Asteroid Close Encounter this Wednesday

 

Tumbling through space, a peanut-shaped asteroid named 4179 Toutatis is expected to pass within a million miles (1.6 million kilometers) of Earth on Wednesday.

Radar images of the three-mile-long (4.6-kilometer-long) asteroid suggest it could be composed of two or three space rocks held together by gravity.

This approach is the closest in this century of any known asteroid at least as big as Toutatis.

Asteroid Close Encounter Coming Wednesday

 

NASA - JPL Solar System Simulator

 

NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab has a nifty website that lets you simulate detailed views of the Solar System, it's wonderful planets and their major moons.

Check out the sample views to get an idea of what this tool can show!
NASA - JPL Solar System Simulator

 

NASA mid-air capture stunt failed

 

It's a bust!!!

NASA pilots wanted to perform a unique stunt today but did not get their chance.

What's this all about?

The Genesis spacecraft returned to Earth after collecting particles of solar wind.

The NASA pilots were to perform a mid-air recovery of the sample return capsule with a helicopter.

The Genesis craft crashed in the Utah desert before it could be captured in a mid-air recovery, because the parachute failed to deploy and the capsule spun out of control.

It is still to be determined if the extraterrestrial matter survived the impact. This material is the first to be returned to Earth by a spacecraft since the U.S. Apollo and Soviet Luna missions brought back moon rocks in the 1970s.

Learn more about Genesis:
Genesis Mission