TCS Daily


Space Quiz

By Kenneth Silber - January 3, 2003 12:00 AM

Test your knowledge of space policy, science and technology with the following questions. The answers are at bottom.

1. Galileo is the name of:
A. A spacecraft now in the final phases of its mission to explore Jupiter and its moons
B. A planned European Union satellite network, which the Pentagon is concerned might interfere with the U.S. Global Positioning System
C. A brilliant Italian scientist who lived from 1564 to 1642
D. All of the above

2. Which Founding Father anticipated space exploration, writing that posterity may learn to deprive large Masses of their Gravity, and give them absolute Levity, for the sake of very easy transport?
A. Thomas Jefferson
B. Benjamin Franklin
C. Alexander Hamilton
D. Tom Paine

3. What country has conducted four launches of an unmanned space capsule since late 1999 in preparation for an expected manned flight? A. Japan
B. France
C. China
D. India

4. NASAs share of the federal budget, which was 4.4 percent in 1966, has hovered at what levels since the mid-1970s?
A. Between 2.5 and 3 percent
B. Between 4.0 and 4.5 percent
C. Near 1.5 percent
D. Below 1 percent

5. Which U.S. president, shortly before leaving office, said the following about NASA: And I would like to see their budget increase now, because I think that they have proved, after years and years of flat budgets, that they have squeezed a lot of blood out of this turnip?
A. Ronald Reagan
B. John F. Kennedy
C. George H.W. Bush
D. Bill Clinton

6. The most advanced commercial imaging satellites currently in orbit have a resolution of (i.e., the ability to detect objects as small as):
A. One meter
B. Twelve feet
C. Ten meters
D. One micron

7. The X-Prize is a competition that offers $10 million for:
A. Confirmation of a radio message originating from an extraterrestrial intelligence
B. Private development and launching of a human-rated rocket to a specified altitude
C. Innovative developments in X-ray astronomy
D. Innovative use of X-rays in dentistry

8. Potential energy sources proposed as objectives for space exploration include:
A. Helium-3 from the moon for use in nuclear-fusion reactors
B. Deuterium from Mars for use in fusion or modified fission reactors
C. Solar energy beamed from arrays in Earth orbit or on the moon
D. All of the above

9. The Torino Scale is used to:
A. Assess the risks of collisions with asteroids and comets
B. Calculate the velocity of an object entering a black hole
C. Measure the intensity of tornadoes and other storms
D. Monitor Canadian public opinion about space exploration

10. The James Webb Space Telescope, planned successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, is named after:
A. The inventor of the steam engine
B. A former secretary of the Navy
C. A former NASA administrator
D. The star of the original Dragnet TV series

11. Triana, an Earth-observing spacecraft first conceived by then-Vice President Al Gore, was subsequently:
A. Destroyed in a launch accident over Florida
B. Postponed during the George W. Bush administration and stored in an aluminum box
C. Successfully deployed to deep space
D. None of the above

Answers 1-D, 2-B, 3-C, 4-D, 5-D, 6-A, 7-B, 8-D, 9-A, 10-C, 11-B
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