get back!! Note to NASA, Kuiper Belt WiFi is terrible.
                  "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by 4tune8chance View Post

                    Looks like a success, but going to take months for all the data to get back!! Note to NASA, Kuiper Belt WiFi is terrible.
                    The previous image was "so 2018".



                    A demonstration of accretion theory?
                    "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

                    Heisenberg
                    .....................

                    " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by inertia View Post
                      Data recorded. History made. Distribution with detail later.
                      Comets Vs Kuiper Belt Objects

                      "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

                      Heisenberg
                      .....................

                      " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by inertia View Post
                        ...<snip>...
                        " Obtained with the wide-angle Multicolor Visible Imaging Camera (MVIC) component of New Horizons' Ralph instrument, this image was taken when the KBO was 4,200 miles (6,700 kilometers) from the spacecraft, at 05:26 UT (12:26 a.m. EST) on Jan. 1 – just seven minutes before closest approach. With an original resolution of 440 feet (135 meters) per pixel, the image was stored in the spacecraft's data memory and transmitted to Earth on Jan. 18-19. Scientists then sharpened the image to enhance fine detail. (This process – known as deconvolution – also amplifies the graininess of the image when viewed at high contrast.) "



                        For additional information: http://pluto.jhuapl.edu/News-Center/...sPE5_Ixm1lMLaI
                        "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

                        Heisenberg
                        .....................

                        " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Just amazing
                          "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away"

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by 4tune8chance View Post
                            Just amazing
                            This asteroid is a good example of accretion theory.
                            "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

                            Heisenberg
                            .....................

                            " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by inertia View Post

                              This asteroid is a good example of accretion theory.
                              Updated Photographs provide a better perspective:


                              "The exact sciences also start from the assumption that in the end it will always be possible to understand nature, even in every new field of experience, but that we make no a priori assumptions about the meaning of the word "understand"."

                              Heisenberg
                              .....................

                              " It is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and it is the glory of a king to search out a matter. " ( Proverbs 25:2 )

                              Comment

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