Engineering

113: Belt and suspenders spacecraft with Julie Webster

Cassini ’s spacecraft operations team manager,  Julie Webster , stops by the show to reflect on Cassini. We chat about the time Cassini dove through Titan’s atmosphere, how Julie monitored thousands of channels of telemetry at once, and how she’s happy that she doesn’t have to spend her time thinking through worst-case scenarios (or “awfulizing”) now that the spacecraft is no more.

Cassini’s spacecraft operations team manager, Julie Webster, stops by the show to reflect on Cassini. We chat about the time Cassini dove through Titan’s atmosphere, how Julie monitored thousands of channels of telemetry at once, and how she’s happy that she doesn’t have to spend her time thinking through worst-case scenarios (or “awfulizing”) now that the spacecraft is no more.

Julie's view of her desktop while she was monitoring Cassini's telemetry.  Credit: Julie Webster

Julie's view of her desktop while she was monitoring Cassini's telemetry.

Credit: Julie Webster

Cassini's loss of signal, as described by Julie on the show.  Credit: Julie Webster

Cassini's loss of signal, as described by Julie on the show.

Credit: Julie Webster

Episode 29: Keeping the James Webb Space Telescope cool with Dr. Stone

The James Webb Space Telescope is the biggest astronomy project in the world right now. It’s an amazingly complex robot, and some of its sensors need to be kept cool.  Dr Kris Stone  talks about the cooling system, and how it will be tested during the longest continuous test ever conducted at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

The James Webb Space Telescope is the biggest astronomy project in the world right now. It’s an amazingly complex robot, and some of its sensors need to be kept cool. Dr Kris Stone talks about the cooling system, and how it will be tested during the longest continuous test ever conducted at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Episode 28: Building experiments for the International Space Station with Dr. White

Dr. Lauren White  talks about designing and building instruments for the International Space Station (ISS), including  Orbiting Carbon Observatory 3  and  OPALS , a new communication system. She shares a secret about designing instruments for the outside of the space station, and also talks about being the first American to command a laser on the ISS.  Image: "International Space Station after undocking of STS-132" by NASA/Crew of STS-132  .

Dr. Lauren White talks about designing and building instruments for the International Space Station (ISS), including Orbiting Carbon Observatory 3 and OPALS, a new communication system. She shares a secret about designing instruments for the outside of the space station, and also talks about being the first American to command a laser on the ISS. Image: "International Space Station after undocking of STS-132" by NASA/Crew of STS-132.