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Signed, sealed but not delivered: LightSail 2 awaits ship date

20 Mar 2017, 11:00 UTC
Signed, sealed but not delivered: LightSail 2 awaits ship date The Planetary Society

Last week at The Planetary Society's headquarters in Pasadena, Bill Nye listened intently as engineers recapped all the changes they've made to the organization's LightSail 2 spacecraft. Nye has been busy lately. A new documentary film on his life, "Bill Nye: Science Guy," recently debuted at South by Southwest. His new Netflix show, "Bill Nye Saves the World," comes out next month. And he's also been reaching out to the Trump administration with ideas for America's space program. Despite all this, Nye spent a day in a conference room for LightSail 2's pre-ship review, a common space mission milestone where engineers and program managers decide whether a spacecraft is ready to be handed off for final integration and launch. These meetings sometimes wander deep into the technical weeds, but Nye, ever the bridge between engineering-speak and everyday language, occasionally stopped the conversation to ask for further clarification.

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