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  White Pine trees from seeds flown on STS-83

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Author Topic:   White Pine trees from seeds flown on STS-83

Posts: 1030
From: New Jersey, USA
Registered: Mar 2010

posted 04-30-2012 07:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fezman92   Click Here to Email Fezman92     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I thought this was cool because it is on the front page of my local paper although it is disappointing that the writer did not even take the short time to look up the name of the mission.
Officials marked Arbor Day here by planting a tree grown from space-traveling seeds that flew 1.5 million miles aboard the space shuttle Columbia with an astronaut from New Jersey.

The city was one of 35 in the state randomly selected from about 600 entries during the 86th annual New Jersey Shade Tree Federation Conference last year. The nonprofit federation assists individuals and agencies entrusted with the selection, planting and care of trees.

Astronaut Gregory Linteris, a Bergen County native, took eastern white pine tree seeds with him in 1997 on Columbia's 22nd voyage. The mission lasted three days, 23 hours, 13 minutes and 38 seconds, according to NASA.

Once on Earth, the seeds germinated in only seven days — about half the normal germination time. NASA then gave them to the New Jersey Division of Parks and Forestry.

The tree was planted Friday — on National Arbor Day — by Mayor Robert Romano along with members of the city's Environmental Commission, Sue Fenili and David Lowenstern. The city is withholding the location of the tree until it matures in a few years.

A memorial plaque is being considered for the tree at a later date to memorialize the mission and the Columbia crew. In 2003, the shuttle's seven-member crew died when Columbia broke up while returning to Earth.

Robert Pearlman

Posts: 30714
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 04-30-2012 07:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Originally posted by Fezman92:
...although it is disappointing that the writer did not even take the short time to look up the name of the mission.
Doing so though, raises an interesting question: did the seeds only fly on STS-83, or were they also re-flown with Linteris on STS-94?

The article mentions the seeds flew on the 22nd flight of Columbia, the four-day STS-83 mission. But as we know, that flight was the first and only re-flight of the program, the crew launching three months later on STS-94.

Though not out the question, I'd be surprised if the astronauts had a chance to re-pack their personal preference kits and official flight kit items between landing and launching again...

Hart Sastrowardoyo

Posts: 2583
From: Toms River, NJ
Registered: Aug 2000

posted 05-01-2012 09:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From what I was told - I did a story about such a tree last year in Freehold - and from what I've seen in other reports, all seeds were carried from STS-83. I've not heard of the seeds being recarried on STS-94.

That said, there's talk of a space tree being planted in Long Branch this year, although Arbor Day has come and gone. If it happens, and Linteris is there, I'll ask for a clarification as to whether or not the seeds were reflown.

Maybe other astronauts can be asked? Don Thomas and Susan Still-Kilrain make enough appearances....

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