NASA Daily News Summary For Release: May 17, 1999 Media Advisory m99-098 Summary: -- Video File

for May 17, 1999 -- Upcoming Live Interview Opportunity: Star Wars...It's Not Just Science Fiction, May 18 -- Upcoming Live Event: NASA Names New Astrobiology Institute Director, May 18 -- Upcoming Live Interview Opportunity: Astrobiology, May 18 ***** No news releases have been issued today. If NASA issues any news releases later today, we will e-mail summaries and Internet URLs to this list. Index of 1999 NASA News Releases: ***** Video File for May 17, 1999 ITEM 1 TERRIERS STUDENT SATELLITE LAUNCH The TERRIERS satellite, built by students at Boston University and scheduled for launch on May 18, could provide a much better understanding of how changes in the ionosphere -- the electrically charged region of the upper atmosphere -- affect global communication systems, satellites, cell phones and pagers. The Tomographic Experiment using Radiative Recombinative Ionospheric Extreme ultraviolet and Radio Sources, TERRIERS, named for the University's mascot, the Boston Terrier, will launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base, CA, at 1:10 a.m. EDT on May 18. ITEM 1A TERRIERS SPACECRAFT ANIMATION TERRIERS will investigate the complex Sun-upper atmosphere relationship. Its primary goal is to understand the complex ionospheric structure and how solar eruptions, called Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs), and geomagnetic storms affect it. The ionosphere is important because it is home to virtually all satellites that make up our communication network - including cell phones, beepers and global positioning systems. Space weather also can have an adverse effect on other orbiting spacecraft. Courtesy: NASA

ITEM 1B EXAMPLES OF TERRIERS SCIENCE OBJECTIVES a) Shuttle Earth view showing the Earth's atmosphere. This image, taken during STS-80, shows the thin blue line of gaseous layers that encompasses the Earth and makes up its atmosphere. The ionosphere is an electrically charged set of layers in the atmosphere extending from altitudes of approximately 50 to 400 km. Courtesy: NASA b) Coronal Mass Ejections. The Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), a solar-observing satellite stationed between the Earth and the Sun, took these images of the near-solar environment. An occulting mask, seen centered in these images, blocks the sun, but allows the faint atmosphere surrounding the sun to be seen. It is clear from these images that the solar atmosphere is highly dynamic. Occasionally, huge surface eruptions (CMEs) expel large clouds of gas into the solar system. Courtesy: NASA/ESA c) Halo CME Event. Occasionally, CME events are ejected toward the Earth. Here, the CME, which is approaching the SOHO spacecraft, looks like a growing halo. Eventually this blast of the solar atmosphere will pass the SOHO spacecraft and interact with the earth. Courtesy: NASA/ESA d) POLAR images of the Aurora Borealis. For the most part, the Earth's atmosphere and magnetic field shield us from the effects of these CMEs. However, spacecraft located above our atmosphere can suffer damages from energetic particles contained within the CME events. These charged particles can cause a significant increase in the aurora. Shown here is a view of the Aurora Borealis, which encircles the northern magnetic pole, as viewed from space using the POLAR satellite. Visible Auroral emissions are known to occur at altitudes ranging from 80 km up to several hundred kilometers. TERRIERS will study the Aurora and the effects of CME events on the Aurora by flying directly through the region where this light is created. TERRIERS will have the unique capability of looking at all light -- from above, below, in front and behind the satellite -- as it travels through these regions, giving scientists a new tool to study auroral processes. Courtesy: NASA ITEM 2C TERRIERS PROCESSING B-ROLL B-roll of students and faculty from Boston University assembling and processing the TERRIERS spacecraft. Courtesy: Boston University ITEM 2D BOSTON UNIVERSITY B-ROLL More than 60 Boston University undergraduate and graduate students have been involved in the science, theory, design, instrument development and testing of the TERRIERS satellite. Courtesy: Boston University

ITEM 2E EXAMPLE OF A PEGASUS LAUNCH. TERRIERS will launch from a Pegasus rocket. This launch footage is from the SeaStar satellite launched August 1, 1998. Courtesy: NASA ITEM 2F INTERVIEW EXCERPTS WITH DANIEL COTTON, TERRIERS PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR, BOSTON UNIVERSITY Courtesy: Boston University ITEM 2G INTERVIEW EXCERPTS WITH ANDREW STEPHAN, TERRIERS MISSION SPECIALIST, BOSTON UNIVERSITY Courtesy: Boston University Contact at NASA Headquarters: Don Savage, 202/358-1727; Contact at NASA Goddard: Susan Hendrix, 301/286-7745; Contact at Boston University: Shauna LaFauci, 617/353-2399. ***** UPCOMING LIVE INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITY: STAR WARS...IT'S NOT JUST SCIENCE FICTION, May 18 TOPIC: The excitement around Star Wars is not limited to movie fans. Warp drives and intergalactic travel are science fiction in the movies, but they're coming closer to reality at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, AL. Right now, engineers and scientists at the Marshall Center -- where the future is now -- are developing space transportation systems that could take us to galaxies far, far away. TALENT: Garry Lyles and George Schmidt, Advanced Space Transportation managers TIME: May 18, 6 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. EDT To book an interview, contact Connie James, 256/544-2188 or pager 256/544-1183 (PIN 0224). ***** UPCOMING LIVE EVENT: NASA NAMES NEW ASTROBIOLOGY DIRECTOR, May 18 NASA Administrator Daniel S. Goldin and Ames Center Director Dr. Henry McDonald will introduce the new director of NASA's Astrobiology Institute during a live news conference on Tuesday, May 18, 1999.

NASA's Astrobiology Institute is a virtual research institution comprised of eleven member institutions from across the country. Astrobiology is an emerging interdisciplinary field that deals with exciting questions about life in the universe: its origin, evolution, distribution and destiny. The press conference announcing the new Director will be carried live on NASA TV from 2-3:00 p.m. EDT (11:0012:00 PDT). More information about Astrobiology is on the web at: Contact at NASA Headquarters: Don Savage, 202/358-1727; Contact at NASA Ames: David Morse, 650/604-4724. ***** UPCOMING LIVE INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITY: ASTROBIOLOGY, May 18 TOPIC: May 18 NASA will name a new director of its Astrobiology Institute. Astrobiology is an emerging interdisciplinary field that deals with exciting questions about life in the universe: its origin, evolution, distribution and destiny. TALENT: New director of NASA's Astrobiology Institute or Mr. Scott Hubbard, interim director of the Institute TIME: 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. EDT (new director) or 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. EDT (Hubbard) To book an interview call Laura Lewis at Ames Research Center 650/6042162, pager 650/317-0551, or Kathleen Burton at 650/604-1731. ***** The NASA Video File airs at noon, 3 p.m., 6 p.m., 9 p.m. and midnight Eastern Time. NASA Television is available on GE-2, transponder 9C at 85 degrees West longitude, with vertical polarization. Frequency is on 3880.0 megahertz, with audio on 6.8 megahertz. Refer general questions about the video file to NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC: Ray Castillo, 202/358-4555, or Pam Poe, 202/358-0373. During Space Shuttle missions, the full NASA TV schedule will continue to be posted at: For general information about NASA TV see: ***** Contract Awards Contract awards are posted to the NASA Acquisition Information Service Web site: ***** The NASA Daily News Summary is issued each business day at approximately 2 p.m. Eastern time. Members of the media who wish to subscribe or unsubscribe from this list, please send e-mail message to: ***** end of daily news summary