Author Topic: The Official Space Exploration Thread  (Read 122964 times)

Offline Matt_Fury

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #300 on: July 10, 2006, 12:28 AM »
Discovery was going to come back to Earth anyway....the announcement was that the crew will be aboard as well.   ;)
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Offline Nicklab

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #301 on: July 10, 2006, 12:34 AM »
The photography of the past two missions really has been spectacular.  I got a chance to watch some of the spacewalk live on Friday and it's amazing to watch.  The astronauts have helmet mounted cameras that NASA was switching onto their channel live.  In fact, if you have Direct TV you can actually watch a lot of the Shuttle mission video live.  It's on channel 376.
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Offline DSJ™

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #302 on: July 10, 2006, 01:10 AM »
Oh yes, awesome pictures & videos. I have been following the online NASA feed.  :)

I found these on a space forum, these are so ******* cool.  8)

Tracking ISS /STS-121 Discovery

GoogleSatTrack 2 - STS-121 Special Edition

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #303 on: July 10, 2006, 08:47 AM »


GoogleSatTrack 2 - STS-121 Special Edition

That is the balls.

I had no idea how fast the shuttle traveled.  I've been watching it for the past 20 minutes or so while doing other stuff (yeah right) and in that time it's zipped from somewhere in the western Ukraine to over Papau New Guinnea now.  When it hit the NW corner of China I decided to send a link to some friends, and in the time it took me to write and address the email it was already zooming into Hong Kong!!!
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Offline Darth Slothus

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #304 on: July 10, 2006, 11:06 AM »
I hear from somewhere (can't remember) the shuttel IS landing for sure at Edwards this time. Awesome, 2 landings inside of a year= great. If it really is true then this time I'll have to go outside and see the landing instead of being 'woke-up' by it like a lot of the SC :P.

Offline Nicklab

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #305 on: July 10, 2006, 12:33 PM »


GoogleSatTrack 2 - STS-121 Special Edition

That is the balls.

I had no idea how fast the shuttle traveled. 

It really is amazing how fast the thing moves.  It clocks in at around 17,000 miles an hour.  At that speed it takes roughly 90 minutes for the shuttle to complete a full orbit.  And since they're docked with the space station they're in an even higher orbit than normal.
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Offline Darth Slothus

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #306 on: July 10, 2006, 01:12 PM »
I remember years ago when I was living in Texas working for the Gov't, our boss told us the space shuttle was entering the atmoshpere in route to Florida for a landing. It was early, probably between 2-5 AM sometime and it was a clear night with no moon and plenty of stars. We watched it enter the atmosphere. Wow! it looked liked a comet! I thought about going inside to wake up my wife and kids to see it but decided I would miss it myself because it went so freaking fast across the horizon. It went from one horizon to the other Fast! 8) :o

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #307 on: July 10, 2006, 08:55 PM »


GoogleSatTrack 2 - STS-121 Special Edition

That is the balls.

I had no idea how fast the shuttle traveled.  I've been watching it for the past 20 minutes or so while doing other stuff (yeah right) and in that time it's zipped from somewhere in the western Ukraine to over Papau New Guinnea now.  When it hit the NW corner of China I decided to send a link to some friends, and in the time it took me to write and address the email it was already zooming into Hong Kong!!!

I've been watching the shuttle on and off all day.  As I watched it come into the States just now, I called my son (5) and his neighbor friend (4) in from the yard to explain what it was and where it was. They were fascinated, and when it got into Ohio, I pointed out that it was about to pass over Tennessee.  Both boys ran back out into the front yard and looked up at the sky waving and screaming "helloooooooo spacemeeennnnnnn!!!!!"
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Offline DSJ™

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #308 on: July 12, 2006, 12:29 AM »
Ha, that's great Richard.  8)

I showed a few people at work that link & you should hear them... but it was just over there a minute ago!  ;D

Time to play catch me up on the last few days.



STS-121 spacewalker Michael Fossum totes a new Trailing Umbilical System (TUS) at the end of the ISS robotic arm during a July 10, 2006 spacewalk to replace a faulty station cable reel. The dark cavity seen in the ISS truss above Fossum is where he installed the new unit. Credit: NASA TV.



STS-121 spacewalkers Piers Sellers (left in striped spacesuit) and Michael Fossum installed a pump module on a spare parts platform outside the ISS on July 10, 2006. Credit: NASA TV.

Astronaut to NASA: Can't fix it, duct it?

Ha, duct tape. That brings back memories of Apollo 13 when the NASA engineers came up with a makeshift canister for the CO2 level & Apollo 17 when they had to repair the flap on one of the rover's fenders.  8)

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #309 on: July 12, 2006, 09:36 PM »
Astronauts spackle in space: Oops! Spatula floats away from spacewalker



Shuttle astronaut Piers Sellers (left) records heat shield repair tests from his perch on the ISS robotic arm during a July 12, 2006 spacewalk in the Discovery shuttle's payload bay. At right, spacewalker Michael Fossum shades the samples for the infrared camera video session. Credit: NASA TV.



This view, seen from cameras mounted to the helmet of STS-121 spacewalker Michael Fossum, show the astronaut as he adds NOAX repair substance to an intentionally damaged sample of reinforced carbon carbon heat shield material. Credit: NASA TV.



This panel has been smeared with NOAX, a sealant that resembles grey peanut butter. Credit: NASA TV.

