Tech

June 12, 2012

NASA’s undersea mission submerges in the Atlantic

An international crew of aquanauts is settling into its home on the ocean floor, where the team will spend 12 days testing concepts for a potential asteroid mission.

The expedition is the 16th excursion of the NASA Extreme Environment Mission Operations.

The crew of four began its mission in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Aquarius Reef Base undersea research habitat off the coast of Key Largo, Fla., at 11:04 a.m., EDT, June 11.

NEEMO sends groups of astronauts, engineers and scientists to live in the Aquarius lab, 63 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean. The laboratory is located in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. For NASA, Aquarius provides a convincing simulation to space exploration, and NEEMO crew members experience some of the same tasks and challenges under water that they would in space.

The NEEMO 16 mission will focus on three areas related to asteroid missions. The crew of aquanauts will investigate communication delays, restraint and translation techniques, and optimum crew size.

The isolation and microgravity environment of the ocean floor allows the NEEMO 16 crew to study and test concepts for how future exploration of asteroids might be conducted. NASA’s Orion spacecraft and the Space Launch System rocket, which currently are in development, will allow people to begin exploring beyond the boundaries of Earth’s orbit. The first human mission to an asteroid is planned for 2025.

NEEMO 16 Commander Dottie Metcalf-Lindenburger of NASA will be joined by European Space Agency astronaut Timothy Peake; Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Kimiya Yui; and Steven W. Squyres, Goldwin Smith professor of astronomy at Cornell University and chairman of the NASA Advisory Council. Squyres also was a member of NEEMO 15.

The NEEMO crewmembers will be chronicling their mission using several social media outlets, blogs and live video streams from the crews’ helmets, the air lock and outside the habitat.

For additional information on the mission and links to the various ways to connect with NEEMO, visit http://www.nasa.gov/neemo.

The NEEMO mission is sponsored by NASA’s Advanced Exploration Systems Program, which is made up of small projects aimed at rapidly developing and demonstrating prototype systems for future human spaceflight missions. Projects that are part of the program will help reduce risk, lower cost and test concepts for future human missions beyond Earth’s orbit.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines September 2, 2014

News: Debris yields clues that pilot never ejected - When investigators were finally able to safely enter the crash site of an F-15C “Eagle” fighter jet on the afternoon of Aug. 27, they made a grim discovery that concluded more than 30 hours of searching – the pilot never managed to eject from the aircraft.  ...
 
 

News Briefs September 2, 2014

Pentagon: Iraq operations cost $560 million so far U.S. military operations in Iraq, including airstrikes and surveillance flights, have cost about $560 million since mid-June, the Pentagon said Aug. 29. Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary, said the average daily cost has been $7.5 million. He said it began at a much lower...
 
 

Unmanned aircraft partnership reaches major milestone

A team of research students and staff from Warsaw University of Technology have successfully demonstrated the first phase of flight test and integration of unmanned aircraft platforms with an autonomous mission control system. The demonstration marks a significant milestone in a partnership between the university and Lockheed Martin that began earlier this year. This is...
 

 

Raytheon delivers first Block 2 Rolling Airframe Missiles to US Navy

Raytheon delivered the first Block 2 variant of its Rolling Airframe Missile system to the U.S. Navy as part of the company’s 2012 Low Rate Initial Production contract. RAM Block 2 is a significant performance upgrade featuring enhanced kinematics, an evolved radio frequency receiver, and an improved control system. “As today’s threats continue to evolve,...
 
 
Courtesy photograph

Two Vietnam War Soldiers, one from Civil War to receive Medal of Honor

U.S. Army graphic Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. Adkins and former Spc. 4 Donald P. Sloat will receive the Medal of Honor for actions in Vietnam. The White House announced Aug. 26 that Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. A...
 
 

Sparks fly as NASA pushes limits of 3-D printing technology

NASA has successfully tested the most complex rocket engine parts ever designed by the agency and printed with additive manufacturing, or 3-D printing, on a test stand at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. NASA engineers pushed the limits of technology by designing a rocket engine injector – a highly complex part that...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>