Jan 7, 2013

NASA to Update TDRS This Month, Calls Me In for Backup, Errrr

I heard from an old friend last week..... NASASocial.
{{ Girly Squeal }}
I was selected, with 59 others, to attend the launch of  NASA's Tracking and Data Relay Satellite-K (TDRS-K) at the end of January.  We'll also go behind the scenes at Kennedy Space Center, meet and interact with engineers, technicians, and other team members from NASA's Space Communications and Networking (SCaN) group.  Two days of intergalactic bliss, ending with the launch of the satellite aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket after dark on Jan. 29th.

NASA began the TDRS project in 1973 with its first launch in '83.  TDRS (pronounced Teedrus) is a set of geosynchronous relay satellites spread out around the globe which provide around-the-clock communications to NASA's most critical missions in low Earth orbit.  It increases the rate of speed for space-to-ground communications.

Nine TDRS satellites have been launched, seven still function and two have been retired, poor things.  The "fleet is aging," my friend, just like all of us.  It's time to replenish the fleet with a new generation of TDRS satellites.  TDRS-K is the first of three satellites to go up and I get to watch it!  I'm pretty excited about that.

With my love of communications and rabid use of social media, it means a lot to me that I get to be a small part of NASA's "vital information pipeline for space-based research and exploration ambitions."  That sentence alone excites me.  Vital information pipeline.  I so want to be a part of that.

PS.  Note to Bryson.  I'm so, so sorry you can't go this time.  We are not allowed to bring a guest.  Maybe next time! Dude, can you look up "geosynchronous" for me? Thx.

For more information about TDRS, visit http://tdrs.gsfc.nasa.gov/.
More from me: Travel:Outerspace.
My last NASA TweetUp
My first NASA TweetUp

Video explanation of TDRS:

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