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New Horizon Phones Home

New Horizon Phones Home


>>>I WOULD LIKE TO CONGRATULATE
THE NEW HORIZONS TEAM AND NASA ON THEIR PIONEERING DECADE-LONG
MISSION TO EXPLORE THE PLUTO SYSTEM.
THIS WILL SHOW US THE FIRST GLIMPSE OF MYSTERIOUS PLUTO, THE
ICY WORLD ON THE VERY END OF OUR SOLAR SYSTEM.
IT IS 50 YEARS SINCE THE FIRST SUCCESSFUL MISSION TO EARTH SENT
BACK IMAGES OF THE RED PLANET. NOW THE SOLAR SYSTEM WILL BE
OPENED UP TO US, REVEALING THE SECRETS OF DISTANT PLUTO.
THE REVELATIONS OF NEW HORIZONS MAY HELP US TO UNDERSTAND BETTER
HOW OUR SOLAR SYSTEM WAS FORMED. WE EXPLORE BECAUSE WE ARE HUMAN
AND WE WANT TO KNOW. I HOPE THAT PLUTO WILL HELP US
IN THAT JOURNEY. I WILL BE WATCHING CLOSELY, AND
I HOPE YOU WILL TOO. MM
>>HOW DO YOU TOP AN OPENING MESSAGE FROM STEVEN HAWKINGS?
BY CONFIRMING SAFE PASSAGE BY THE FIRST SPACECRAFT TO PLUTO,
AND THAT’S WHAT WE PLAN TO DO TONIGHT.
WE’RE LIVE IN MARYLAND FOR SPECIAL COVERAGE OF NASA’S NEW
HORIZONS PLUTO FLY BY. I’M MIKE BUCKLEY, AND IN ABOUT
7:49 THIS MORNING, AFTER 3 BILLION MILES AND NINE AND A
HALF YEARS, NASA’S NEW HORIZONS ZIPPED PAST PLUTO AND CAPPED THE
INITIAL RECONNAISSANCE OF THE SOLAR SYSTEM.
SPEEDING ALONG IN A FLY-BY MODE THAT HAD IT COLLECTING AS MUCH
DATA AS IT CAN, AS QUICKLY AS IT CAN, BUT NOT ABLE TO CALL HOME
AT THE SAME TIME. SO TONIGHT, AUDIENCES HERE AT
A.P.L. AND AROUND THE WORLD ARE LISTENING FOR THAT CALL.
HAVING LEFT NEW HORIZONS NEARLY FOUR AND A HALF HOURS AGO, RADIO
SIGNALS TRAVELING AT LIGHT SPEED ARE EXPECTED TO ARRIVE AT THE
A.P.L. MISSIONS OPERATION CENTER AROUND 8:53 EASTERN TIME, HAVING
COME THROUGH NASA’S DEEP SPACE NETWORK ANTENNA STATION NEAR
MADRID. WE’LL GO LIVE SO YOU CAN WATCH
SOME OF THAT ACTIVITY, BUT LET’S START BY LOOKING BACK.
IN DECEMBER, RECORDED A SPECIAL VERSION OF THE SONG “WHERE MY
HEART WILL TAKE ME” TO WAKE NEW HORIZONS OUT OF ITS FINAL
HIBERNATION PERIOD AND WE’D LIKE TO USE THAT SONG DOWN THE LONG
ROAD TO THIS HISTORIC MOMENT. MM
M IT’S BEEN A LONG ROAD†M MM
M AND I CAN FEEL THE CHANGE IN THE WIND RIGHT NOW†M
M NOTHING’S IN MY WAY†M M AND THEY’RE NOT GOING TO HOLD
ME DOWN NO MORE†M M THEY ARE NOT GOING TO HOLD ME
DOWN†M M CAUSE I HAVE FAITH OF THE
HEART†M M I’M GOING WHERE MY HEART WILL
TAKE ME†M M I’VE GOT FAITH TO BELIEVE I
CAN DO ANYTHING†M M I’VE GOT STRENGTH OF THE
SOUL†M M NO ONE’S GONNA BEND OR BREAK
ME†M M I CAN REACH ANY STAR†M
M I’VE GOT FAITH†M M I’VE GOT FAITH OF THE HEART†M
M IT’S BEEN A LONG ROAD†M M GETTING FROM THERE TO HERE†M
M IT’S BEEN A LONG TIME†M M BUT MY TIME IS FINALLY NEAR†M
M I CAN FEEL THE CHANGE IN THE WIND RIGHT NOW†M
M NOTHING’S IN MY WAY†M M AND THEY ARE NOT GONNA HOLD ME
DOWN NO MORE†M M NO THEY’RE NOT GONNA HOLD ME
DOWN†M M CAUSE I’VE GOT FAITH OF THE
HEART†M M I’M GOING WHERE MY HEART WILL
TAKE ME†M M I’VE GOT FAITH TO BELIEVE†M
M I CAN DO ANYTHING†M M I’VE GOT STRENGTH OF THE
SOUL†M M AND NO ONE’S GONNA BEND OR
BREAK ME†M M I CAN REACH ANY STAR†M
M I’VE GOT FAITH†M M I’VE GOT FAITH OF THE HEART†M
>>I’M JOINED BY MARK, NEW HORIZONS AND COUNTERMISSION
