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February 2004
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Discovery Zone - Can You Answer This?


1. Why are comets visible?

2. What is the difference among the tasks for the three imaging instruments on the Deep Impact mission? The HRI, MRI and ITS?
High Resolution:
Medium Resolution:
Impactor Targeting Sensor:

3. A mission generally has a launch period of several days/weeks to launch because certain circumstances can put a launch on hold. Name six circumstances you think might affect a launch.

4. Why don't we know the orbital period of all comets?

5. Name 4 elements we know exist in comets.

6. What causes a comet tail to form?

7. Is there a "good" spot on the comet for the impactor to hit?

8. What is the role of a Principal Investigator on a mission?

9. Why is understanding math important on a space mission?
There is no specific answer to this one on the web site but as you look at the Technology section and some of the details about how we will impact a comet, you can see that our engineers and scientists use math for everything from planning the trajectory of the spacecraft to deciding the dimensions of spacecraft design.

If you would like to try your hand at some of the math problems our project team has used to develop the Deep Impact mission, check out our Mission Challenges at:

Can You Answer This? - Archive

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Last Updated: 28 Jun 2010