Press Release

NASA Daily News Summary – Media Advisory m00-023

By SpaceRef Editor
February 8, 2000
Filed under

NASA Daily News Summary
For Release: Feb. 8, 2000
Media Advisory m00-023

SUMMARY

NEWS RELEASES:
SOHO SPACECRAFT BAGS 102 COMETS

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SOHO SPACECRAFT BAGS 102 COMETS

The record is to comet-hunting what Mark McGwire1s home-run streak is to
baseball: In just four years of operation, the Solar and Heliospheric
Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft has found 102 comets, making it by far the most
successful comet-hunter in history.

Headquarters contact: Dolores Beasley (Phone: 202/358-1753)

Goddard Space Flight Center contact: William Steigerwald
(Phone: 301/286-5017)

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VIDEO:

Video File Advisory for Feb. 8, 2000
v00-24

Item 1: SOHO – The Greatest Comet Hunter

Center Contact: Bill Steigerwald (301) 286-5017
HQ Contact: Don Savage (202) 358-1727

TRT: 1:38

Suicidal comets take the spotlight with the Solar Heliospheric
Observatory (SOHO). This satellite watches for Coronal Mass Ejections CMEs
that can threaten Earth’s space environment and views the sun by
blotting out the bright solar disk. A spectacular sideshow has been the
comet discoveries and their amazing images. After only four years of
operation, SOHO has already imaged 102 comets, most of which were
vaporized in the extreme solar atmosphere.

Item 1a COMET HIGHLIGHTS

Sun-grazing comets, seen as early as 372 BC, are believed to be the
fragments from one great comet which split again and again producing the
Kreutz sun-grazer family of comets.

a. The 100th Comet Imaged on 4 February 2000
b. Pair of sun-grazing comets on 2 June 1998
c. Observation of sun-grazer on 10-13 April 1998
d. LASCO Christmas Comet of 1996 (two views).

ITEM 1b SOHO SPACECRAFT ANIMATION

Animation of the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO).

Replays from the Feb. 7 budget briefing

Item 2 – FY 2001 budget briefing video
Video includes animation and b-roll from NASA disciplines related to
Administrator
Goldin’s briefing

Item 3 – Living With A Star
Contact Info: Wade Sisler 301-286-6256
Dolores Beasley 202-358-1747

Synopsis: Our Sun is a tremendously powerful, violent, and variable star like
many we
can see in the night sky. To better study solar variability and understand its
effects on
humanity, NASA is starting a multi-year program called “Living With a Star,” a
set of
missions and enhancements to current programs which will provide new capability
for
understanding, and ultimately predicting “solar weather” and its effect on
Earth.

ITEM 3a SPACE WEATHER NETWORK

To better study solar variability and understand its effects on humanity, NASA
is starting a
program called “Living With a Star”, a set of missions and enhancements to
current
programs which will eventually encompass a number of spacecraft and systems.
“Living
With a Star” also will pursue partnerships with other Federal agencies which are
concerned with the effects of the Sun on the Earth. The goal is to provide an
exciting new
capability for understanding, and ultimately predicting, “solar weather” which
affects Earth.

ITEM 3b SOLAR SENTINALS

“Living With a Star” will introduce a new suite of spacecraft called Solar
Sentinels. For the
first time, scientists will be able to track solar storm regions over the entire
solar surface as
it rotates.

ITEM 3c TECHNOLOGICAL ADVANCES

“Living With a Star” will use our most creative and advanced technologies in the
construction of this outer space network of sentinels and scientific spacecraft.
This
animation sequence shows show a satellite using large Solar sails, somewhat like
those
used in the days of sailing ships for propulsion. The sails on these new
satellites will use
the energy in sunlight, rather than traditional rocket propulsion, to get to
their orbits.

ITEM 3d EFFECTS OF SPACE WEATHER

As civilization becomes more technically advanced and expands into space both
physically and economically, we are finding that Solar variability can affect
civilian and
military space systems, human space flight, electric power grids, GPS signals,
high
frequency radio communications, long range radar, microelectronics and
terrestrial
climate.

ITEM 3e OUR VIOLENT SUN

Our Sun is a tremendously powerful, violent, and variable star like many we can
see in the
night sky. These images were captured by the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory
(SOHO).

*** Courtesy NASA/ESA

ITEM 3f SOLAR RESEARCHER B-ROLL

Solar Scientists at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

ITEM 3g EARTH WEATHER NETWORKS

Just as satellites help us better understand changes in weather around our
Earth, the
“Living With a Star” constellation of satellites will help us better understand
how our star
can affect many of the advanced technologies we have become so dependent on for
everything from economic livelihood to national defense.