MANAGER WHO WILL SERVE AS CO-HOST FOR THE EVENING.
MARK, THANK YOU FOR LENDING YOUR INSIGHTS TO THE PROGRAM.
>>THANKS, MIKE, IT’S AWESOME TO BE HERE.
>>LET’S TAKE A QUICK LOOK INTO THE MISSIONS OPERATION CENTER
HERE AT A.P.L. KIND OF DESCRIBE WHAT’S
HAPPENING IN THERE. WHO’S SITTING WHERE AND WHAT’S
GOING ON IN THAT ROOM?>>WELL, RIGHT NOW THE
ENGINEERING TEAM’S ASSEMBLING. LOOKS LIKE THEY ARE PRETTY WELL
ASSEMBLED. THE FLIGHT CONTROL TEAM IS GOING
TO BE CHECKING IN WITH MADRID STATION AT THE DEEP SPACE
NETWORK, THAT’S WHERE THE DATA IS GOING TO BE COMING IN FROM
TONIGHT, SO THEY’LL BE DOING COM CHECKS, BOTH VOICE AND DATA, TO
MAKE SURE EVERYTHING’S CONFIGURED RIGHT FOR TONIGHT’S
CONTACT.>>IT’S THE KIND OF THING YOU
HAVE TO DO AHEAD OF TIME, ALMOST LIKE CALLING TO MAKE SURE THEY
ARE HOME, RIGHT, TO MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT CONNECTION?
>>THAT’S RIGHT.>>WE’LL START WITH SOMETHING
ELSE, HAL WEAVER, FAMILIAR FACE TO THOSE WATCHING OUR PROGRAMS.
WELCOME. GLAD YOU COULD JOIN US.
TELL YOU WHAT, MAY BE SOME FOLKS JUST PICKING UP THE NEW HORIZONS
STORY. LET’S ANSWER THE ONE STORY, WHY
NEW HORIZONS, WHY PLUTO?>>WELL, WE’RE HERE TONIGHT
BECAUSE IT’S BEEN NINE AND A HALF YEARS.
WE’VE FINALLY†– THIS IS THE PAYDAY, FLYING JUST ABOUT 7,500
MILES ABOVE THE SURFACE OF PLUTO.
YOU KNOW, BEING 3 BILLION MILES AWAY FROM HOME, YOU KNOW, YOU’RE
WORRIED. YOU KNOW, THIS IS DEEP SPACE.
WE HAVE NOT CONTACTED THE SPACECRAFT IN ALMOST A WHOLE
DAY. IT’S BEEN REALLY, REALLY BUSY.
IF IT’S BEEN FALLING OUR DIRECTION, YOU KNOW, MAKING ALL
THESE WONDERFUL MEASUREMENTS OF THE PLUTO SYSTEM, AND, YOU KNOW,
WE WANT TO TAKE A†– WE WANT TO TAKE A LITTLE BIT OF A†– WE
WANT TO GET THE SPACECRAFT TO TURN BACK TO THE EARTH AND GIVE
US A LITTLE SNIPPET OF ENGINEERING DATA THAT WILL TELL
US EVERYTHING IS OKAY BEFORE GOING BACK AND MAKING MORE
WONDERFUL OBSERVATIONS OF PLUTO. SO, YOU KNOW, AFTER THE
DISCOVERY OF ALL THOSE MOONS OF PLUTO, WHAT WE CALL DEBRIS
GENERATORS, THE SPACECRAFT IS MOVING SO FAST THROUGH THE
SYSTEM, 32,000 MILES PER HOUR. YOU KNOW, EVEN HITTING A LITTLE
RICE PELLET, PIECE OF DUST, COULD BLOW A HOLE IN THE
SPACECRAFT. WE SPENT A COUPLE OF YEARS
WORRYING ABOUT THAT. WE FINALLY GOT TO THE POINT
WHERE WE REALIZED THAT, YOU KNOW, WE ARE FLYING THROUGH THE
SAFEST PART OF THE PLUTO SYSTEM, THE PART CLEARED OUT BY SHARING,
EXTREMELY UNLIKELY THAT ANYTHING BAD WILL HAPPEN TO THE
SPACECRAFT, BUT, YOU KNOW, WE WON’T KNOW FOR SURE UNTIL WE GET
THE WORD TONIGHT.>>THAT’S WHAT HAPPENS, YOU’RE
FLYING INTO THE UNKNOWN.>>YEAH.
>>PART OF THE EXPLORATION, WE DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT,
YOU’RE GOING TO SOME PLACE YOU DON’T KNOW.
I THINK MAYBE SOME OF THE ANXIETY HAS SOME PEOPLE ON EDGE.
>>THAT’S EXACTLY RIGHT.>>YOU KNOW, YOU’VE ALWAYS SAID
FROM THE BEGINNING HOW YOU COULDN’T WAIT TO WATCH PLUTO,
WATCH IT TURN FROM A SPECK, FROM A DOT, INTO A REAL WORLD.
I THINK YOU’VE HAD A CHANCE TO DO THAT OVER THE PAST SEVERAL
MONTHS. TELL US WHAT THAT’S BEEN LIKE.
>>MAYBE WE COULD TAKE EVERYONE HERE ON THAT JOURNEY.
WE’VE ACTUALLY BEEN OBSERVING PLUTO SINCE JANUARY.
