Friday, September 13, 2013

Unexpected Passenger on Recent NASA Launch

In a recent NASA "LADEE" launch, (LADEE stands for Lunar Atmosphere & Dust Environment Explorer.  The craft is on a 100 day mission in orbit around the moon.  From the ABC article The purpose of the mission is to gather measurements and explore the moon's atmosphere, sending information back to the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md.) employees discovered that the Minotaur launch rocket had an unexpected stow-away. 

Chris Perry was in charge of setting up cameras to catch still photos of the launch.  In one frame there is the unmistakable outline of a frog.   Perry said that the frog was more than likely about 150 feet away from the rocket when it fired.    

Frogs and toads are common around the Wallops Flight Facility with hundreds  living in the acres of marsh lands surrounding the launch pad.  Quite likely the frogs are attracted to the area by the flies and other insects that proliferate in the area. 

However as NASA employee Keith Koehler stated, "We've never seen this at Wallops before. I've been here 30 years,"

As you can see, the frog's outline shows up clearly in the upper left of the photo.

Read the complete ABC News HERE

No comments: