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Graphics Software Science

Deep Impact Comet-Smashing Video 133

DynaSoar writes "Dan Maas is the animation expert who produced NASA's Mars Rover animation which was subsequently used in the PBS Nova episodes 'Mars, Dead or Alive' and 'Welcome to Mars,' the majority of which was done while he was a Cornell student on a summer internship at NASA. His most recent release is NASA's best 'artist's conception' of the Tempel 1 Deep Impact mission. Nobody knows what will happen when 820 pounds of metal slams into the comet with 5 kilotons of force, but whatever happens, Maas's digital precreation is probably way more entertaining than NASA's imagery is likely to be. Two versions of the Deep Impact QuickTime video are available. A couple notes of interest: the original Mars video was produced as a music video, using Lenny Kravitz and Holst as soundtracks. This is available only to K-12 educators. Also, in the interview in the first link, when asked for an inspirational quote, he quotes John Carmack."
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Deep Impact Comet-Smashing Video

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  • by sittingnut (88521) <Unga_m&yahoo,com> on Sunday June 26, 2005 @09:51AM (#12914074) Homepage
    We are now so used to manipulated or visualized eye candy of space and planets, that when the real images etc. are released (as with Titan) its very anticlimactic and boring.
  • I'm just glad (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DanielMarkham (765899) on Sunday June 26, 2005 @09:52AM (#12914078) Homepage
    I'm just glad that NASA is finally blowing something up. Enough of these silly robots and picutres, send in some TNT! (I think they call this "active science")

    Blowing things up is always more interesting to the public than plain science missions. Perhaps next we can send some of those old ICMS to the moon. That would be a good show.

    Seriously, NASA has been politicized so much over its entire history. Perhaps publicity impact should be a key factor in planning missions. It certainly couldn't hurt, and it could lead to a lot more funding for them
  • Re:Hmm... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by LurkerXXX (667952) on Sunday June 26, 2005 @10:45AM (#12914335)
    Because they don't want to blow it into pieces. They just want to blow a hole in part of it to see what it's made of and how solidly it is held togeather. A 5 ton charge is plenty for that.

    If they were to send up a vehicle capable of hitting it with 5 megatons, that would either require launching a vehicle of~ 1,000,000 times greather mass (and launching heavy stuff into space is expensive enough, let alone increasig the mass 1 million x), or you would have to send a nuclear bomb rather than a kenetic/chemical charge. I think there are a lot of people on the planet who would be objecting if you wanted to launch a nuclear warhead just for kicks. What if it failed during launch and fell back to earth somewhere, especially somewhere populated.

  • by IxianMach (889465) on Sunday June 26, 2005 @11:08AM (#12914446)
    Your kidding right ? -details.cfm?imageID=1544 []

    You know this is a picture of Titan ?....A moon of Saturn, taken by a spacecraft we have sent there ?

    Let it sink in.
  • Re:NASA TV (Score:2, Insightful)

    by The_Wilschon (782534) on Sunday June 26, 2005 @02:15PM (#12915350) Homepage
    You mean like Christa McAuliffe? She was the grade school teacher who was on board the Challenger in 1986.

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