THIS IS REALLY A SIX-MONTH PLUTO TOUR.
IF WE CAN BRING UP THE SLIDES AND SHOW YOU WHERE WE STARTED
FROM, YOU KNOW, THIS IS, YOU KNOW, THIS IS THE BEST WE COULD
DO IN JANUARY. KEEP GOING.
GET TO THE NEXT ONE, IT’S JUST GETTING BETTER.
NEXT ONE. BETTER.
IT’S BECOMING A REAL WORLD. YOU KNOW, NOT THESE LITTLE PIN
POINTS. LOOK AT ALL THE STRUCTURES ON
THIS THING. LOOKS LIKE THEY ARE CRATERS, YOU
KNOW, THESE†– ALL THIS INCREDIBLE STRUCTURE.
AND, YOU KNOW, POINTING OUT WITH THE POSSIBLE CLIFFS, WE HAD THE
HEART, THE WHALES, YOU KNOW, ALL OF THESE FEATURES ON PLUTO’S
SURFACE THAT WE’VE BEEN NAMING. TOTING IT WITH BEAUTIFUL COLORS.
AND FINALLY THE IMAGE THAT WE HAD TODAY, THE BEST DETAIL YET,
AND NOW IN FALSE COLOR, THIS ISN’T WHAT THE EYE WOULD SEE,
THIS ISN’T A CHEAT. THEY ARE REAL COLORS WE’VE TAKEN
WITH OUR COLOR CAMERA AND LOOKING AT THE DIFFERENCES AND
STRETCHING THE IMAGES SO YOU CAN SEE THE CONTRAST BETWEEN ONE
PIECE OF THE, YOU KNOW, ONE PORTION OF THE PLANET AND THE
OTHER. AND IT’S JUST REMARKABLE HOW
MUCH DIVERSITY THERE IS ON PLUTO.
YOU SEE THE HEART THERE ACTUALLY GETS BROKEN INTO TWO PARTS, TWO
VENTRICLES, YOU KNOW, AND TO THINK THAT THE DATA, THE IMAGES
WE GET TOMORROW ARE GOING TO BE TEN TIMES RESOLUTION THAN THE
IMAGES WE WERE JUST NOW SHOWING FROM EARLIER TODAY.
>>SO MUCH TO LOOK FORWARD TO.>>YEAH.
>>.>>TAKE US TO STEP TWO, THERE’S
A LOT OF EXCITEMENT TO HAPPEN, EVEN TODAY YOU SEE THAT.
REQUIRE A LITTLE BIT OF PATIENCE, ISN’T IT?
>>THAT’S TRUE. WE’VE PICKED OUT SOME OF THE
CHOICES, OBSERVATIONS, YOU KNOW, BEST IMAGING.
SOME REPRESENTATIVE DATA FROM EACH OF THE INSTRUMENTS ON NEW
HORIZONS TO SEND BACK OVER THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS.
WE TAKE A LOT MORE THAN WHAT WE’RE GOING TO BE SENDING BACK
RIGHT NOW. WE’RE TAKING THOUSANDS OF
IMAGES, AND IT’S GOING TO TAKE QUITE A WHILE FOR US TO GET ALL
OF THE DATA DOWN. IT WILL, IN FACT, TAKE MORE THAN
A YEAR TO GET ALL OF THE DATA DOWN, BUT I THINK THAT FROM WHAT
WE GET IN THE NEXT WEEK, WE GET A GOOD, YOU KNOW, A GREAT IDEA
OF EXACTLY HOW COMPLEX THE PLUTO SYSTEM IS AND WHAT’S IN STORE
FOR US. AS WE SIT THERE ON OUR COMPUTERS
DURING THE NEXT YEAR AND WATCH THOSE IMAGES COME IN AND THE
SPECTRA COME IN, WE’RE GETTING THE COMPOSITION, WE’RE MEASURING
THE PROPERTIES OF THE ATMOSPHERE, ALL OF THESE THINGS
THAT WE’LL BE DOING IS JUST, YOU KNOW, GOING TO BE A
TREASURE-TROVE OF SCIENTIFIC RESULTS.
>>YESTERDAY NIGHT, BOY DO WE HAVE A LOT TO LOOK FORWARD TO,
RIGHT?>>ABSOLUTELY, YES.
>>HAL, THANKS FOR JOINING US. APPRECIATE THAT.
OKAY, LET’S GO BACK INTO MISSION OPERATIONS.
YOU KNOW, MARK, YOU’VE BEEN A MISSION OPERATIONS MANAGER ON
SEVERAL PROJECTS. HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR A MOMENT?
OPERATIONS TEAMS ALL THE TIME, YOU’RE GETTING SIGNALS BACK FROM
THE SPACECRAFT, BUT ON A NIGHT LIKE TONIGHT WHEN YOU KNOW IT’S
A BIG ONE.>>THIS IS A VERY SPECIAL NIGHT.
THEY ARE GOING TO BRING UP ALL THEIR FAVORITE DISPLAYS TO LOOK
AT TELEMETRY THEY ARE USED TO LOOKING AT, THEY KNOW THEY HAVE
ABOUT 15 MINUTES TO DO THEIR ASSESSMENT BEFORE THEY ARE
PULLED. AND THEN, YOU KNOW, I’M SURE
