PDA

View Full Version : Starduster, my dad designed on this!


cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:08 PM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110215/ap_on_sc/us_sci_valentine_comet


PASADENA, Calif. A NASA spacecraft zipped past a comet half the size of Manhattan in a Valentine's Day rendezvous that scientists hope will shed light on these icy solar system bodies.
Speeding at 24,000 mph, Stardust zoomed by comet Tempel 1 on Monday night, snapping six dozen high-resolution pictures along the way. At nearest approach, the craft passed within 112 miles of the potato-shaped comet closer than the original prediction.
Instead of erupting in cheers, mission controllers at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory puzzled over why images from the flyby were not downloading in the order that they wanted.
NASA had planned to wow the world by playing back the images in reverse order, starting with five close-up shots of Tempel 1's nucleus. Instead, the first images to pop up on scientists' computer screens early Tuesday showed the comet as a tiny speck from a distance away.
"We still don't understand fully why this didn't work the way we planned," said Chris Jones, an associate director at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which managed the mission.
All the flyby pictures were stored aboard Stardust. "They're not lost," Jones said.




This was the last big thing my dad worked on before he retired. He's passed away but everytime I read about his spacecraft still flying through space I get chills. I have a plaque from JPL and NASA thanking my dad for all his work. He designed the cameras that use triangulation with the stars to keep the spacecraft on its course. Sounds simple but hard to make cameras work in space lol.

It's main mission was to grab interstellar dust and that mission was complete a while ago. It actually opened up and gathered the dust from behind a comet, then shot that cannister back to earth.

Still very proud of pops and all the cool stuff he did for our country. From being an electricians mate in the Navy, no college, to becoming one of the best desgin engineers Perkin Elmer and JPL and Corning ever had. He worked on the Hubble Space telescope and all sort of other big things. Sort of feels like he is still around knowing that those things are still helping science figure more and more out about the universe still today.

PRBronco
02-15-2011, 12:16 PM
Dude that's awesome ^5

Unless that comet dust introduced aliens to Earth.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:24 PM
Dude that's awesome ^5

Unless that comet dust introduced aliens to Earth.

I'm not sure exactly what they found I need to read up on it. I did pay attention to when the capsule returned and was sad because I knew my dad would have loved to be around for that. I bet though they weren't breathing anything in when they opened that stuff up. :)

What was cool is my dads design was sort of old. They wanted something more advanced. My dad was an old school analog specialist who was mostly self taught. He just got a job as a technician in the 70's and worked his way up. One of the only master engineers without a masters degree in Perkin Elmer history. So when the new guidance didn't work they called my dad back from retirement and he got to make a ton of money!! He was the only one who knew how his cameras really worked and needed him to tweak the design to work on starduster.

I can remember him out at his place in the desert, weird looking cameras pointing at the sky, with him on his laptop doing god knows what lol. I never had the aptitude he did for this stuff.

A lot of engineers were skeptical you guide something that far with something as simple as taking pictures of fixed stars with cameras. But it is an age old proven way of figuring out where you are.

epicSocialism4tw
02-15-2011, 12:25 PM
http://images.drillspot.com/pimages/1375/137537_300.jpg

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:26 PM
Dude that's awesome ^5

Unless that comet dust introduced aliens to Earth.

Also if it brought back something that killed us all off....That would make it even cooler, ROFL!

I mean who gets to have a dad that destroys the earth? Al gores kids get to have one that saves it, but whatever!

TheElusiveKyleOrton
02-15-2011, 12:26 PM
Dude that's awesome ^5

Unless that comet dust introduced aliens to Earth.

They're takin' our jerrrrbs!

Seriously though, that's cool as hell.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:27 PM
http://images.drillspot.com/pimages/1375/137537_300.jpg

Funny because when my dad was working on it I had said it's like the spaceship on space balls that turned into a vacume. My dad was just like.....go play your music!!!!!! :)

DomCasual
02-15-2011, 12:27 PM
Who did your dad work for? My dad worked at Martin Marietta (now Lockheed, I think), for thirty years - he worked every day of his career on the Titan III missile family. One of my favorite memories as a child was family day at his work, when we would tour the facilities up Waterton Canyon.

epicSocialism4tw
02-15-2011, 12:29 PM
Funny because when my dad was working on it I had said it's like the spaceship on space balls that turned into a vacume. My dad was just like.....go play your music!!!!!! :)

Yeah, that thing flies pretty fast. ;D Its just annoying that you have to keep shaking out that filter. Tell your dad to start working on that problem. ;D

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:32 PM
When I was really young I got to go see a telescope he helped build. At the time it was the 3rd largest in the world. I think it is in Russia somewhere now? Not sure. Just really cool stuff when your a kid! Hell even as an adult its still cool.

I ran into one of my dads navy buddies from the 50's once. I was wearing the USS Ruppertus hat i got from dad and this old dude approached me.

He looked mad as he was walking to me and I was sort of tripping. He was like 75, but looked like he could still kick my ass lol. He said son, you aren't old enough to have been on the Ruppertus. I said I know i bought this hat because my dad was on the ship. Turned out he knew my dad!!! He said my dad help that ship together with tape, wire and spit! I believe it because my dad could rig up anything and make it work.

From poor as dirt, farmer in Nebraska, joined the military, went on to design all sorts of things. Worked on the minuteman missile also!.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:33 PM
Who did your dad work for? My dad worked at Martin Marietta (now Lockheed, I think), for thirty years - he worked every day of his career on the Titan III missile family. One of my favorite memories as a child was family day at his work, when we would tour the facilities up Waterton Canyon.

My dad worked for Rockwell, Perkin Elmer, then Corning. But Corning subcontracted to Martin Marietta and JPL. His name was Loren Sample and they probably worked around each other at some point because it sounds like they chewed the same dirt.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:34 PM
Yeah, that thing flies pretty fast. ;D Its just annoying that you have to keep shaking out that filter. Tell your dad to start working on that problem. ;D

I wish i could man but he passed away in 2005 from a heart attack on Christmas Night.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:36 PM
Here is to our dads. Be they ditch diggers or oil tycoons, they are the best men we will ever know! If you can't say that I really feel sorry for you. I was lucky to have such a great dad who never let me down even once.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:39 PM
Next time I am at my moms I will take a picture of the plaque nasa and JPL gave my dad. It's made out of metal from the starduster left overs and inscribed with all these sigs of engineers that gave my dad props for his cameras. He was an unknown really but people involved in the project know how him coming in late and fixing the cameras sort of saved the whole thing.

Then craft worked so well, was guided so effeciently it had enough fuel left to do this second mission. Rare for NASA for things to go so well lol!

epicSocialism4tw
02-15-2011, 12:39 PM
I wish i could man but he passed away in 2005 from a heart attack on Christmas Night.

Sorry to hear that. Sounds like quite a man.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:40 PM
His cameras were also on the mars probe that crashed. Do you guys remember that? When some dude at JPL did his math wrong and sent spacecraft hurling into the planet. Man there were some depressed engineers over that one.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 12:44 PM
Sorry to hear that. Sounds like quite a man.

It could seriously be a movie like October Sky in a way. My dad was so poor that he had one pair of overalls. Thats it. Wear the same thing every day! Grandpa was a farmer in Nebraska, a gambler and a drunk. Not a bad man just poor and drank too much. All my uncles and my dad went military first chance they got.

My dad was in Marines but they instantly noticed his aptitude for engineering and transferred him to the NAVY were he was an electricians mate.

I would just need to make up some cool movie stuff and boom its the feel good movie of the yr!

epicSocialism4tw
02-15-2011, 12:57 PM
It could seriously be a movie like October Sky in a way. My dad was so poor that he had one pair of overalls. Thats it. Wear the same thing every day! Grandpa was a farmer in Nebraska, a gambler and a drunk. Not a bad man just poor and drank too much. All my uncles and my dad went military first chance they got.

My dad was in Marines but they instantly noticed his aptitude for engineering and transferred him to the NAVY were he was an electricians mate.

I would just need to make up some cool movie stuff and boom its the feel good movie of the yr!

Justin Bieber could play your dad as a kid. Then someone like Justin Timberlake as the young "cutthemdown's dad".

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 01:16 PM
Justin Bieber could play your dad as a kid. Then someone like Justin Timberlake as the young "cutthemdown's dad".

It's not a musical dammit.

epicSocialism4tw
02-15-2011, 01:18 PM
It's not a musical dammit.

Hey...you could force your way into that gig if it was a musical. Then you go on tour with Timberlake and travel playing horn for 8 months. I'm just looking out for you here. ;D

DomCasual
02-15-2011, 01:49 PM
My dad worked for Rockwell, Perkin Elmer, then Corning. But Corning subcontracted to Martin Marietta and JPL. His name was Loren Sample and they probably worked around each other at some point because it sounds like they chewed the same dirt.

Are you familiar with that property up Waterton Canyon? My dad worked at the top of one of the silos where they stored the missiles. I would look forward to family day for a month - I LOVED going up to the top of that thing. We'd take this industrial elevator to the top of the silo, and then walk ocross this grated walkway that must have been ten stories high. I must have been seven or eight. It was incredible. I would hold my breath and try not to look down.

