Galileo Dies.
September 16, 2003 2:17 PM   Subscribe

NASA's Official 'Galileo Dies' Page. Galileo is set to crash into Jupiter on Sunday. Responsible for many great images and tons of information, Galileo served well. Find a complete history of the Galileo mission here. Also, don't forget to watch the End of Mission webcast this Sunday at approx. 2 PM EST here.
posted by Ufez Jones (7 comments total)
if wish the site would go down so i could put up a post right above this one:

NASA's Official 'Galileo' Page Dies.
posted by quonsar at 3:24 PM on September 16, 2003

You can read a really enjoyable New Yorker article about Galileo's fortunes while it lasts.
posted by Zurishaddai at 7:56 PM on September 16, 2003

If ya download Celestia and follow the Galileo, you can virtually watch it get real close to Jupiter and ...well actually it doesn't literally show the Galileo actually crash INTO the planet, although that woulda been cool.. It just sorta gets real close to Jupiter and then it stops being there. Still. It's worth the download.

I also found these files to add on to Celestia that showed the trajectory and coordinates of the Voyager probes which are on their way out of the solar system and I gotta tell ya, watching Voyager Two go practically through the rings of Saturn, and then how it sweeps by Uranus with all the satelites named after Shakespearean characters? That was more thrilling to me than an hour of Deus Ex.

...Okay. So. I have no life. So?
posted by ZachsMind at 8:39 PM on September 16, 2003

Good post - thanks.
posted by plep at 2:30 AM on September 17, 2003

I, for one, will be watching the live broadcast on Sunday, as I hope anyone who displays interest in space and its (future) history will.
posted by Keyser Soze at 4:38 AM on September 17, 2003

In December, 1990, Galileo began its “Earth-1” maneuver: the first Earth flyby. This happened to coincide with the buildup to the first Gulf War. nasa had to inform the North American Aerospace Defense Command that the blip that would appear on its radar screens on December 8th—an incredibly fast-moving object that might well seem to originate from the Middle East—was not an enemy missile but a robotic spacecraft coming from Venus.

Damn, that is a great article, Zurishaddai. Thanks.
posted by Ufez Jones at 8:41 AM on September 17, 2003

You're quite welcome, Ufez. My favorite bit was about the unlikely scheme cooked up to speed Galileo to its destination after the Challenger disaster forced the original plans to be scrapped:

The spacecraft seemed to be on the verge of a one-way trip to the Smithsonian. Trajectory specialists at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory set to work, attempting to figure out how to get Galileo to Jupiter with what amounted to a lawnmower engine under the hood. The man who eventually solved this puzzle was Roger Diehl. ... Galileo would fly to Venus, curve back, swing around the Earth, then fly around Earth a second time exactly two years later; this trajectory would act like a slingshot, flinging Galileo all the way to Jupiter.
posted by Zurishaddai at 7:03 PM on September 21, 2003

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