Shuttle News: September 2010 Archives

Photos of the Day: Sept 21, Wall Street Journal

"Photographers gathered around the space shuttle Discovery, which was sitting on a launch pad in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Tuesday. Discovery is set to lift off Nov. 1 for the International Space Station. Endeavour will follow in February, wrapping up 30 years of shuttle flight."

Bittersweet time as space shuttle program winds down, Huntsville Times

"This is a bittersweet moment for the shuttle team at Marshall as we wind down the shuttle program," said Steve Cash, manager of the Shuttle Propulsion Office at Marshall. "We rolled out the last external tank at Michoud Monday morning and, on Tuesday, we watched shuttle Discovery roll out to the launch pad at Kennedy for the last time."

As shuttle program nears its end, NASA gives employees a personal view

"Large groups from the same work site would travel together to have group photos taken in front of Discovery. Some groups would wear matching shirts while others held signs for the photos. Beth and Jesse Palma, who tied the knot in April, wore their wedding attire for the occasion. "We wanted something different than a standard wedding photo," said Jesse Palma, 27. He and his wife have worked for the contractor United Space Alliance at the Kennedy Space Center since 2008. Beth Palma, 26, works at the launch pad and Jesse works at the orbital processing facility."

Space Shuttle Discovery is Hoisted and Mated to the External Fuel Tank, Ken Kremer for SpaceRef

"Space Shuttle Discovery was hoisted and "hard mated" to her fuel tank and twin rocket boosters for the final time on Saturday (Sept. 11), before she is retired from active duty service following her last scheduled flight - the STS 133 mission to the International Space Station (ISS)."

Marc's note: Ken's report includes some great photographs of the event.

Space Shuttle Discovery Makes Journey from Orbiter Processing Facility to the Vehicle Assembly Building, Ken Kremer

"Space Shuttle Discovery was moved a few hundred yards from her processing hanger at the Kennedy Space Center to the Vehicle Assembly Building where she will be joined to the giant orange external fuel tank (ET) and twin solid rocket boosters (SRB) which will power the orbiter for her final trip to space. The trip was delayed a day by the water main break which shut down KSC on Wednesday (Sep 8). "

Murals Commemorate Space Shuttle Legacy, Ken Kremer

"Huge murals of artwork commemorating three decades of historic explorations and scientific achievements by all five of America's Space Shuttle Orbiters - Columbia, Challenger, Discovery, Atlantis, and Endeavour - now grace the Shuttle Firing Room inside the Launch Control Center (LCC) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida."

Keith's note: NASA KSC PAO has posted high resolution versions of these posters online: Discovery, Atlantis, Endeavour, Columbia, and Challenger

Rocket Motors to Nowhere?

Frank's note: Heaven forbid that the 5-segment solid rocket motor test would have blown up - nobody in their right minds would want that. But I have to ask why on Earth is NASA proceeding to invest time and money in testing boosters that may have no role in the future of human spaceflight.

The Senate seems hell bent on requiring NASA to develop the next Heavy Lift launch vehicle using "no less than four segment solids", but the requirement, contained in the report not the actual Senate bill, has yet to be lodged in the House version, still in play. Wouldn't it have been better to wait a few weeks and see how the House bill language winds up in the much anticipated CR. Would it have killed them? So far, Congress seems intent to make a Shuttle-derived solution the basics of a much-accelerated HLV launcher for as-yet undefined payloads to haul into deep space to as yet undefined destinations.



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This page is an archive of entries in the Shuttle News category from September 2010.

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