Offline Darth_Anton

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #310 on: July 13, 2006, 11:28 PM »
I got o hit the Smithsonian Air and Space museum today. What a rush. Nothing like seeing the real things; two of the Mercury capsules and Apollo 11.
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Offline Tracy

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #311 on: July 14, 2006, 06:48 AM »
One of my favorite memories of living in DC was seeing Jim Lovell at the Air & Space Museum.  He gave an amazing lecture about the Apollo 13 mission complete with photographs and video taken by the crew.   
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Offline DSJ™

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #312 on: July 14, 2006, 11:01 PM »
Wow, that must have been a great lecture Tracy.  8)

I would love to check out the Air & Space Museum, been thinking about it for years... someday.  :)

Latest updates:



The space shuttle Discovery as it appears docked at the International Space Station (ISS) during NASA's STS-121 mission in July 2006. Credit: NASA TV.



The International Space Station transfered the Leonardo module to the Discovery shuttle's cargo bay today, July 14, 2006. Credit: NASA TV.



The STS-121 crewmembers gather for an in-flight crew photo in the Destiny laboratory of the International Space Station. From the left (bottom) are astronauts Stephanie D. Wilson, mission specialist; Steven W. Lindsey, commander; and Lisa M. Nowak, mission specialist. From the left (top) are astronauts Piers J. Sellers, Michael E. Credit: NASA.



Glitches with the robotic arm aboard the International Space Station delayed micrometeorite impact inspections of Discovery's port wing on July 14, 2006. Credit: NASA.



This diagram depicts Discovery's auxiliary power unit (APU) system, with two areas currently under study highlighted. Credit: NASA.

HOUSTON – NASA officials are confident that a potential fuel leak in a power unit aboard the space shuttle Discovery, if unchanged, will not hinder the spacecraft’s Monday landing, a top mission manager said Friday.

John Shannon, NASA’s deputy shuttle program manager, said that in worst case scenario – in which fuel is leaking and not harmless nitrogen, something that is not yet certain – one of Discovery’s three auxiliary power units (APUs) may be leaking a total of about six drops an hour, or about 100,000 times below the fire hazard limit.

In other space news:



HOUSTON – A trio of astronauts and one entrepreneur are counting the days remaining before they rocket towards the International Space Station (ISS).

The three-astronaut crew of ISS Expedition 14 and Japanese businessman Daisuke Enomoto are set to launch toward the space station in the upcoming months, some riding a Russian Soyuz into orbit in September while one NASA spaceflyer waits for a December shuttle launch.

And for thre record books:



Fournier pictured with the small pressurised spacecraft that will protect him against UV rays and the tremendous cold. Totally controlled from earth, it contains the necessary oxygen, instruments of measurement and control, as well as flight data recording instruments including sound and image recording. Image Credit: Big Jump.

Frenchman Michel Fournier is readying himself and equipment to attempt a record-setting free fall from the stratosphere.

Dubbed "The Big Jump", Fournier is eyeing next month for his supersonic free fall from about 130,000 feet (40 kilometers)—roughly 25 miles above the Earth. The dive from a balloon-carried gondola is slated to take place above the plains of Saskatchewan, Canada.

The Jump equipment is principally composed of a huge Russian-supplied stratospheric balloon and the specially crafted gondola. To ascend to jump height will take some 3 hours. The gondola shelters Fournier during ascent. It also is loaded with flight instruments: navigation equipment, oxygen bottles, radio gear, video recorders and Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite tracking device.

If successful, Fournier will beat four world parachutist’s records from the border of space:

Altitude record for freefall.
Altitude record for human balloon flight.
Time record for longest freefall.
Speed record for fastest freefall—breaking the sound barrier in the process.

Now that freefall would be something to see!  :o  8)

Offline DSJ™

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #313 on: July 15, 2006, 09:12 PM »


A video camera aboard the space shuttle Discovery shows the International Space Station hovering above a blue Earth after the orbiter undocked from the orbital lab on July 15, 2006. Credit: NASA TV.



Image above: View of the International Space Station from the Space Shuttle Discovery after undocking. Photo Credit: NASA

Discovery remains on track for a scheduled touch down at Kennedy Space Center, Fla., at 9:14 a.m. Monday.  8)

Offline DSJ™

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Re: The Official Space Exploration Thread
« Reply #314 on: July 16, 2006, 07:35 PM »
From Nasa.gov

Discovery Cleared for Landing; First Attempt Monday

The Mission Control Center told the STS-121 crew Sunday morning that engineers have cleared Space Shuttle Discovery for landing after completing a review of post-docking inspection data.

The crew members received the word while eating lunch. They prepared Sunday for landing by stowing items, testing engines and checking out shuttle systems.

The astronauts took a break from their work to talk to reporters with CNN, CBS, ABC, NBC and the Fox News Channel.

Landing is set for 9:14 a.m. EDT Monday at the Kennedy Space Center, Fla. The crew is scheduled to fire the shuttle’s engines at 8:07 a.m. to begin Discovery’s descent to Florida.

A second landing opportunity in Florida also is available for Monday. The crew would fire the engines at 9:43 a.m. for a landing at 10:50 a.m. Weather forecasts call for a chance of showers at the landing site. Flight controllers do not plan to consider any landing site other than Florida on Monday.

Discovery delivered supplies, equipment and a new Expedition 13 crew member to the International Space Station. During three spacewalks, the crew performed maintenance on the station’s mobile transporter and tested orbiter heat shield repair techniques.

I won't be able to see the landing till I get home & check online. If nothing delays the landing, Godspeed to Discovery & her crew.  :)