On the Radar: Jupiter mission, jobs for vets, Tiger's return
LEGO mini-statues of the mythological god Jupiter, left, his wife Juno, and the astronomer Galileo will be aboard the Mission Juno satellite.
August 5th, 2011
06:02 AM ET

On the Radar: Jupiter mission, jobs for vets, Tiger's return

Three things you need to know today.

Jupiter mission: NASA plans to launch its Mission Juno satellite on Friday to begin a five-year, 400-million-mile journey to Jupiter that the space agency hopes will help reveal how our solar system was formed.

Liftoff is scheduled for 11:34 a.m. ET.

Mission Juno will offer unprecedented insight into the formation of our solar system by investigating what lies underneath Jupiter's atmosphere, astronomers said at Kennedy Space Center. Jupiter is known for its violent storms and gaseous atmosphere.

Scott Bolton, principal investigator for the mission, said Jupiter - which is 1,300 times larger than Earth - holds a key to understanding the solar system because it's believed to be the first planet to have formed after the sun.

While this is not a manned mission, the satellite will carry a crew of three LEGO figures, 1.5-inch-tall likenesses of Galileo Galilei, the Roman god Jupiter and his wife Juno.

Galileo is credited with several discoveries about Jupiter, including finding four of its moons. The LEGO figurine will carry a telescope to salute this.

The mythological Jupiter was a mischief-maker who surrounded himself in clouds. Juno was able to see through those clouds to see what her husband was up to. The LEGO Juno will carry a magnifying glass on the mission while Jupiter carries a lightning bolt.

LEGO is partnering with NASA to promote children's interest in science, math, engineering and technology.

Jobs for vets: President Barack Obama will outline a new initiative Friday that aims to  help former members of the military find private sector jobs, part of a renewed job creation effort focusing on  unemployed veterans.

In a speech at the Washington Navy Yard, the president is expected to lay out a series of reforms that his administration is pledging will better prepare service members for the civilian work force and encourage employers to hire recent veterans.

Among the president's proposals will be a "Returning Heroes and Wounded Warrior Tax Credit," which would provide businesses that hire veterans a tax break, varying in size depending on how long the newly hired veteran has been unemployed and whether he or she has a disability.

At minimum in the president's proposal includes a $2,400 credit for hiring a short-term unemployed veteran while a $9,600 credit would be available for hiring a long-term unemployed and disabled veteran.

Tiger's comeback: Tiger Woods begins the second round of his comeback after three months off from golf due to injury. After one round of the World Golf Championships Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio, Woods is six strokes behind leader Adam Scott.

Sports Illustrated senior writer Gary Van Sickle looks at what Woods showed us in shooting a first-round, two under par 68.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Golf • Jupiter • Military • On the Radar • Politics • Space • Sports • Tiger Woods
soundoff (147 Responses)
  1. Mr. Bombastic

    Its not a magnifying Glass its a Frying Pan...You ever play with legos as a kid. Also might wanna bone up on your Roman Mythology....

    August 5, 2011 at 7:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Tony Baloney

      LOL...before I read the story, I was saying to myself...two 'gods' and a modern housewife...hahaha

      August 5, 2011 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
    • C. Smith

      I don't know, the description sounds pretty accurate to me. Jupiter, aka Zeus, may have been the chief of the gods, father of many of them, and the most powerful (after killing Chronos at least), but he also got into a LOT of mischief.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:22 am | Report abuse |
  2. jjtheduhplane

    Wonder why are economy sucks. What we should cut

    August 5, 2011 at 7:17 am | Report abuse |
  3. John

    Getting a head start on the new landfills, I see.

    August 5, 2011 at 7:18 am | Report abuse |
  4. Pete

    How much did LEGO pay? Every gram of extra mass costs a lot of energy for a 400-million-mile journey.

    August 5, 2011 at 7:25 am | Report abuse |
  5. Josh

    What's NASA fascination with LEGO's? They sent LEGOs to Mars. Part of the shuttles' last replenishment cargo to the ISS, was LEGO's. Now, LEGO's to Jupiter?

    August 5, 2011 at 7:34 am | Report abuse |
    • C. Smith

      The fascination is that most of us played with LEGOs as children. It's one of the signs that you may be an engineer: a complete fascination with LEGOs.
      I'm serious, in several engineering classes in college, the teacher brought in LEGOs to demonstrate principles. They're wonderful toys!

      August 5, 2011 at 8:24 am | Report abuse |
  6. joe

    The juuus have their very own planet. Its not fair. I bet all the best juice is there too. Im gonna start a protest.

    August 5, 2011 at 7:38 am | Report abuse |
    • C. Smith

      Is this the start of History of the World Part II? JEWS IN SPACE Space space (echo voice).
      Now we just need Hitler on Ice! Oh, wait, we did that already. 🙂

      August 5, 2011 at 8:25 am | Report abuse |
  7. chibidw

    Where's the LEGO Boba Fett?

