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Shuttle news briefing
The Stafford-Covey Return to Flight Task Group's co-chairmen, former astronauts Tom Stafford and Dick Covey, hold a news conference Thursday to update reporters on NASA's efforts to prepare the next space shuttle mission. (47min 01sec file)
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Nearing the U.S.
From 230 miles above Earth, International Space Station astronaut Mike Fincke talks to Mission Control while an external camera watches Hurricane Ivan on Wednesday as the storm moved closer to landfall. (4min 53sec file)
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Ivan in the Gulf
As Hurricane Ivan moved into the Gulf of Mexico, this video recorded Tuesday evening aboard the International Space Station shows the storm and spectacular views of the eye. (6min 00sec file)
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Ivan over Cuba
This video of Hurricane Ivan from the International Space Station was recorded Monday as the storm passed over the western portion of Cuba. (4min 34sec file)
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Hurricane Ivan
Cameras on the International Space Station see Hurricane Ivan as the orbiting complex flies over the powerful storm on Saturday. (3min 05sec file)
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Genesis recovered
Workers recover the Genesis solar wind samples from the impact crater and take the equipment into a facility for examination. (2min 08sec file)
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Tour of KSC hurricane damage
Martin Wilson, manager of the Thermal Protection System Facility, gives a tour of the highly damaged building at Kennedy Space Center in the wake of Hurricane Frances. (2min 31sec file)
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Inside the VAB
Go inside Kennedy Space Center's hurricane-battered Vehicle Assembly Building and also see the damage to the 52-story tall facility's roof. (2min 51sec file)
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Genesis crash lands
The Genesis sample return capsule tumbles through the sky and impacts the desert floor in Utah after its speed-slowing chute and parafoil failed to deploy for a mid-air recovery by a helicopter. (2min 29sec file)
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Slow-motion
This slow-motion video shows the Genesis capsule slamming into the ground. (1min 06sec file)
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Aerial views of crater
Aerial views show the Genesis capsule half buried in the Utah desert floor after its landing system suffered a failure. (1min 53sec file)
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Radical Antarctic telescope 'would outdo Hubble'
ANGLO-AUSTRALIAN OBSERVATORY NEWS RELEASE
Posted: September 17, 2004

A novel Antarctic telescope with 16-m diameter mirrors would far outperform the Hubble Space Telescope, and could be built at a tiny fraction of its cost, says a scientist from the Anglo-Australian Observatory in Sydney, Australia.


On the right is the corrector: a nearly flat, steerable reflector. This receives the light from the sky and directs it onto the primary mirror, over at the left. The primary focuses the light onto a prime focus unit lying halfway between the two mirrors. The prime focus unit could be a number of things: a camera, a device that holds optical fibres for capturing the light, or a secondary mirror reflecting the light through a central hole in the primary mirror. Credit: Andrew McGrath, AAO
 
Tests by a team from the University of New South Wales, reported in the journal Nature this week, show that the Dome C site in the Australian Antarctic Territory is by far the best place ever tested on Earth for doing infrared and optical astronomy.

"A telescope there would perform as well as a much larger one anywhere else on Earth. It's nearly as good as being in space", said Dr. Will Saunders of the Anglo-Australian Observatory.

At the SPIE Astronomical Telescopes and Instrumentation conference in Glasgow in June, Dr. Saunders presented a concept for an unusual telescope that's well matched to the special conditions at Dome C, both in its optical design and in the way it's built.

It looks nothing like other telescopes. Much of it could be built of icecrete-snow compressed to form blocks as hard as concrete - while its mirrors could be made of the glass used for office windows.

Under the superb atmospheric conditions at Dome C this simple telescope could make razor-sharp images of large areas of sky.


This is a nearly flat, steerable reflector. It receives the light from the sky and directs it onto the telescope's primary mirror. Credit: Andrew McGrath, AAO
 
Dr. Saunders estimates that his design would cost about a fifth as much as one of the extremely large telescopes now being planned. These have mirrors 30-100 m in diameter and price tags of US$700 million and up. The Hubble Space Telescope cost a few times more: about US$2.2 billion at launch.

"With this simple telescope you could do the exquisite imaging that the extremely large telescopes plan to do, at a fraction of their cost" Dr. Saunders said. "But, unlike them, this telescope would also be a great survey instrument, able to map the whole sky with Hubble-like clarity."

Ares 1-X Patch
The official embroidered patch for the Ares 1-X rocket test flight, is available for purchase.
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Apollo Collage
This beautiful one piece set features the Apollo program emblem surrounded by the individual mission logos.
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Expedition 21
The official embroidered patch for the International Space Station Expedition 21 crew is now available from our stores.
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Hubble Patch
The official embroidered patch for mission STS-125, the space shuttle's last planned service call to the Hubble Space Telescope, is available for purchase.
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