From Earth to space…#YearInSpace Mission Begins

From Earth to space…brief recap of events that took place on Friday, March 27, 2015. Image collage below includes a Crew Earth Observations image of Baikonur, spectacular launch of the #Soyuz spacecraft, approach of Soyuz to the #ISS, & crew members NASA Astronaut Scott Kelly and Roscosmos cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko entering the ISS after opening the hatch.  What a great way to start the #YearInSpace mission!  #JourneyToMars

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Watch First One-Year ISS Crew Launch LIVE Tomorrow!

This Crew Earth Observation photo shows the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, the site of tomorrow’s launch of the first one-year crew for the International Space Station.  Make sure to tune in to NASA TV (www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv) and watch NASA astronaut Scott Kelly and Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) cosmonauts Mikhail Kornienko and Gennady Padalka as they begin their journey to the ISS!

Image shown is ISS010-E-17616
(download full image at http://eol.jsc.nasa.gov/SearchPhotos/photo.pl?mission=ISS010&roll=E&frame=17616)

Image Science Determines Placement of Optical Targets for Orion

Our Image Science & Analysis Laboratory (ISAL) team is using computer modeling to determine placement of optical targets (white/yellow spots) on three panels (red, green, blue) which will be jettisoned at 2 minutes into the launch of Orion. These targets will allow video analysts to measure position and attitude of the panels during jettison and verify the jettison mechanisms work as designed.

For more information on the Image Science & Analysis Laboratory and capabilities, see http://imagescience.jsc.nasa.gov.

Curiosity Investigates “Garden City”

Scientists from NASA_ARES at the NASA Johnson Space Center have been, and continue to be involved in the Mars Science Laboratory Mission (Curiosity) at Mars.  The Curiosity rover landed in Gusev Crater on Mars in August of 2012 and has been exploring the terrain ever since.  After exploring some of the interesting rocks in a region referred to as Pahrump Hills, Curiosity has continued the trek to Mt. Sharp.

After departing Pahrump Hills, Curiosity began investigating an interesting outcrop, called “Garden City,” full of light- and dark-toned veins.  The left picture is a Navcam image taken on Sol 930 (sol = a martian day) showing MAHLI taking up-close images of these veins.  The upper right picture is a MAHLI image of some of these veins, and the lower right picture is a MAHLI image of the region in the red box.  These veins are some of the largest we’ve encountered on the mission (up to ~10 cm wide).  Veins suggest water moved through these rocks and deposited minerals in the fractures.  ChemCam and APXS measurements will help us determine the chemical composition of the light and dark components.  You can check out more raw images of the veins and other outcrops here: http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/multimedia/raw/

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Stay tuned for additional updates on the Curiosity mission at Mars….