People send me stuff. A few weeks ago, I got an email inviting me to apply for NASA press credentials at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center for the launch of GOES-S advanced Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite-S on March 1st.
…A recent tweet from NOAA about the upcoming launch:
Can you feel it? The excitement, it's in the air. This was the moment #GOESEast launched into space on Nov. 19, 2016. Next week we get to live it again, as her sister satellite #GOESS (#GOES17) rockets into orbit from @NASAKennedy on March 1. Info: https://t.co/fiZrg7mgB5 pic.twitter.com/rTCjYhxMWQ
— NOAA Satellites (@NOAASatellites) February 20, 2018
More on the mission here: https://blogs.nasa.gov/goes/
At first, when I got the invitation to apply, I did a double take, and thought it must be a mistake, and then I thought, maybe somebody is playing a joke on me. Then after researching it, I realized it was a genuine opportunity. Apparently, all those times I’ve written about hurricanes, weather, and space technology outweighed all those times that I questioned NASA’s stance on climate change. Apparently, in addition to the traditional media channels, NASA is now making an outreach to social media, and not just the traditional print and electronic media. It sure beats NASA’s much maligned “muslim outreach“, so, I applied.
This is what I recently got back after applying. Shockingly, I was approved.
Sent: Friday, February 02, 2018 6:34 AM
Subject: GOES-S Social Selection
Congratulations! Recently you applied for social media credentials to attend the launch of the next generation geostationary weather satellite, GOES-S, at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. We are pleased to let you know that your application has been approved to attend the event. Liftoff is targeted for approximately 5:02 pm on March 1.
The event will take place over two days, targeted for no earlier than February 28 through March 1. Registration location and time will be communicated to you once you have applied for credentials in the online system.
Please read this entire e-mail carefully for instructions on securing your spot and planning your attendance.
During the event, you will be provided with the opportunity to:
- Tour facilities at Kennedy Space Center
- Meet and interact with the scientists and engineers that made GOES-S and its instruments a reality
- Hear from NOAA and NASA GOES-S experts during a special pre-launch briefing
- View and take photographs of the ULA Atlas V rocket on the launch pad
- Meet fellow space enthusiasts who are active on social media
- Meet members of NASA’s social media team
- View the launch of an ULA Atlas V rocket and the next generation geostationary weather satellite GOES-S.
So, there is also this part of the email, note the part is red that I have highlighted.
- You acknowledge your spot is for one person only (you) and is non-transferrable. We cannot accommodate guests.
- You acknowledge you are at least 18 years old and a U.S. citizen.
- You intend to travel to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center and attend the two-day event in person. You are responsible for your own expenses for travel, lodging, local transportation, food and other amenities. You also are responsible for your transportation to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.
- You plan to attend the two-day event. Check-in is required on the first day of the event to receive your badge. If you do not check in on the first day of the event, you will forfeit your GOES-S Social registration for the remainder of the event. You must plan to attend all planned activities if you want to participate.
- VERY IMPORTANT: To be admitted, you are required to provide TWO unexpired forms of government-issued identification; one must be a photo ID that matches the name provided on the registration. Those without two forms of required identification will NOT be admitted.
Yep, just like the big guys at NYT and CNN, I’m expected to pay my own way. That’s traditional and not unreasonable, except that maybe NASA doesn’t realize that social media reporters often have no budget at all for such things.
And that’s why I’m writing today. Here’s a chance for WUWT to do something that is on par with those traditional print and electronic media folks who up until now, had a monopoly on “hands on reporting” at KSC. I’ve completed all of the requirements, and I’m just waiting for NASA to give me the location to arrive at. I’m hoping readers can chip in to help with costs.
Costs will be about $600 for airfare, about $600 for hotels (since I have to book for the entire launch window, because launch times often get delayed), a rental car at about $300, and probably another $250 for meals and expenses like parking at my departure airport. It adds up to about $2000. I can put it all on a credit card, but I’d really hope to avoid acquiring debt to embrace this opportunity. Here is the schedule: https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/noaas-goes-s-briefings-and-events
Anything you can chip in will help. My sincere thanks in advance. – Anthony
GOAL MET. THANKS TO EVERYONE !!!
I got my final instructions from NASA this morning, it’s a GO!
My sincerest thanks to everybody who chipped in, the goal was met and even exceeded a bit.
I’ll have lots of photos to share, and lots of questions to ask. Feel free to pose questions in comments below. – Anthony