2016 Postal Stamps Honor NASA’s New Planetary Discoveries

Posted: Jan 2 2016, 1:57pm CST | by , Updated: Jan 2 2016, 2:00pm CST, in News | Latest Science News


2016 Postal Stamps Honor NASA’s New Planetary Discoveries
Pluto Explored! In 2006, NASA placed a 29-cent 1991 ‘Pluto: Not Yet Explored’ stamp in the New Horizons spacecraft. In 2015 the spacecraft carried the stamp on its history-making mission to Pluto and beyond. With this stamp, the Postal Service recognizes the first reconnaissance of Pluto in 2015 by NASA’s New Horizon mission. The souvenir sheet of four stamps contains two new stamps appearing twice. Credits: USPS/Antonio Alcalá © 2016 USPS
  • Postage Stamps for 2016 honor NASA’s New Planetary Discoveries

A series of postage stamps for the year 2016 are honoring NASA’s new planetary discoveries.

The New Year’s stamps that highlight NASA’s planetary drive are a delight to behold. They are actually a different version of a popular Pluto stamp. NASA’s flyby for the year 2015 was the main occasion that was being commemorated on these colorful paper stickers for snail mail. 

“U.S. Postal stamps express the enthusiasm and personality of senders to favorite themes in our society. From Mercury to Neptune, Pluto and Star Trek, it’s exciting to see that planetary science and space exploration are being celebrated in these new 2016 stamps,” said John Grunsfeld, NASA’s associate administrator for science in Washington.

“On behalf of NASA scientists across the nation, we’re honored that the U.S. Postal Service has chosen to highlight NASA’s New Horizons and 50 years of planetary exploration with these iconic images.”

An image of Pluto and a pic of the New Horizons spacecraft are to be seen on the stamps. Philatelists everywhere are on the prowl to buy this collector’s item in order to complete the glory of their stamp albums. 

Other pictures depicted on the series of stamps include the original moon mission and half a century of Star Trek. The favorite themes of enthusiasts ranging from the planet Mercury to Neptune and other planets within our Solar System are explored in these traditional means of sending mail that is still in vogue despite email and other means of modern communication.

These stamps are meant to laud NASA as well as the brave and intrepid astronauts who dare to venture where no man has gone before. The trips into outer space prove that the final frontier may just be a beginning in the colonization of the universe.

“The New Horizons project is proud to have such an important honor from the U.S. Postal Service,” said Alan Stern, New Horizons principal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado.

“Since the early 1990s the old, ‘Pluto Not Explored’ stamp served as a rallying cry for many who wanted to mount this historic mission of space exploration. Now that NASA’s New Horizons has accomplished that goal, it’s a wonderful feeling to see these new stamps join others commemorating first explorations of the planets.”

The historical trip of the spacecraft of NASA to Pluto was especially a celebratory occasion. It seems that it is true that we will not cease to explore and the end of all our exploration will be to arrive at a sort of déjà vu moment of self-growth and self-recognition.

The NASA admin is thankful to the US Postal Service for being so kind as to applaud its discovery drive via these postal stamps. Most of the stamps are colorful and a beautiful series of images that arouse the imagination.   

The planets range from Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune all the way to Pluto. They are arranged on a postage stamps panel that is black in background.

This black background represents the mysterious nature of outer space with its condition of a complete and utterly empty vacuum.

Then the highly interesting terrain and surface features of the various planets are shown in all their infinite depth and the whole canvas of images are somehow mystical in their scope.

Space is a source of adventurism and exploration for the male ego. It remains the one area that has elements of the unknown in our immediate settings.

While the earth has been mapped and labeled to death, outer space along with its barren planets are food for the curious mind which refuses to be satisfied with the familiar terrain alone.

“Our stamps articulate the American experience through miniature works of art,” said Acting Stamp Services Director Mary-Anne Penner.

“Our diverse stamp topics for 2016 are sure to appeal to everyone, and with the New Year just around the corner, now is a perfect time to get started in stamp collecting. It’s an educational hobby the entire family can enjoy.”

The “Pluto Explored!” stamps will be dedicated in late May of 2016 at the World Stamp Show in New York.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
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