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February 24, 2013

Inert Launch Abort Motor For First Orion Flight Test Delivered

Launch Abort Motor Designed By ATK For Crew Safety

A launch abort motor has been delivered to Kennedy Space Center, FL, for Exploration Flight Test (EFT-1) of NASA's Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle, scheduled to fly next year. The test flight abort motor is configured with inert propellant, since the EFT-1 mission will have no crew on board, but otherwise replicates the launch abort system that will ensure astronaut safety on future crewed Orion exploration missions using the new Space Launch System (SLS).

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NASA's Kepler Mission Discovers Tiny Planet System

Smallest Planet Is Slightly Larger Than Earth's Moon 210 Light Years Away

NASA's Kepler mission scientists have discovered a new planetary system that is home to the smallest planet yet found around a star similar to our sun. The planets are located in a system called Kepler-37, about 210 light-years from Earth in the constellation Lyra. The smallest planet, Kepler-37b, is slightly larger than our moon, measuring about one-third the size of Earth. It is smaller than Mercury, which made its detection a challenge.

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NASA Selects Science Instrument, Hardware For European Mission To Jupiter

Will Contribute UV Spectrometer, Radar, And Particle Environment Package

NASA has selected key contributions to a 2022 European Space Agency (ESA) mission that will study Jupiter and three of its largest moons in unprecedented detail. The moons are thought to harbor vast water oceans beneath their icy surfaces. NASA's contribution will consist of one U.S.-led science instrument and hardware for two European instruments to fly on ESA's Jupiter Icy Moons Explorer (JUICE) mission. JUICE will carry 11 experiments developed by scientific teams from 15 European countries, the United States and Japan.

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Hubble Sees Cosmic 'Flying V' Of Merging Galaxies

Two Distinct Objects Viewed Side-On Make Formation

An image of a large “flying V” captured by the Hubble Space Telescope is actually two distinct objects — a pair of interacting galaxies known as IC 2184. Both the galaxies are seen almost edge-on in the large, faint northern constellation of Camelopardalis (The Giraffe), and can be seen as bright streaks of light surrounded by the ghostly shapes of their tidal tails.

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