Black hole hunter: NASA launches space telescope NuSTAR successfully (Video)

By on Jun 14, 2012 in Astronomy, Science, World Comments

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) successfully launched on Wednesday, June 13, 2012 its Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR), as shown in the video below, which aims to unveil secrets of buried black holes in space.

Orbital Sciences Pegasus rocket, which carries the
NuSTAR space telescope, before it was dropped

Image Credit: NASA video

As announced by NASA, NuSTAR was launched from Kwajalein Atoll over the central Pacific Ocean at 12 noon EDT (9 a.m. PDT) that day, and was strapped to an Orbital Sciences Pegasus rocket, both of which strapped to an L-1011 ‘Stargazer’ aircraft, before it was dropped at about 40,000 feet (12,000 meters) high.

According to the report, the 772-pound NuSTAR separated from the rocket around 13 minutes later and sent its first signal at 12:14 p.m. EDT (9:14 a.m. PDT), which was received through NASA‘s Tracking and Data Relay Satellite System.

“We all eagerly await the launch of this novel X-ray observatory.” NASA‘s Astrophysics Division Director Paul Hertz was quoted in the report, with NuSTAR to use a unique set of eyes to see the highest energy X-ray light from the cosmos.

“With its unprecedented spatial and spectral resolution to the previously poorly explored hard X-ray region of the electromagnetic spectrum, NuSTAR will open a new window on the universe and will provide complementary data to NASA‘s larger missions including Fermi, Chandra, Hubble and Spitzer.” Hertz added.

In addition of being a black hole hunter, NASA said that NuSTAR will also study a host of high-energy objects in our universe, including the remains of exploded stars; compact, dead stars; and clusters of galaxies, and will study the sun’s fiery atmosphere, to look for clues as to how it is being heated.

Black hole hunter space telescope NuSTAR, being launched by NASA
Video Credit: NASAKennedy/YouTube

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