ISON vs the Sun

The ESA/NASA SOHO satellite watched as Comet ISON made its closest approach to the Sun on 28 November, at a distance of around 1.2 million kilometres from the Sun's visible surface. Did it survive? Early reports suggested that only the comet's tail continued to follow along ISON's orbit. Further observations will reveal if a chunk of the comet's nucleus survived.

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Bay Area

An urban sprawl engulfs San Francisco Bay in a sea of lights. The three bridges Oakland Bay Bridge, San Mateo Bridge and Dumbarton Bridge light up as straight lines connecting the coasts. From top right going clockwise freeways pass through Oakland, Hayward, Fremont, San Jose, Palo Alto, Redwood City, San Mateo and San Francisco.

The bright lights of the cities are themselves surrounded by natural parks. Passed the coastal Eastern Bay Regional Parks to the right, the cities of Pleasanton and Walnut Creek keep the dark wilderness at bay with their street lighting. To the left, aside from the Half Moon Bay Airport on the coast, blackness prevails: the  Pacific Ocean.

This image was taken on 23 December 2012 by an astronaut on the International Space Station. Circling Earth at an altitude of around 400 km astronauts witness the beauty of our planet from a unique vantage point. At night, human settlements can be seen as street lighting illuminates the sky. ESA developed an automatic camera tripod that compensates for the speed of the Space Station flying at 28 800 km/h to take sharper pictures at night.

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460th FSS sweeps five award categories in AFSPC A1 Awards

The 460th Force Support Squadron earned five awards from the Air Force Space Command 2013 A1 Awards.

The 460th FSS award-winning Airmen and organizations include the following:

- Outdoor Recreation Program of the Year
- Tech. Sgt. Sharleen M. Joacin, Force Support NCO of the Year, Installation Level
- Airman & Family Readiness Program of the Year
- Fitness and Sports Program of the Year
- Youth Program of the Year

The 460th FSS hard working and dedication led to their efforts being recognized at the major command level.

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Rosetta EQM

The Rosetta engineering model (EQM) is located in a clean room at ESA/ESOC, Darmstadt. It is a faithful, full-size replica – minus the huge solar arrays – of the actual Rosetta spacecraft, and is used for testing software and procedures before uploading to space.

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