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Friday, November 25, 2011

Here's Hoping All Had a Great Thanksgiving

Hello Troops,
The day after Thanksgiving and all was quiet in the house, except for the sound of rumbling stomachs and the gurgling sound of Mr. Williamson guzzling a bottle of Pepto Bismol. It was quite the feast at my niece's home, attended by family far and near. A full detailed description of my Thanksgiving Day can read on my Genealogy blog by clicking these words.
(Before reading, know that exaggeration is my one true weakness :)

I stopped by the Space Center to put out the working list for next week. I was amazed at what Jon Parker and Megan Warner accomplished on Wednesday. They repainted the Voyager's Captain's Quarters. Before they could paint, they had to do extensive sheet rock repairs. The loft looks brand new. This is going above and beyond the call of duty and so typical of what our Space Center staff do for the students and teachers that attend every day.

Not wanting the Phoenix to feel left out, Megan turned her attention to repainting the Phoenix's doors and desks. She put the finishing touches to the door just as Miranda's test mission arrived this morning at 10:00 A.M.

Just when I thought I couldn't be more amazed, I found Stacy, Rachel, Ben and Matt in Discovery enjoying a delicious breakfast while working on the Galileo's new summer mission!

These people surely make me look good. They are all awesome.

Now, how about an update from Mark Daymont's Space Rubble Blog?

50 Year Anniversary: Ranger 2 flubs, USAF tests Titan

Atlas-Agena launch.

Fifty years ago, launches continued from the Cape Canaveral pads. NASA launched Ranger 2 on an Atlas-Agena rocket combination on November 18, 1961. Ranger's 2 mission was to test the electronics of experiments that would later be sent to study other planets, and to also send back information on space radiation and magnetic fields. Scientists hoped to discover clues about a possible trail of hydrogen gas following behind the Earth as it orbited the Sun.

Ranger 2 at NASA Glen Research Center.

The Atlas rocket successfully placed Ranger 2 in orbit around the Earth, but disaster followed. The Agena second stage failed to ignite, due to a malfunctioning gyro. Ranger 2 was unable to be placed in the orbit necessary for the tests, and after separation it was stranded in an orbit that brought it closer and closer to Earth's atmosphere. It burned up two days later.

Titan 1 ICBM launch.

On November 21, 1961, a Titan 1a ICBM missile test was conducted by the USAF from its Canaveral site. This missile launched a special nose cone that would later be used in anti-missile missile tests with the Nike-Zeus system.

The next day, the military launched a mysterious satellite from Point Arguello in California. The rocket used was the Atlas-Agena combo. I still have not found out anything about this mysterious launch. It is recorded as the first "unannounced" rocket launch of a satellite.

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