THEY ARE ALL SET UP AND READY TO GO.
SO THERE’S SORT OF LIKE THIS LONG QUIET PERIOD WHERE THEY
SORT OF REFLECT BACK ON THE MISSION, LIKE A LOT OF US ARE
TONIGHT, AND THEY START TELLING STORIES.
AND SO REFLECTING ON SOME OF THE GOOD TIMES AND SOME OF THE NOT
SO GOOD TIMES.>>WHAT ARE THEY LISTENING FOR
IN MISSION OPERATIONS TONIGHT?>>WELL, INITIALLY THEY ARE
GOING TO BE LISTENING FOR AND LOOKING FOR LOCK ON THE CARRIER,
THE SIGNAL FROM THE SPACECRAFT, AND THEN IT TAKES A LITTLE WHILE
BEFORE THE RECEIVERS LOCK UP AND WE GET DATA LOCK.
AT THAT POINT†–>>TALKING NEW NEW HORIZONS AND
THE GROUND SPACE ARE TALKING?>>AT THAT POINT WE’LL KNOW THAT
THE SPACECRAFT’S ALIVE AND HEALTHY AND MORE THAN LIKELY
CONFIGURED PROPERLY, OTHERWISE IT WOULDN’T BE TRANSMITTING AT
THE DATA RATE WE’RE LOOKING FOR. AND IT WILL TAKE A LITTLE WHILE,
THOUGH, FOR THE PACKETS TO COME IN THE ENGINEERS NEED TO LOOK AT
TO MAKE THEIR ASSESSMENT. THEN SOME TIME WILL PASS.
INITIALLY YOU’RE GOING TO HEAR A BIT OF AN UPROAR COMING FROM THE
OPS CENTER ONCE WE GET TO THAT POINT.
>>ONCE YOU KNOW THE DATA IS CONNECTED, NEXT AFTER THAT, MAKE
SURE IT’S HEALTHY.>>THE MISSION OPS MANAGER WILL
HAVE TO SORT OF CALL TO ORDER AND ASK PEOPLE TO START DOING
WHAT THEY ARE THERE TO DO, YOU KNOW, PERFORM THEIR ASSESSMENT
AND REPORT STATUS.>>YOU KNOW, WHEN YOUR
SPACECRAFT IS 3 BILLION MILES AWAY, THERE’S NO SUCH THING AS
REALTIME OPERATIONS. I MEAN, THE SIGNAL NEW HORIZONS
SENT HOME TONIGHT ACTUALLY LEFT THE SPACECRAFT SOME FOUR AND A
HALF HOURS AGO. IF WE TAKE A LOOK AT NEW
HORIZONS NOW FROM NASA’S EYES ON THE PROGRAM, WE CAN SEE THE
SPACECRAFT SOME 400,000 MILES PAST PLUTO, GOING THROUGH ITS
POST FLY BY OPERATIONS OF THE SYSTEM.
STILL HAS WORK TO DO, YOU CAN SEE THIS ON THERE.
YOU CAN RIDE ALONG WITH NEW HORIZONS ON I.NASA.GOV.
IN JUST A FEW MINUTES, WE’LL BE WAITING TO SEE IF NEW HORIZONS
WILL BE DELIVERING THE GOODS THAT LEAD TO A HOST OF
DISCOVERIES ABOUT THIS UNKNOWN REGION OF DEEP SPACE.
THE ENTIRE MISSION CAN TRACE ITS ROOTS BACK TO A SINGLE DISCOVERY
IN 1930 WHEN A KANSAS FARM BOY DILIGENTLY SCANNING PHOTOGRAPHIC
PLATES AT LOW OBSERVATORY FOUND PLUTO.
HERE’S A LOOK AT THE DISCOVERER FROM TWO PEOPLE WHO KNEW HIM
WELL. MM
>>MY NAME IS ANNETTE, AND I AM CLIVE’S OLDEST CHILD.
>>I’M OLDEN, I’M HIS SON. A LOT OF THE DETAILS OF THE
DISCOVERY OF PLUTO ACTUALLY STARTED WITH MY FATHER TELLING
MY SISTER AND I ABOUT HOW HE GOT THE OPPORTUNITY TO BE IN THE
DISCOVERY PROCESS AT THE OBSERVATORY.
>>IT STARTED OUT IN FARMING. HE WORKED WITH THE SOIL.
WHEN HE MOVED TO KANSAS, THERE WERE A LOT OF FOSSILS THERE, AND
HE WONDERED ABOUT LIFE ON OTHER WORLDS, OTHER PLANETS.
>>HE DIDN’T HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY AT THAT TIME TO GO
TO COLLEGE. THEY HAD HAD SEVERAL BAD YEARS
OF CROP BECAUSE OF THE WEATHER CONDITIONS.
THEY BARELY HAD ENOUGH MONEY TO RECEDE THEIR NEXT YEAR’S CROPS.
>>HE STARTED OUT BUILDING TELESCOPES AND HE ENJOYED
WORKING WITH GLASS. HE LIKES THE PROCESS OF GRINDING
THE MIRRORS AND PUTTING THE OPTICS TOGETHER AND ASSEMBLING
IT ALL AND USING LEFTOVERS FROM THE FARM EQUIPMENT TO MAKE THEM.