Hanging on my wall, right across from my desk, is one of my dad's retirement gifts. It's a 16" X 20" picture of one of the Titan IIIc's he worked on, signed by everyone in his department. These were guys he had worked with for decades. I don't think companies really work that way anymore.

But our dads do sound a lot alike. Mine grew up in Manhattan during the Great Depression. He was the very definition of poor. He started with Boeing, and ended up with Martin.

Los Broncos
02-15-2011, 02:11 PM
That's pretty sweet, I don't know if I've ever met your dad.

llayne
02-15-2011, 02:13 PM
Really cool stuff. My grandfather was a naval engineer as well, and worked on(I think Nuclear energy for aircraft carriers.)

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 03:14 PM
Are you familiar with that property up Waterton Canyon? My dad worked at the top of one of the silos where they stored the missiles. I would look forward to family day for a month - I LOVED going up to the top of that thing. We'd take this industrial elevator to the top of the silo, and then walk ocross this grated walkway that must have been ten stories high. I must have been seven or eight. It was incredible. I would hold my breath and try not to look down.

Hanging on my wall, right across from my desk, is one of my dad's retirement gifts. It's a 16" X 20" picture of one of the Titan IIIc's he worked on, signed by everyone in his department. These were guys he had worked with for decades. I don't think companies really work that way anymore.

But our dads do sound a lot alike. Mine grew up in Manhattan during the Great Depression. He was the very definition of poor. He started with Boeing, and ended up with Martin.

Wow it does sound very similar. I never saw the place you are talking about but sounds like the thing kids dream about. I guess some of my opinions shaped by my dads life. One reason i strongly support a strong military is because its a great way for young men and women to serve country, and get educated. I know that doesn't have anything to do with whether or not to go to war so let's not ruin the thread with stuff like that.

I know in the engineering world, of big govt contracts etc etc, that it is normal for engineers of different companies to work together on stuff and in teams like you describe. Some of these projects take 5-6-7 yrs to finish, even decades sometimes. Because of that it's understandable they form close friendships and have a lot of respect for each other.

Engineers are some of the coolest people you will meet. The think out of the box and generally are some of the smartest people on the planet.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 03:18 PM
That's pretty sweet, I don't know if I've ever met your dad.

You didn't get the chance Adam. Unfortunately he passed away. All I can tell people is make sure to spend as much time with your parents and loved ones when you can. Trust me when I say this, when your dad is gone life changes forever. If you have regrets they will eat at you forever.

Los Broncos
02-15-2011, 03:32 PM
You didn't get the chance Adam. Unfortunately he passed away. All I can tell people is make sure to spend as much time with your parents and loved ones when you can. Trust me when I say this, when your dad is gone life changes forever. If you have regrets they will eat at you forever.

I feel ya, my step and real father are both gone.

But I need to go and see my mother, It's been a while.

Broncos4Life
02-15-2011, 03:36 PM
You didn't get the chance Adam. Unfortunately he passed away. All I can tell people is make sure to spend as much time with your parents and loved ones when you can. Trust me when I say this, when your dad is gone life changes forever. If you have regrets they will eat at you forever.

Thats quite an incredable story. I have to say that 2 weeks ago I had just talked to my dad for the first time in 17 years. We've been talking and he's been suffering from PTSD from his time served in Vietnam. He just got over tongue cancer he got from exposure to agent orange. I'm 33 years old now. Its a long story, but I'm going to see him in a few weeks. Flying from Rockford Illinois all the way to Boise Idaho. I am really excited to see him. Thanks for the great thread.

epicSocialism4tw
02-15-2011, 03:47 PM
You didn't get the chance Adam. Unfortunately he passed away. All I can tell people is make sure to spend as much time with your parents and loved ones when you can. Trust me when I say this, when your dad is gone life changes forever. If you have regrets they will eat at you forever.

The best song about that topic I have heard:

<iframe title="YouTube video player" width="480" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/4r_xJO_s-mE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 04:28 PM
Thats quite an incredable story. I have to say that 2 weeks ago I had just talked to my dad for the first time in 17 years. We've been talking and he's been suffering from PTSD from his time served in Vietnam. He just got over tongue cancer he got from exposure to agent orange. I'm 33 years old now. Its a long story, but I'm going to see him in a few weeks. Flying from Rockford Illinois all the way to Boise Idaho. I am really excited to see him. Thanks for the great thread.

The great thing about humanity is that if two people really want to fix 17 yrs of absence you can do it in a snap of a finger. Just forgive, understand, and start over. By just forgiving people, even when they don't ask or apologize, you can rebuild relationships and have no regrets.

Good luck Broncos4life. I firmly believe sometimes god gives people a second chance all the time. It's just up to us to grab it. Also if it's not god that is your thing I think it is 100% ok to say fate will often give you a 2nd chance. Either way don't be a hater people and take that chance.

