This past weekend I was lucky enough to attend the open house at JPL (part of CalTech and NASA). In so many words, I got to see a lot of stuff that goes into space and the stuff that makes those things go into space.
I am beyond excited about all of the things I saw and so I am going to split this up into two posts!
My first stop was at Mission Control. You know, MISSION CONTROL. Okay, actually it was Deep Space Operations. They communicate with satellites and other vehicles that have been launched into space. Neat fact: While this makes total sense, they need to keep old equipment around to talk to the old technology that launched years ago.
A bunch of the rovers were on display as a big focus of JPL is robotics.
This little guy is to scale!
These little kids are to scale and had to say, “Rover, rover, come on over!”
Before entering the Spacecraft Assembly Facility, you watched a cool video that demoed the series of parts it takes to land a Mars rover safe and sound. Then you got to walk in and see it in the largest “clean room” on campus.
The Spacecraft Fabrication Facility was certainly the largest shop I had ever been in – but they had some great “spare” parts on display and crazy vending machines.
P.S. Safety first!! (Hello awesome safety sign!)