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EPOXI

Two intriguing investigations -- One flight-proven spacecraft

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EPOXI Newsletter - July 2008

LUNAR TRANSIT MOVIE

Videos of the Moon transiting the Earth, as imaged by NASA's EPOXI mission, were made from the still images collected when EPOXI's spacecraft imaged the Earth-Moon system on 28-29 May 2008. When the images were acquired, the spacecraft was just outside the orbit of the Earth and ahead of Earth by 31 million miles, 1/3 AU, making it as far from Earth as Mercury is from the Sun.

The videos were made by Don J. Lindler (Sigma Space Corporation, at GSFC), working closely with the EPOXI (EPOCh + DIXI) Science Teams. Two versions are available, using different wavelengths for the red channel in the color composites.
epoxi.umd.edu/3gallery/vid_Earth-Moon.shtml

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A DREAM COME TRUE

Dr. Lucy McFadden, a co-investigator on the EPOXI mission as well as the Dawn mission, had the opportunity to hunt for meteorites in Antarctica as a field team member of the National Science Foundation's Antarctic Meteorite Search Program 2007-2008. She will be giving a special webcast presentation on Fri 8 August about her adventures. McFadden's hands-on experience with planetary materials offered her a different perspective on exploring the Solar System.

The Dawn mission will be holding a special webinar and has invited our readers to participate.
Date: Friday, August 8, 2008
Time: 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. MDT

For details and registration information:
dawn.jpl.nasa.gov/science/webcast.asp

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THE GREAT PLANET DEBATE

You are cordially invited to "The Great Planet Debate" (GPD) conference at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory August 14-16, 2008.

Part of the conference includes an open-to-the-public debate between Dr. Mark Sykes of the Planetary Science Institute and Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson of the American Museum of Natural History that will start at 4:30 pm EDT on August 14th. The debate, which will be moderated by Ira Flatow (the host of Science Friday on National Public Radio) is free and will be streamed live on the web.

To register for web participation in the GPD conference, please click on the appropriate link near the top of the GPD homepage at: gpd.jhuapl.edu/

The GPD conference also includes two days (August 14-15) of scientific sessions to discuss and debate the processes leading to planet formation and the characteristics and criteria used to define and categorize planets. An educator's workshop follows on the third day (August 16th) to provide a forum on how the planet debate can be used to spark scientific inquiry in the classroom.
Regular registration for those attending in person is available at the same site, under the "REGISTRATION" tab.

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OBSERVING CHALLENGE

Last month's observing challenge was to observe GJ 436. At about 33 light-years, it is one of the closer targets to be observed by the EPOXI mission. This month, the observing challenge is to find TrES-3, whose distance is not as well established. It is located high in the sky in the constellation of Hercules (near θ Her).

TrES-3 = USNO J1752071+373244 is a magnitude 12.4, G-class star, which is similar to our own sun in color.
Chart: epoxi.umd.edu/2science/challenge.shtml

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EPOXI E-News features information about the mission, its outreach web site, and products, services, and materials available from the EPOXI Education and Public Outreach (E/PO) team. The EPOXI mission combines two exciting science investigations in an entirely new mission that re-uses the Deep Impact spacecraft. The Extrasolar Planet Observation and Characterization (EPOCh) investigation will observe stars that have known transiting giant planets. The Deep Impact Extended Investigation (DIXI) of comets observes comet 103P/Hartley 2 during a close flyby in October 2010. The EPOXI mission is a partnership among the University of Maryland (UMD), the California Institute of Technology's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Ball Aerospace and Technology Corp (BATC), and Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). EPOXI is a NASA Discovery mission of opportunity. See our website at epoxi.umd.edu.

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