HE CAME OUT OF THE DEPRESSION AND HE USED EVERYTHING HE COULD.
>>FIRST ONE WAS PRETTY MISERABLE FAILURE IN HIS WORDS.
THEN THE THIRD ONE HE BUILT WAS THE NINE INCH.
AND THAT TURNED OUT TO BE A VERY GOOD TELESCOPE.
AND IT ENABLED HIM TO BE ABLE TO DRAW PICTURES OF HIS MARS
OBSERVATIONS.>>WHEN HE FIRST WROTE TO THE
OBSERVATORY, HE WANTED THEM TO GIVE HIM SUGGESTIONS TO BUILD
BETTER TELESCOPES. AND SO HE SENT THEM SOME OF HIS
DRAWINGS OF MARS AND JUPITER, AND THEY WROTE BACK THAT THEY
WOULD LIKE TO HIRE HIM TO WORK THERE.
HE HAD TO POUR THE EMULSIONS FOR THE PHOTOGRAPHIC PLATES, BECAUSE
IN THOSE DAYS YOU POURED YOUR OWN EMULSIONS.
SO THE SURFACE OF THE PLATES HAD TO BE SLIGHTLY CURVED, THEY
WOULD BREAK. SO HE REDESIGNED THE PLATE
HOLDER SO THAT THEY WOULDN’T HAVE THAT PROBLEM.
>>THEN IS WHEN HE HAD TO REALLY BUCKLE DOWN TO THE DRUDGERY OF
LOOKING FOR A PLANET.>>HE DID IT, IT TAKES TIME.
YOU DO THOSE EXPOSURES, THEN MAYBE A WEEK LATER OR EVEN
LONGER YOU BLINK THE PLATES BACK AND FORTH AND THEN YOU WOULD
VERIFY AND PREDICT WHERE IT WOULD BE AND ANOTHER PARTICULAR
NIGHT.>>WE GOT A PRETTY CLEAR
INDICATION AT THAT POINT IN TIME OF HOW MUCH WORK IT REALLY DID
TAKE, BECAUSE JUST A MASSIVE NUMBER OF OBJECTS HE HAD TO
SCAN.>>NEED THOSE LITTLE TINY SPECKS
OF LIGHT, THEY ARE LIKE FLY SPECKS ON A PIECE OF GRASS.
HE THOUGHT HE HAD FOUND SOMETHING, SO HE GOT UP AND WENT
INTO THE DOCTOR’S OFFICE AND SAID, DOCTOR, I BELIEVE I FOUND
YOUR PLANET “X.” FOR A MINUTE, HE WAS THE ONLY,
ONLY ONE WHO KNEW THAT THERE WAS ANOTHER OBJECT OUT THERE,
ANOTHER PLANET. AND THAT MADE HIM FEEL ELATED,
UNUSUAL. THEN HE LATER ON MOVED TO NEW
MEXICO, HE WORKED FOR WHITE SAND ON THE ROCKETS, TRACKING THEM
AND DESIGNING PATTERNS THAT WOULD MAKE IT EASIER TO TRACK
THEM. AS HE GOT OLDER, IT GOT HARDER
AND HARDER FOR HIM TO MOVE HIS TELESCOPES AROUND TO INSPIRE
OTHER PEOPLE TO TEACH THEM TO TAKE IT OUT TO THE SCHOOLS.
>>HE MOUNTED IT ON AN OLD LAWN MOWER BASE IN ORDER TO MAKE IT
EASILY TRANSPORTABLE.>>IT WORKED OUT BEAUTIFULLY AND
HE JUST PUT IT IN A LITTLE SHED, SOMEBODY WOULD COME OVER, HE’D
PULL IT OUT. WE CALLED IT THE CRAZER GAZER,
AS IN GRAZING, MOWING THE LAWN, AND GAZING AT THE STARS.
I THINK MY DAD WOULD BE THRILLED WITH THE NEW HORIZONS.
I MEAN, WHO WOULDN’T BE? WHEN HE LOOKED AT PLUTO, IT WAS
JUST A SPECK OF LIGHT.>>SOME OF MY FATHER’S ASHES ARE
ON THAT SPACECRAFT, AND PART OF HIM GOT TO VISIT THE SPECK ON
THE PLATES THAT HE DISCOVERED IN 1930.
IT’S GOING TO BE SOMETHING THAT HAS BECOME AN INTEGRAL PART OF
OUR LIVES, AND OUR FAMILY’S LIVES.
>>HE WOULD HAVE BEEN ASTOUNDED, AND I’M SURE THAT TO HAVE THE
PLANET THAT YOU DISCOVERED BETTER DEFINED, BETTER
UNDERSTOOD, IT WOULD HAVE MEANT SO MUCH TO HIM.
>>A LOT OF HISTORY ON A.P.L. THIS WEEK AS WE CELEBRATE, YOU
KNOW, NEW HORIZONS HISTORIC ACHIEVEMENT.
TODAY MARKS THE 50th ANNIVERSARY OF FORD’S FLIGHT TO MARS, YOU
KNOW, WHICH GAVE US OUR FIRST CLOSE-UP LOOK AT THE RED PLANET.
OF COURSE, THEY ARE HERE IN THE AUDIENCE TONIGHT, THEIR FAMILY,
AS WELL AS JIM CHRISTIE, WHO DISCOVERED PLUTO IN 1978 AND HIS
DAUGHTER SHARON. [ APPLAUSE ]
