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 Top 10 Photos: NASA's Deep Impact Comet Crash

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Rikho123
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PostSubject: Top 10 Photos: NASA's Deep Impact Comet Crash   Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:14 am

10# KAPOW!

Deep Impact's flyby spacecraft shows the flash that occurred when comet Tempel 1 ran over the spacecraft's probe. It was taken by the flyby craft's high-resolution camera over a period of about 40 seconds. The image has been digitally processed to enhance the view of the comet's nucleus. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD
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“The Deep Impact mission team is now on the sidelines with the rest of the world, anxiously awaiting the science team’s assessment of the data, Henderson said. “The science team spent the night here analyzing data, and they seem to be ecstatic with the results…and they have only seen 10 percent of the data so far.”

9# With envious eyes

A still from the sequence taken by the OSIRIS Narrow Angle Camera on board Rosetta, shows how the brightness of Comet Tempel 1 develops after impact. Credit: ESA/OSIRIS consortium.
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Deep Impact is not the only mission aimed at a comet. The European Space Agency’s (ESA) Rosetta probe is headed toward a comet encounter of its own, but took time out of its mission to turn its camera toward Tempel 1 during the Deep Impact encounter.

““Tonight we have put a new trail for other people to follow after us,” JPL director Charles Elachi said after the successful impact. “The Stardust mission is coming back [to Earth] with comet samples, and Rosetta will be landing on a comet.”

8# The view from here

The Faulkes Telescope North can clearly see the expanding ejecta in the coma. Attached is an image obtained by dividing an R-band image obtained at 08:35 UT by one at 06:24 UT. Positive (bright) pixels show the enhancement in R-band brightness in the inner coma at 08:35 UT. Image size is 85x62 arcseconds, the apparent enhancement has a maximum brightness 2.5 arcseconds from the center of o comet. Credit: A. Fitzimmons and the Maui Deep Impact Workshop students and educators.
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More than 50 telescopes and 200 researchers pitched in to watch Impactor’s collision with Deep Impact’s Impactor probe, including the Faulkes Telescope North in Maui, Hawaii. Faulkes astronomers, like many around the world, observed Tempel 1’s coma brighten after Impactor slammed into its nucleus.

“Mission scientists hope the multiple views will help them better understand the composition of Tempel 1 and the effect’s of Impactor’s collision on the icy wanderer.

7# Bright shining diamond
This image shows the view from Deep Impact's probe 30 minutes before it was pummeled by comet Tempel 1. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD
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Before becoming familiarizing itself with Tempel 1’s surface, Deep Impact’s Impactor probe took this image of the avocado-shaped comet.

“Taken by Impactor’s targeting sensor camera, this picture's brightness has been enhanced to show the jets of dust streaming away from the comet. The image was taken by the probe's impactor targeting sensor.

““It wasn’t overexposed, we just stretched it to show the dust,” A’Hearn said of the image.

6# Hubble’s view

The Hubble Space Telescope captured the dramatic effects of the collision early July 4 between the Impactor projectile released by the Deep Impact spacecraft and comet Tempel 1. Credit: NASA, ESA, P. Feldman (Johns Hopkins University), and H. Weaver (Applied Physics Lab).
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In this triple shot, the orbiting Hubble Space Telescope shows clearly the effects of Deep Impact on Tempel 1.

“Ten minutes before impact (left), Tempel 1 appeared as usual, but 15 minutes after the collision (center) the comet was four times brighter, with the dust envelope around its nucleus swelling outward by an additional 200 kilometers.

“Just over an hour after impact (right), the impact’s fan-shaped debris extends about 1,800 kilometers from the nucleus and is moving about twice the speed of a commercial jet plane.

“Hubble’s Tempel 1 images were taken the telescope’s Advanced Camera for Surveys' High Resolution Camera, and part of the extensive observation program for the impact.

5# X-ray impact

An animation of Comet Tempel 1 images taken by the Optical Monitor on ESA's XMM-Newton observatory, from two minutes before impact and until seven minutes after impact. Credit: ESA/MSSL/Optical Monitor team. Image by Pedro Rodriguez, ESAC (Spain).
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ESA’s XMM-Newton observatory compiled the images that make up this animation. They include observations from about two minutes before the Tempel 1 impact until about seven minutes afterward. These images were taken with XMM-Newton’s optical monitor blue filter, with which it is possible to measure the outcoming gas and dust.

“Additional images from the instrument were expected in hours after impact, and should shed light on the composition of Tempel 1’s ejecta, researchers said.

4# Hot Comet

This infrared picture highlights the warm, sunlit side of the comet, where NASA's Deep Impact probe later hit. These data were acquired about six minutes before impact. The visible image was taken by the medium-resolution camera on the mission's flyby spacecraft, and the infrared data were acquired by the flyby craft's infrared spectrometer. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD.
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In addition to optical images of Impactor’s Tempel 1 collision, the Flyby spacecraft also took careful infrared scans of the comet before and after the impact.

“We don’t have an absolute on the temperature map, but you can see that the sunward region is the hottest part,” A’Hearn said. “This will be important to try and understand.”

3# Closing In

This image shows comet Tempel 1 six minutes before it ran over NASA's Deep Impact probe at 10:52 p.m. Pacific time, July 3 (1:52 a.m. Eastern time, July 4). The picture was taken by the probe's impactor targeting sensor. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD.
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A pristine Comet Tempel 1 flies through space, unknowing of the impending collision from the Impactor spacecraft. Researchers initially thought the comet was shaped like a pickle, but later learned it was more banana-like as images from Impactor and Flyby reached Earth.

“One end looks rounded like a cylinder, and the top is sort of concave from the looks of it,” A’Hearn said, adding that his team hopes to have a complete model of Tempel 1 later this week.

2# Craters or jets

This image shows the view from Deep Impact's probe 90 seconds before it was pummeled by comet Tempel 1. The image was taken by the probe's impactor targeting sensor. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD.
Quote :
During Impactor’s final few seconds before crashing into Tempel 1, the probe observed numerous features that seemed to resemble craters or fissures from outgassing, but only further study will tell, researchers said.

“This is the first time we’ve seen things on the surface [of a comet] that look like impact craters to some of us,” A’Hearn said. “We have a big flat area on Tempel 1 that is curving around the surface, and we don’t know what that is yet.”

1# Looking Back

This image looking back at Tempel 1 was taken by the high-resolution camera aboard Deep Impact's flyby spacecraft. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/UMD.
Quote :
In hours and days following the Impactor success, Deep Impact researchers will complete their download of the Flyby’s Tempel 1 encounter and look back data. Also on tap is science calibration imaging for the rest of the week, mission managers said.

““But it will all be done in daylight shifts…quite a luxury for the team,” Henderson said.

“Henderson said the Impactor did its job perfectly, hitting right the middle of the highest center of brightness on the comet. Moreover, the Flyby spacecraft passed through the tail of the comet and didn’t incur any damage.

““All subsystems are in the same state as they were before the start of encounter. The optics show no sign of sandblasting, and the look back images are all looking great,” Henderson said.

““We didn’t even lose a single cell on the solar arrays. We certainly expected to have at least some minor damage. We couldn’t be happier.”

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