ITEM 3h INTERVIEW EXCERPTS

Dr. Art Poland
Astrophysicist
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
Greenbelt, MD

Item 4 – NASA’s Earth Sciences: Top imagery from 1999

Item 4a Seawifs: Before and after flood still images from North Carolina–
October 1999.
Item 4b Landsat 7: Flyover of Manhattan–April 1999.
Item 4c Radarsat flyover/around of Antarctica–November 1999.
Item 4d Landsat views: Urban growth of the Baltimore/Washington corridor–April
1999.

Item 5 – NASA’s Aerospace Technology

Item 5a Animation of the SATS, Small Aircraft Transportation System
Item 5b Animation of the X-34 Technology Demonstrator
Item 5c Animation of the X-33 Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV)

Item 6 – NASA’s Space Shuttle Program

Item 6a Space Shuttle Upgrades: footage includes launch, in-flight activity,
and landing of the STS-88 crew

In FY2000, the Space Shuttle program recommended three high priority safety
upgrades, including electric auxiliary power units, advanced health
monitoring for the orbiter main engines and avionics and cockpit upgrades.
By incorporating these three upgrades, the reliability of the Shuttle
during ascent almost doubles.

During the FY 2001 budget process additional high priority safety upgrades
were identified that will further increase the reliability of the Space
Shuttle during ascent. They include upgrades to the Space Shuttle main engines,
the solid rocket boosters and solid rocket motor propellant and the welding
process
used on the external tank.

Before hardware development, an external review of the strategy will be
conducted to assure that NASA has set the right priorities.

Item 6b International Space Station animation

Item 6c Glass Cockpit

In FY 2000 the Space Shuttle program recommended a new “glass cockpit,”
called the Multifunction Electronic Display Subsystem, as a high priority
safety upgrade for the Space Shuttle.
Atlantis, the first orbiter to receive the glass cockpit, is scheduled for
its first flight with the new system in April 2000.
During the FY 2001 budget process, additional high priority safety upgrades
were identified that will further increase the reliability of the Space
Shuttle during ascent.

Item 7 – X-38 Tests Largest Parafoil Ever – JSC (replay)

Headquarters Contact: Kirsten Williams 202/358-0243
JSC Contact: James Hartsfield 281/483-5111

Item 8 – New Results Show Which Way the Wind Blows over the Oceans- JPL (replay)

Headquarters Contact: Dave Steitz 202/358-1730
JPL Contact: Diane Ainsworth 818/354-5011

Item 9 – Astro-E: X-ray Technology Testbed (replay)

Item 10 – “The Emotion of Space”: NASA video on the excitement and challenges of
exploration in the next few years. TRT: 3:30

HQ Contact: Ray Castillo 202/358-4555

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TV Producers:

Please note all times, unless otherwise noted, are Eastern Time.

This heads-up announces our most current line-up of stories on
NASA’s daily Video File feed. As we try to provide you the best,
most current service possible, THE LINE-UP MAY CHANGE THROUGHOUT
THE DAY.

Any CHANGES TO THE LINE-UP WILL APPEAR ON THE NASA VIDEO FILE
ADVISORY on the web at
ftp://ftp.hq.nasa.gov/pub/pao/tv-advisory/nasa-tv.txt
WE UPDATE THE ADVISORY THROUGHOUT THE DAY.

The NASA Video File normally airs at noon, 3:00 p.m., 6:00 p.m.,
9:00 p.m. and midnight Eastern Time. NASA Television is available
on GE-2, transponder 9C at 85 degrees West longitude, with
vertical polarization. Frequency is on 3880.0 megahertz, with
audio on 6.8 megahertz.

For general questions about the video file call NASA Headquarters,
Washington, DC: Ray Castillo 202/358-4555 or Elvia Thompson
202/358-1696.

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Contract Awards

NASA HEADQUARTERS AWARDS RESEARCH SUPPORT CONTRACT
ftp://ftp.hq.nasa.gov/pub/pao/contract/2000/c00-b.txt

Contract awards are posted to the NASA Acquisition information
Service Web site: http://procurement.nasa.gov/EPS/award.html

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The NASA Daily News Summary is issued each business day at
approximately 2 p.m. Eastern time. Members of the media who wish
to subscribe or unsubscribe from this list, please send e-mail
message to:

Brian.Dunbar@hq.nasa.gov

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end of daily news summary

SpaceRef staff editor.