ONLY ONE DISCOVERY OF PLUTO, JIM CHRISTIE DISCOVERED SHARON IN
1978. ALSO SYLVIA DAY THOMAS, DAUGHTER
OF GERARD KUIPER, NAME SAKE OF THE KUIPER BELT WHERE PLUTO
RESIDES, ALSO OUR PLUTO PALS, KIDS BORN ON THE DAY NEW
HORIZONS LAUNCHED OR TURN TEN ON THAT DAY ON JANUARY 19th, 2006.
AND, OF COURSE, FOR THOSE AROUND THE WORLD, THERE’S OPPORTUNITY
TO JOIN IN THIS CONVERSATION ON NASA SOCIAL THROUGH VARIOUS
MEANS. THERE’S THE NASA WEBSITE
WWW.NASA.GOV/NEWHORIZONS. ON TWITTER, WITH
THE†#PLUTOFLYBY. SO MANY OPTIONS ON SOCIAL MEDIA.
THERE HAS BEEN SO MUCH ACTIVITY ON SOCIAL MEDIA TODAY, STARTING
WITH BEFORE THAT PICTURE CAME OUT THIS MORNING, BUT AFTER
THAT, THINGS JUST BLEW UP. WHAT’S GOING ON, JASON?
>>ALL RIGHT. NEW HORIZONS HAS HAD AN
ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE DAY ONLINE.
I MEAN, THE MISSION AND PLUTO’S FLY BY, IT’S BEEN TRENDING ALL
DAY LONG, REMAINING THE TOP STORY BASICALLY ON FACEBOOK AND
TWITTER TODAY. WE’VE HAD SEVERAL HOURS OF
ENGAGEMENT WHERE OUR EXPERTS HAVE BEEN OUT FROM THE MISSION
OUT ANSWERING YOUR QUESTIONS, ANSWERED HUNDREDS OF THEM
THROUGH THINGS LIKE REDDIT†AMA, ASK ME ANYTHING, WHERE YOU
LITERALLY ASK THOUSANDS OF QUESTIONS FROM OUR EXPERTS AND
ALSO A SPEED CHAT WHERE WE WERE ABLE TO ANSWER A LOT OF YOUR
QUESTIONS ON TWITTER. WE’VE ALSO HAD A LOT OF BRANDS,
CELEBRITY, AND SOCIAL MEDIA INFLUENCERS OUT THERE WHO HAVE
BEEN ENGAGING WITH US ON THIS HISTORIC EVENT, AND ALTHOUGH
WE’RE STILL CRUNCHING THE NUMBERS, TODAY MIGHT BE NASA’S
BIGGEST DAY EVER ON SOCIAL MEDIA WITH REGARD TO ENGAGEMENT AND
REACH. SO THIS MORNING’S SNEAK PEEK
IMAGE ON INSTAGRAM HAS BEEN THE MOST POPULAR IMAGE NASA HAS EVER
POSTED TO INSTAGRAM, WITH OVER 295,000 LIKES AND GROWING.
WE’VE HAD OVER 49,000 FOLKS WHO RETWEETED THIS MORNING’S NEW
HORIZONS TWEET, AND THE BEST PART REALLY THROUGHOUT THE
ENTIRE DAY HAS BEEN THE EXCITEMENT WHILE FOLLOWING THIS
CONVERSATION ONLINE. IT’S TRULY BEEN ENERGETIC AND
ABSOLUTELY INSPIRING, SO KEEP FOLLOWING ALONG WITH NASA AND
NEW HORIZONS AT†@NASA, OUR FACEBOOK PAGES, INSTAGRAM
ACCOUNT, AND GOOGLE PLUS ACCOUNT.
SO KEEP FOLLOWING ALONG.>>GREAT, JASON, THANK YOU.
YOU KNOW, WE’RE GETTING CLOSE, MARK.
>>VERY CLOSE.>>WHEN YOU WERE AT THE CONSOLE
ABOUT THIS TIME, WAITING FOR SOMETHING, WAITING FOR THE
SIGNAL FOR SOMETHING TO HAPPEN, WHAT DID IT FEEL LIKE?
>>EXTREMELY ANXIOUS.>>WHETHER IT WAS SOMETHING AS
SIMPLE AS†– WOULD YOU EVER STRESS SO MUCH JUST FOR A
SIGNAL?>>NO.
YOU HAVE TO SIT THERE AND WAIT, BE PATIENT.
ON THIS MISSION YOU LEARN PATIENCE IS A VIRTUE.
>>NINE AND A HALF YEARS, MINUTES AWAY FROM SOMETHING
ELSE.>>JUST A COUPLE OF MINUTES.
>>I THINK WE CAN GO TO MISSION OPERATIONS RIGHT NOW.
LET’S TAKE A LOOK INSIDE.>>OKAY, WE’RE IN LOCK WITH
CARRIER. STAND BY FOR TELEMETRY. .
>>CARL WHITTENBURG, MISSIONS OPERATIONS TEAM.
DEEP SPACE NETWORK.>>IN LOCK ON SYMBOLS.
>>THAT’S THE FIRST STEP. GETTING DATA?
>>OKAY. COPY THAT, WE’RE IN LUCK WITH
TELEMETRY WITH THE SPACECRAFT. [ CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ]
[ CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ]>>OKAY.
>>WOW. SYSTEMS, PLEASE REPORT YOUR