HILife
02-15-2011, 04:28 PM
That's great stuff. Glad to here he did some great things.

orinjkrush
02-15-2011, 07:11 PM
very cool, Cut. just remember your dad's brains are in your DNA. make him proud with whatever you do, like he did for you.

cutthemdown
02-15-2011, 08:04 PM
very cool, Cut. just remember your dad's brains are in your DNA. make him proud with whatever you do, like he did for you.

maybe i was adopted? :)

broncocalijohn
02-15-2011, 08:07 PM
Hurry and get BroncoSteven over in this thread so he can get his NASA hard on. Actually, my Dad worked at Rockwell and helped build (not design) the door handle for the Apollo 13 mission. Later worked on the Space Shuttle as a machinest. Pretty cool job but not sure how he felt about it.

Boomhauer
02-16-2011, 05:36 AM
Dude that's awesome ^5

Unless that comet dust introduced aliens to Earth.

Its landing went much smoother than the earlier Genesis solar wind collector.
http://www.abc.es/blogs/nieves/public/Stardust_Capsule_on_Ground_011506.jpg
http://www.newscientist.com/data/images/ns/cms/dn9331/dn9331-1_516.jpg

broncosteven
02-16-2011, 08:45 PM
Hurry and get BroncoSteven over in this thread so he can get his NASA hard on. Actually, my Dad worked at Rockwell and helped build (not design) the door handle for the Apollo 13 mission. Later worked on the Space Shuttle as a machinest. Pretty cool job but not sure how he felt about it.

So he was the guy who hoesed up that missions O2 tanks!!

LOL

I got the emails from NASA as well as a Valentine card from NASA/JPL

News release: 2011-053 Feb. 14, 2011

NASA's Stardust Spacecraft Completes Comet Flyby

The full version of this story with accompanying images is at:
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2011-053&cid=release_2011-053

News release: 2011-053 Feb. 14, 2011

NASA's Stardust Spacecraft Completes Comet Flyby

The full version of this story with accompanying images is at:
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2011-053&cid=release_2011-053

I was going to start a thread but CTD's thread was much better with the family connection!

Cutthemdown has a lot to be proud about, in the REP I left him I told him we should be doing more robotic and manned missons.

strafen
02-16-2011, 08:51 PM
You didn't get the chance Adam. Unfortunately he passed away. All I can tell people is make sure to spend as much time with your parents and loved ones when you can. Trust me when I say this, when your dad is gone life changes forever. If you have regrets they will eat at you forever.

I hear you there.
I've lost both of parents, my dad this past December.
Life never prepares you for moments like that, even if you know it's coming...

broncosteven
02-16-2011, 09:30 PM
Hurry and get BroncoSteven over in this thread so he can get his NASA hard on. Actually, my Dad worked at Rockwell and helped build (not design) the door handle for the Apollo 13 mission. Later worked on the Space Shuttle as a machinest. Pretty cool job but not sure how he felt about it.

Did he work with the Great Guenter Wendt?

cutthemdown
02-16-2011, 10:28 PM
So he was the guy who hoesed up that missions O2 tanks!!

LOL

I got the emails from NASA as well as a Valentine card from NASA/JPL

News release: 2011-053 Feb. 14, 2011

NASA's Stardust Spacecraft Completes Comet Flyby

The full version of this story with accompanying images is at:
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2011-053&cid=release_2011-053

News release: 2011-053 Feb. 14, 2011

NASA's Stardust Spacecraft Completes Comet Flyby

The full version of this story with accompanying images is at:
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.cfm?release=2011-053&cid=release_2011-053

I was going to start a thread but CTD's thread was much better with the family connection!

Cutthemdown has a lot to be proud about, in the REP I left him I told him we should be doing more robotic and manned missons.

These missions are so expensive and were the first to get gutted when govt had to cut back. We do need to keep exploring space. It can seem like a waste but eventually some comet will blast the Earth and we will all die. Might as well find out what we can while we can!! Who knows maybe even a few thousand of us can get off the planet and go on a star trek instead.

Sounds crazy but if we can stay alive for a few hundred more years who knows what they will do.

My dad used to talk about nano-robotics and space exploration. Instead of big expensive exploring you send out thousands of smaller robots all over the solar system.

broncocalijohn
02-16-2011, 10:30 PM
Did he work with the Great Guenter Wendt?

Not sure but we both liked George Wendt on Cheers. NORM!

chickennob2
02-16-2011, 11:14 PM
The best song about that topic I have heard:

<iframe title="YouTube video player" width="480" height="390" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/4r_xJO_s-mE" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

I WAS AT THAT CONCERT!