NASA Announces Comet Hunter Mission and Science Briefing

Press Release From: NASA HQ
Posted: Friday, December 10, 2004


NASA's Deep Impact mission is the subject of a pre- launch mission and science news media briefing at 1 p.m. EST, Tuesday, Dec. 14 in the NASA Headquarters Webb auditorium, 300 E St. S.W., Washington.

Planned liftoff for the mission is Jan. 8, 2005. NASA's Deep Impact spacecraft has a six-month, 431 million kilometer (268 million mile) voyage to comet Tempel 1, where it will send a projectile crashing into the comet. The first time this has ever been attempted, the impact should create a stadium-sized crater, allowing scientists to study pristine material inside the comet dating back to the formation of our solar system.

Briefing panelists:

  • Andy Dantzler, Acting Director, Solar System Division, NASA Headquarters
  • Tom Morgan, Deep Impact Program Scientist, NASHeadquarters
  • Rick Grammier, Deep Impact Project Manager, JPL
  • Mike A'Hearn, Deep Impact Principal Investigator, University of Maryland, Baltimore
  • Karen Meech, Deep Impact Co-Investigator, Institute for Astronomy, (Hilo), Hawaii

The news conference will be carried live on NASA TV with two- way question-and-answer capability from participating agency centers. NASA TV is available on the Web and via satellite in the continental U.S. on AMC-6, Transponder 9C, C-Band, at 72 degrees west longitude. The frequency is 3880.0 MHz. Polarization is vertical, and audio is monaural at 6.80 MHz. In Alaska and Hawaii, NASA TV is available on AMC-7, Transponder 18C, C-Band, at 137 degrees west longitude. The frequency is 4060.0 MHz. Polarization is vertical, and audio is monaural at 6.80 MHz. It will also be webcast live at:

Reporters may listen to the briefing by calling: 818/354-6666. Additional listen-only service is available at: 321/867-1220/1240/1260.

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