    August 5, 2011 at 7:39 am | Report abuse |
  8. Gabor47

    That's why the shuttle program ended, there is no true and realistic goal out there. The Moon was the only reasonably available space object available to mankind with the currently existing technology to send humans. Even that was marginal, but at least it was possible. The currently existing chemical propulsion makes any real interplanetary travel practically impossible (not literally impossible, only practically). It takes years to get to the Jupiter. It took over a decade to build the ISS and it is in Earth orbit, a couple of hundred miles from the surface. Compare that with 483 million miles where the Jupiter is (on the average). Landing is not possible, Jupiter is a gas giant, no real land (only the moons). NASA is coughing blood to justify its existence. Now, nearly everything is for the alleged reason to "find out how the solar system was born". Frankly, who cares? Please, don't get me wrong, I am not against real space research, but mankind's technology just not there yet where it would be possible. The Space Shuttle was able to go 200-400 miles high. 483 million? Forget it. Yet, even the space shuttle would be tiny and grossly insufficient to carry humans to Jupiter (or even to much closer, such as Mars). For now we are stuck on LEO (low earth orbit). Some day, some genius invents a different propulsion, with much higher speed and power, but until then, expect nothing more than LEGO type significance.

    August 5, 2011 at 7:48 am | Report abuse |
    • C. Smith

      Actually, NEOs are a very real goal, both for study and technological development. Then, once the VASIMR plasma rockets are finished testing, we can use them to get to Mars in a fraction of the time it currently takes. The Moon was just a stepping stone, but the Shuttle program did fail it's primary mission of being a cheap, 100% reusable method of accessing space.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:27 am | Report abuse |
  9. Who

    Gee, I didn't know that this coutry had the money to send plastic building blocks and a telescope to Jupiter, nor did I think that Veterans were the ONLY ones out of work in this country, nor have the ability to give tax breaks to companies that pocket the money and create nothing (like the Bush Tax Cuts). I guess the big crisis over the debt ceiling was just a bad dream!

    August 5, 2011 at 7:55 am | Report abuse |
    • UFOPilot

      First off they're aluminum, not plastic, and the Lego company footed the bill to have their figures taken along.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:05 am | Report abuse |
  10. Bill

    Never mind the darn Legos! That's there to distract you people who enjoy watching shiny things!

    While I applaud the President for trying to encourage employment veterans (of which I am one), he's trying to do so with tax credits. Tax credits, for you easily distracted types, means that the government would take in LESS money in taxes. Didn't we just get past a HUGE debate on passing a spending/borrowing extension, which includes lowering the number of things we spend money on......AND included ZERO tax increases, to help raise more money?

    And now the Prez is trying to raise less?? Employ veterans (and everyone else), YES. Do it by screwing up the economy even more than it already is, NO!!!

    You may now go back to your shiny things, and Legos.

    August 5, 2011 at 7:55 am | Report abuse |
  11. John

    No wonder they cut NASA. Once again, whwew are the adults in this country!

    August 5, 2011 at 7:57 am | Report abuse |
    • CB

      FYI, since you make comments before research or reading.....
      NASA got an increase in funding.
      That would be the OPPOSITE of a cut.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:58 am | Report abuse |
  12. John

    This country is soooooo down the drain.

    August 5, 2011 at 7:59 am | Report abuse |
  13. John B

    I'm going to go out on a limb and say that NASA sends legos for one reason. They show our imagination.

    August 5, 2011 at 8:16 am | Report abuse |
  14. Who

    @ UFO Pilot: The fuel, and Mission Control and the the vehicle used is FAR more than LEGO can pay for, and is paid for by the taxpayers. You are now free to go back to Area 51.

    August 5, 2011 at 8:16 am | Report abuse |
  15. Cody

    All these people complaining about NASA's budget, while NASA's budget makes up less than one half of one percent of federal spending. And that includes all the space shuttles, our work on the ISS, the Hubble telescope, tons of unmanned missions to dozens of planets and moons... And for crying out loud, the article plainly states that LEGO are partnering with NASA. In other words, LEGO are paying for it in order to encourage more kids to get into STEM fields. What fault can you possibly find with educating children while simultaneously making awesome discoveries about the universe for a tiny fraction of our budget?

    August 5, 2011 at 8:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Þorsteinn Halldórsson


      August 5, 2011 at 8:31 am | Report abuse |
    • Brad

      Cody, your asking people to think and understand, that is a big no no on these forums. Most people would rather believe everything was created in 6 days, makes life simpler for them.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:31 am | Report abuse |
    • The Jackdaw

      You are right about that. I think it is great that NASA and our government are doing more to try and get children interested in science.

      Brad is right too though. Most people do not want to think and would rather throw stones at things they dont get. Things like science and education.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:40 am | Report abuse |
    • r0n77

      Agreed. Besides, we have to realize that the global economic benefits of NASA outweigh the investment into space exploration probably ten fold. NASA employs the best and most creative engineers and scientists in the world. Thousands of our every day products are a result of technology invented by NASA scientists.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:55 am | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Every step that science takes forward is a step away from the Dark Ages they want us to return to.

      Anytime you mention an exploration mission geared at determining the origin of the universe, you rile the religiously insane.

      August 5, 2011 at 8:59 am | Report abuse |
    • The Jackdaw

      r0n77, you are right about that. Those who say NASA is a waste of time drive me crazy. We have at least doubled every dollar we have put into NASA by their R&D programs alone. That is discounting the weight of the actual science that they have gathered from space. I hate ignorant nay-sayers.

      August 5, 2011 at 9:01 am | Report abuse |
    • WiserThanEwe

      Open the pod bay doors, Hal!
      I'm sorry, Juno, I can't do that.

      After all these years, we've finally learned that the monolyth is a Lego.

      August 5, 2011 at 9:20 am | Report abuse |
    • WiserThanEwe

      Or, GASP, that all LEGOs are little monolyths. This is starting to look a little sinister. LEGO blocks have taken over the US Space Agency.

      August 5, 2011 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
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