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Awesomeness Round-up – 3/15/11

We’ll soon have some excitement when the ISIM (the structure that will hold the James Webb Space Telescope’s instruments) gets put on the giant centrifuge here at NASA Goddard! Read the release to find out more about why they going to spin the ISIM on a centrifuge!

Credit: NASA/Chris Gunn

Here’s what the centrifuge looks like spinning. Geeked on Goddard has a whole feature written about it and this exclusive footage:

Check out this amazing fly-through of Saturn and its moons done only with Cassini images!

5.6k Saturn Cassini Photographic Animation from stephen v2 on Vimeo.

Theirry Legault has often taken simply amazing astronomical images, often of the space shuttle or ISS (or both!) transiting the sun. He has a stunning ground shot of the ISS in which you can actually make out an astronaut! Head to Phil Plaitt’s blog for the images and a write-up.

While we’re talking about amazing photos of the Sun, look at this one taken by Alan Friedman. You can read more about how he took the photo and see a bigger version. Amazing!

The Reuben H Fleet Science Center has a series of YouTube videos where they show you how to do different science experiments that you can try at home. In this one, they make a “crystal ball” using dry ice. Pretty neat! They give lots of great ideas for related experiments as well!

Other household experiments? Turning a bar of soap into a blob in your microwave (based on a Steve Spangler Science experiment). And how about National Geographic sending engineers into the desert to replicate the flying house scene from Pixar’s “Up” using 300 helium-filled balloons and a little yellow house?


NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration