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Friday, December 27, 2013

Help a Six Year Old Save NASA. Sign the Petition. The Years Best Space Videos. Space and Science News. The Imaginarium

Hello Troops,
     A little boy who dreams of becoming an astronaut one day is on a mission to save NASA. He has started an online petition on the White House website.  Connor Johnson is 6 years old and fixated on space. Not just because it’s pretty cool, but because Connor is quite sure space will be his future.
“The whole reason I want to be an astronaut so I can discover, like, new worlds,” he says.  Connor says, since he was three, he’s been inspired by NASA.  “To discover like asteroids or stuff that I could build stuff out of.”

     NASA has given countless kids like Connor reason to believe they too can land in space. But recently, over Thanksgiving, Connor learned Congress is cutting funding to the space program.  “He was disappointed to hear that they were decreasing funding,” said Connor’s mother.

     A young boy inspired to take on a huge challenge to help save the very place that taught him to think big. Just think of all the significant moments that started with someone’s little dream.  Johnson must get 100,000 signatures by December 29. As of Monday morning, his petition had nearly 4,000 signatures.
     >>> Sign the online petition here:

Check out Penny4NASA's website for email addresses and phone numbers for your local reps:

Space and Science News

The Favorite Space Videos of 2013.  Did Yours Make the List?

Iapetus, Saturn's Lollipop Moon, is One of the Most Bizarre Objects in our Solar System.

     Saturn’s Moon Iapetus has a unique feature which was, until recently, a complete mystery.
Running along its equator is this weird ridge of mountains. The mountains run exactly along the equator, are perfectly straight, and---so far---haven’t shown up like this on any other planet or moon. They’re also the only such mountains anywhere on Iapetus’ surface (reaching as high as 63,000 feet tall).  Read more at Quarks to Quasars

The Benefits of Colonizing Space

     Many argue that the world is in a state of crisis and that the human race is the cause. As a species, we are approaching an important turning point in our history, and if we make the wrong decisions we might be facing a future of deprivation, over population, hunger, and instability. Ultimately, many believe that we will eventually be forced to colonize space. Last year, the 100 Starship Symposium set on course a project to design and build an economical and practical spacecraft for interstellar travel.
Read more at Quarks to Quasars

ISS Pump Working, Russians take their turn

News from the International Space Station by Mark Daymont, Farpoint Educator.

Astronauts work to install the new coolant pump. Credit: NASA TV.

On a Christmas Eve EVA, astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins  completed repairs to the station's cooling system by finishing installation of the new Pump on the station truss segment. During the spacewalk, designated EVA-25 by NASA, the pair of explorers managed to complete in two spacewalks all the tasks that had been planned for three! The original plan called for the first EVA to disconnect the broken equipment, then on the second EVA the pump would be removed and stored safely while the new system would be placed, and finally on the third EVA the installation of the new unit would be completed. Instead, the astronauts showed their professionalism and skill by fitting all three EVA tasks into two long EVA's. This second spacewalk lasted

Astronaut Maastrachio works on the pump.

According to, new quick-disconnect pipes on the coolant pump helped to make removal of the device much more simple than previous designs would have allowed. On the first spacewalk Saturday, the astronauts got ahead of schedule and finished the removal of the bad unit and connected the hoses back into the system so that the coolant could remain liquid inside the station. Then on Tuesday the astronauts removed the protective insulation around the new unit, which had been thoughtfully placed on a storage position on the truss ahead of time, and then moved the pump into position for final installation.

Mike Hopkins, space repairman.

After the first spacewalk, it was thought that water had again gotten inside one of the suits, but it turned out that the water had leaked during procedures once the men were back inside the station. Rick Mastracchio was actually glad to have ended EVA-24 a bit early, as there were some discomfort issues with his spacesuit near the end of the spacewalk. He used a different suit for the EVA-25.

Check out the detailed description of the spacewalk at 

The fun does not stop! Even now as I write this, the Russians are performing another spacewalk. Commander Oleg Kotov and Flight Engineer Sergey Ryazanskiy are outside the station installing scientific experiments and two special Canadian cameras which recently arrived on a Progress cargo spacecraft. Kotov also has a GoPro camera on his spacesuit arm, so we would hope to see some interesting views eventually.
The Imaginarium
Your ordinary morphed into Extraordinary

What is a poor child suppose to think?

A Few Great Photographs

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