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Archive for Wednesday, February 25, 2009

NASA rocket fails

February 25, 2009

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— A new satellite to track the chief culprit in global warming crashed into the ocean near Antarctica after launch Tuesday, dealing a major setback to NASA’s already weak network for monitoring Earth and its environment from above.

The $280 million mission was designed to answer one of the biggest question marks of global warming: What happens to the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide spewed by the burning of coal, oil and natural gas? How much of it is sucked up and stored by plants, soil and oceans and how much is left to trap heat on Earth, worsening global warming?

“It’s definitely a setback. We were already well behind,” said Neal Lane, science adviser during former President Bill Clinton’s administration. “The program was weak and now it’s really weak.”

For about a decade, scientists have complained of a decline in the study of Earth from space. NASA spent more money looking at other planets than it did at Earth in 2007. That same year, the National Academy of Sciences warned that NASA’s study of Earth “is at great risk” with fewer missions than before and aging satellites.

Minutes after launch Tuesday in California, the satellite fell back to Earth near Antarctica not far from where environment ministers and scientists met Monday to discuss climate change. NASA officials said a protective cover on the satellite didn’t release and fall away, and the extra weight meant the satellite couldn’t reach orbit.

Comments

barrypenders 5 years, 1 month ago

I heard that it hit a polar bear and the fuel spill soaked a couple of seals.

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gr 5 years, 1 month ago

"The $280 million mission "

And this is an example of global warming hype causing harm. Think of what could have been done with that $280 million. How could any good come out of chasing hot air that no matter what was discovered would be twisted in such a way to support the myth?

Some global warmists promote the disconnected idea of alternative energy is a good thing so therefore support global warming. What if that $280 million was used instead to promote alternative energy sources? What if that $280 million was offered as incentives for students to develop alternative energy designs for a contest. Even if not feasible alternative energy source was discovered, the students would learn from the process, and who knows, something else may be discovered along the way. Nothing is learned or gained from chasing hot air. Although, perhaps in this case, figuring out how to ensure protective covers release.

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