STATUS AS YOU GET ENOUGH DATA.>>SYSTEMS REPORTING THEIR
STATUS.>>MOM, THIS IS RF ON PLUTO 1.
>>GO AHEAD, RF.>>RF IS REPORTING NOMINAL
CARRIER POWER, NOMINAL RATIO FOR THE TELEMETRY.
RF IS NOMINAL.>>COPY THAT.
RF NOMINAL.>>AUTONOMY ON PLUTO 1.
>>GO AHEAD.>>HAPPY TO REPORT NOMINAL
STATUS, NO RULES HAVE FIRED. [ CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ]
>>GO AHEAD, CBH.>>CBH REPORTS NOMINAL STATUS.
SSR POINTERS ARE WHERE WE EXPECT THEM TO BE, WHICH MEANS WE
RECORDED THE EXPECTED AMOUNT OF DATA.
>>COPY THAT. LOOKS LIKE WE HAVE A GOOD DATA
REPORT. [ CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ]
>>THIS IS GMC ON PLUTO 1.>>GO AHEAD GNC.
>>NOMINAL, ALL HARDWARE IS HEALTHY AND WE HAVE A GOOD
NUMBER OF THRUSTER COUNTS.>>COPY THAT, GNC IS HEALTHY.
[ APPLAUSE ]>>MOM, THIS IS PROPULSION ON
PLUTO 1.>>GO AHEAD, POP.
>>PROPULSION IS NOMINAL. PRESSURE IS 176.8.
>>COPY THAT. PROPULSION SYSTEM IS NOMINAL.
[ APPLAUSE ]>>MOM, THIS IS POWER ON PLUTO
1.>>GO AHEAD, POWER.
>>POWER SYSTEM ALL TELEMETRY IS NOMINAL.
HARDWARE HEALTHY.>>COPY THAT, NOMINAL FOR POWER.
>>MOM? [ APPLAUSE ]
>>MOM, THIS IS THERMAL ON PLUTO 1.
>>GO AHEAD, THERMAL.>>THERMAL REPORTS NOMINAL.
ALL TEMPERATURES GREEN.>>COPY THAT.
THERMAL IS NOMINAL. ALL TEMPERATURES GREEN.
[ APPLAUSE ] OKAY.
PI, MOM ON PLUTO 1, WE HAVE A HEALTHY SPACECRAFT.
WE’VE RECORDED DATA OF THE PLUTO SYSTEM, AND WE’RE OUTBOUND FOR
PLUTO. [ CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ]
[ CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ] [ CHEERS AND APPLAUSE ]
>>WE DID IT. IT’S GREAT.
[ APPLAUSE ]>>I GUESS FOR ANYONE, FOR JUST
A FEW PEOPLE WHO DIDN’T KNOW WHO THAT WAS THAT CAME BARGING IN
THE ROOM WHEN THAT HAPPENED, THAT WAS A SLIGHTLY HAPPY
MISSION PRINCIPLE INVESTIGATOR ALLEN STERN, WHO HAS JUST POURED
SO MUCH TIME, INVESTMENT, HEART, SOUL, LIKE SO MANY PEOPLE ON THE
NEW HORIZONS TEAM TO GET TO THIS POINT.
MARK, KIND OF HARD TO BE IMPARTIAL SITTING HERE WATCHING
THIS, BUT YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS?>>WELL, I CAN’T SAY, YOU KNOW,
HOW PROUD I AM TO BE PART OF THE TEAM AND OF THE TEAM FOR ALL THE
EFFORTS THEY’VE MADE BUILDING THE SPACECRAFT AND TESTING IT
AND FLYING IT FOR OVER NINE YEARS TO GET TO THIS POINT.
IT’S REALLY AN AMAZING ACCOMPLISHMENT.
HOW OFTEN DO WE UNLOCK THE SECRETS, YOU KNOW, OF A NEW
WORLD? WE DID THAT TODAY.
HOW COOL IS THAT? [ APPLAUSE ]
>>NASA ADMINISTRATOR, ASSOCIATE ADMINISTRATOR, AND JOHN RUMSFELD
IN MISSIONS OPERATIONS WITH ALEX BOWMAN, TERRIFIC DAY FOR THE NEW
HORIZONS MISSION. SO WE’RE BACK HERE, A LITTLE
MORE OF THE ATMOSPHERE IN THERE, BUT WE’RE GOING TO RESET HERE AT
A.P.L. FOR A MEDIA BRIEFING APPROXIMATELY AROUND 9:30.
WE WANT TO GIVE THE PARTICIPANTS TIME TO GET HERE FROM MISSION
OPERATIONS, AND TOMORROW WE EXPECT OUR FIRST POST FLY BY
LOOK AT THE PLUTO SYSTEM SENT BACK FROM A HEALTHY AND VERY
MUCH ALIVE NEW HORIZONS SPACECRAFT.
[ APPLAUSE ] SO THAT’S OUR PROGRAM FOR
TONIGHT. STAY TUNED FOR NASA FLY BY MEDIA
BRIEFING LIVE FROM A.P.L. I’M MIKE BUCKLEY, AND FOR MARK
AND THE ENTIRE NASA NEW HORIZONS TEAM, THANKS FOR WATCHING.

