Monday, September 21, 2015
Ever wonder how NASA and its affiliates generate publicity for their missions? They work hard at it. The link is to an article that details the Pluto flyby mission, which went off so successfully this past July. It turned out to be a multi-day media event that required plenty of logistics, press access to the scientists, conferences, individual interviews and accommodations for more than a thousand guests and staff. This might be "old-hat" for NASA but for the Applied Physics Laboratory at Johns Hopkins it was new and strange since APL is a closed facility handling sensitive government projects along with the Pluto mission. The brunt of the success depended on photos taking four hours to reach earth. Until those images popped onto the screen and in Instagram, no one could know for sure that the satellite had done its job. Talk about nerve-racking. Years of scientific work and months of publicity planning hung in the balance. As we now know, APL and NASA performed magnificently.