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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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NASA picks contractor for first Prometheus mission
NASA NEWS RELEASE
Posted: September 20, 2004

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, Calif., selected Northrop Grumman Space Technology, Redondo Beach, Calif., as the contractor for co-designing the proposed Prometheus Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter (JIMO) spacecraft. The contract award is for approximately $400 million, covering work through mid-2008.


An artist's concept of Jupiter Icy Moons Orbiter. Credit: NASA/JPL
 
The Prometheus JIMO mission is an ambitious mission to orbit and explore three planet-sized moons, Callisto, Ganymede and Europa, of Jupiter. The moons may have vast oceans beneath their icy surfaces. A nuclear reactor would enable the mission, which would launch in the next decade.

JIMO would be the first NASA mission using nuclear electric propulsion, which would enable the spacecraft to orbit each icy world to perform extensive investigations of their composition, history, and potential for sustaining life.

The JIMO mission, integrated with the Vision for Space Exploration, also develops and demonstrates technologies and capabilities in direct support to implement the Vision, including space nuclear electric power systems and nuclear electric propulsion systems.

"We have assembled an exceptional team of professionals to take us into the next phase of the mission. To see the mission evolve is rewarding, and I am confident a good team is in place to move us forward," said John Casani, project manager for the JIMO mission at JPL.

Under the contract, Northrop Grumman will work with a government team to complete the preliminary design for the spacecraft. The work includes developing hardware, software and test activities for the design of the non-nuclear portion of the spacecraft. It also includes developing the interfaces for the spacecraft, space reactor, and science instruments. The contractor is responsible for the integration of government-owned and provided technologies into the spacecraft. They are also responsible for assembly, integration, and testing of the space system in accordance with applicable government requirements.

The government team will co-design the spacecraft with the contractor. NASA will supply the launch vehicle. The Department of Energy's Office of Naval Reactors, Washington, will own and be responsible for the space reactor.

The government team includes JPL, NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif.; Glenn Research Center, Cleveland; Kennedy Space Center, Fla.; Langley Research Center, Hampton, Va.; and Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala. Also the Office of Naval Reactors, which includes Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory, Schenectady, N.Y.; Bettis Laboratory, Pittsburgh; and supporting Department of Energy national laboratories.

The mission instruments will be procured competitively via a NASA Announcement of Opportunity. Three crosscutting themes, identified by a NASA-chartered science definition team, drive the proposed JIMO investigations.

The themes are: evaluate the degree subsurface oceans are present on these moons; study the chemical composition of the moons, including organic materials, and the surface processes that affect them; and scrutinize the entire Jupiter system, particularly the interactions between Jupiter, the moons' atmospheres and interiors.

JIMO is managed by JPL and is part of NASA's Prometheus Program, a program studying a series of initiatives to develop power systems and technologies for space exploration in support of the Vision for Space Exploration.

JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology, manages the proposed JIMO mission for NASA's Exploration Systems Mission Directorate, Washington.

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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