|Volume: 01, Issue: 20||12/30/2003|
Tune in for Live NASA Coverage of Mars and Comet MissionsAs the world marks the beginning of 2004, two thrilling scientific missions will come into the limelight. On Jan. 2, NASA's Stardust spacecraft will have a close encounter with comet Wild 2, deploying a collector to catch particles for return to Earth. The very next day, on Jan. 3, NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Project will deliver the first mobile laboratory to the surface of Mars. The rover will perform robotic geological fieldwork that may reveal a history of water on Mars.
Engineers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, Calif., have navigated the first rover, Spirit, to arrive at Mars at approximately 11:35 p.m. EST Jan. 3. Three weeks later, the second rover, Opportunity, will reach the Meridiani Planum, a region containing exposed deposits of a mineral that usually forms under watery conditions. Information about the Mars Exploration Rover mission is available online at:
Press conferences will be conducted at JPL beginning Dec. 30, 2003, on the Stardust and Mars missions. Information about both missions is available at:
Briefing Schedule (ALL TIMES EST):
Tuesday, Dec. 30
Friday, Jan. 2
Saturday, Jan. 3
Sunday, Jan. 4
NASA TV will provide extensive mission coverage. NASA TV is available on AMC-9, transponder 9C, C-Band, located at 85 degrees west longitude. The frequency is 3880.0 MHz. Polarization is vertical, and audio is monaural at 6.80 MHz. Audio only of coverage is available by calling 321-867-1220/1240/1260/7135. For the NASA TV schedule, visit:
JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology located in Pasadena, manages the Mars Exploration Rover project for NASA's Office of Space Science in Washington.
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