Curiosity Mission

I watched the landing of the newest Mars rover Curiosity last night. It was fun being a part—if just an observer—of this event, and I was moved not only by the accomplishment (amazing!), but by the emotion in the room. It will be exciting to see how this mission unfolds over the next 2+ years.

And how about this? I had said to my family that there would be no pictures of the landing vehicle, since there are no cameras in this area of Mars. But I was wrong! The HiRISE camera on the Mars Reconnaissance orbiter snapped a picture of it with chute deployed. Incredible.

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/msl/news/msl20120806b.html

Solar Dynamics Observatory

I’d heard of the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), but it wasn’t until the Transit of Venus in June that I realized just how amazing were the publicly available resources NASA has provided. Amazing photos and video, the ability to construct time lapses from data, as well as all that they provide to researchers. It is truly gratifying that a small part of my income tax goes to support this amazing project. I wish that more of my tax dollars went to support this kind of research and access.

http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/