The Thrill of Discovery Educator Workshop
NASA's Year of the Solar System
and the significant mission events happening during 2011
was held March 19, 2011, at four sites:
- Jet Propulsion Laboratory | Pasadena, CA
- Johnson Space Center | Houston, TX
- Jackson Middle School Observatory | Champlin, MN
- Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory | Laurel, MD
NASA's Discovery and New Frontiers missions are traveling vast distances to find answers to age-old questions. These robotic spacecraft are celestial detectives, revealing how our solar system formed and evolved - doing brilliant science that utilize way cool technologies.
- More than 6 years after launch, MESSENGER will finally go into orbit around Mercury on March 17. Dr. Sean Solomon, MESSENGER's Principal Investigator, reviews the mission's goals, the science findings so far during three flybys of Mercury, and the excitement of reaching the orbiting phase of the mission
- The Dawn mission is using ion propulsion to visit the two largest objects in the asteroid belt. Launched in September 2007, Dawn will arrive at asteroid Vesta this July for a year-long orbit. Dawn's Chief Engineer, Dr. Marc Rayman, shares why this mission is so unique and what scientists hope to learn.
- Juno's quest is to understand the formation and evolution of Jupiter which will help us comprehend the origin of our entire solar system. Juno will launch this August. Dr. Ravit Helled from the Gravity Team explains how Juno will reveal "The Giant Planet Story."