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The Deep Impact spacecraft hit the comet tonight (10:52pm PDT on 7/3/05) with a huge explosion. I was watching NASA-TV on my computer like the huge geek I am, listening to some guy at mission control talk real-time on the pictures coming back immediately after the impact. If you haven’t heard, NASA crashed a remote spacecraft into a comet in order to learn more about the surface of a comet and to figure out how to completely obliterate a very expensive piece of spacecraft machinery.
Here is a picture of the comet prior to impact
Here’s a look at the point of impact explosion.
Pretty cool stuff, huh. If you aren’t into all this, you may say, “great, more tax dollars spent on random science experiments”…. but when you think of the genius minds that went into slamming a small craft into a moving comet, it’s almost like throwing a dart and trying to hit a moving bullet. That’s really hard to do.
Why am I interested in this stuff? Here’s a little insight into what makes me click…. I’m always intrigued by anything to do with Aircraft carriers, submarines, Secret Service, NASA, and a whole bunch of other “wow, that’s cool stuff” dealing with technology, big machinery and expensive crap. I guess that’s my previous engineering background stepping in. Now where did I leave my pocket-protector….???