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Comets have fascinated humans for hundreds of years, and most recently with the idea of creating a "deep impact" upon a comet in order to study the interior composition and makeup of these bodies. With this scientific mission in mind, a team of researchers (including participants from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of Maryland) will send an impactor spacecraft into the Comet Tempel 1 on July 4th, 2005. The data collected from this fascinating experiment will help answer many questions about comets, and should be of interest to research scientists and the general public alike. The site itself contains quite a few helpful sections, including one dedicated to explaining the science behind studying comets. A technology section offers detailed explanations behind much of the flight system, the launch vehicle, and the various instruments on board. The gallery section has some nice animations that show how the mission will encounter and impact Comet Tempel 1. Overall, this is very engaging and well thought out site that explains this mission in jargon-free language.
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Date of Scout Publication 2003-05-23
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