54 thoughts on “New Horizon Phones Home”

  1. There is still a frontier out there to explore and congratulations for all of your outstanding work. I am feeling nostalgic, remembering flybys of Uranus and Neptune.

  2. When it radio's back, is it encrypted or do you need supper computers and equipment to read the signals? Is there a way for armatures to pick up these signals?

  3. A huge congrats to the team. Wow. I cannot (and do not want to) imagine the relief all of you must have felt when good health came back. "We explore because we are human, and we want to know." True words that became reality. Well done New Horizons.

  4. Feels great to see almost what is science fiction become a fact in my lifetime!  Great job by the fantastic team at NASA

  5. beautiful program guys! congrats on a successful mission 15 years in the process.
    cant wait to see more pics and info as it becomes public.

  6. Congratulations to NASA , and the Pluto´s Team! You deserve it, you worked hard and this is the Payday for YYYou and humanity, at  The very complex planning where you put together everyone´s piece of knowledge to make a unique piece of science but to yield greater results that no living human being will ever forget!!!

  7. Hay guys.. i wonder why Nasa dont publish more photos of Pluto since the spacecraft reached there since yesterday, I only see the same photo that is every where.. can any one tell me,, and if there is more photos where can I find it??

  8. I missed this live. Hmm.
    But i have watched through everything, and congratulations NASA! And the world. Awesome!
    Cant wait to check out high resolution images.
    One year of sending images is a long time..
    I will follow up from time to time. 😉

    But of what i have seen, its a cool looking planet. Interesting.

  9. Congrats to all of you- who worked so hard on this !  Thank You all – to the known & the unknown behind the scenes ! To give a quote from a movie : " A Whole New World"….& " Patience Yago…Patience" !  ( Alladin )

  10. Mankind can do this! So why can't we get rid of all the religious nutcases and the warmongers and the greedy coorporate bastards ruining our lives? It's exhilerating and depressing at the same time!

    Great job, NASA! And great job America!

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