One small step for NASA

NASA launches Instagram account.

One small step for NASA, one large leap for Instagram users.

NASA unleashed its official profile on the Facebook owned photo/video sharing social site.

It does so with much hype, promising to take its users on an out of this world journey with pictures of earth and yonder.

This is a move, which is readily welcome, having already dived into Twitter, at about 4.8 million followers. The launch was strategically timed to go with Friday nights LADEE robotic probe (pronounced LA-dee) lift off.

One small step for NASAv

NASA reports that the LADEE will orbit the moon in order to collect info on the structure and composition of the moons atmosphere. This will be to determine if dust is being propelled into its astral sky.

Earth's_Moon

One small step for NASAvj

The pricy launch comes at a time when the US government budget is still suffering the after effects of the economic crisis. The agency will thus have to work harder to appeal to a wider public, not to mention prove its relevance.

On its launch day, NASA uploaded some real time images from the launch and some historic moon photos. On the first day, focus was on the launch of LADEE. NASA’s social media manager, John Yembrick, said, “That’s the theme for the day – Instagram moon day.”

Yembrick said, “We’re trying to evolve,”. He goes on to say, “We’ve been on Instagram for a while, but I wish we were on it sooner. Sometimes the government doesn’t move as fast, but I think it’s a great platform for us as we evolve and are trying to reach a different demographic and audience.”

NASA also has a presence on YouTube, Foursquare, and Reddit, among other platforms.

 Featured image courtesy of Flickr, NASA Goddard Photo and Video.