Take a Walk With NASA "Week 6"
First image from ExoMars
In my week four update, I discussed the status of ExoMars and the demise of the lander. This week, the orbiter took this wonderful photo shown below. The Colour and Stereo Surface Imaging System captured this photo from the Korolev Crater located in Mar's northern hemisphere. According to the European Space Agency (ESA), photos will be regularly released once they fully automate their system (ESA, 2018). I don't know about you, but I am looking forward to seeing more images of what Mars has to offer.
Happy Birthday Hubble Telescope
NASA's Hubble Telescope turned 30 this week as it continues to astound us with its imagery of deep space. Launch in 1990 with a flawed mirror at first, NASA was able to fix the Hubble by "replacing four small mirrors, each the size of a nickel, inside our new camera" (NASA, 2009). The Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2, seen below, solved what could have been a complete disaster for NASA and the Hubble.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL
The Hubble was serviced five times using the Space Shuttle with the final service mission adding the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) and Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3). The COS, seen below, breaks up incoming light in order to determine the chemical composition of the cosmos.
Image Credit: NASA
As for the Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3), seen below, it can survey space and get pictures in near-infrared light, visible light, and near ultraviolet radiation (STSci, n.d.) In fact, you have probably already seen many images from this camera.
Image Credit: NASA
Let me close this week's post with a wonderful video illustrating the wonders Hubble has brought to us. I don't know about you, but I am always fascinated by these images. Space has many wonders and I often ponder how we may be the only ones here. If there is life out there, are they studying us? If they were to come, what kind of welcome would they receive with all the science fiction we have taken in about aliens? That's a philosophical question someone else will have to address.
I hope you've enjoyed my post and stay tuned for next week's update where I'll discuss the soil return mission proposed for Mars.