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  Space Shuttles - Space Station
  STS-122: December 9, SCRUB! (Page 2)

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Author Topic:   STS-122: December 9, SCRUB!
Robert Pearlman
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From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 12-18-2007 05:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
After Tuesday's test of Atlantis' external tank, shuttle program manager Wayne Hale said it confirmed that the sensors themselves are not the problem. The preliminary results point to a section of the ECO system's wiring known as a "feed-through" connector.

The data will be presented to managers on Wednesday with recommendations on how to proceed.

Robert Pearlman
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Registered: Nov 1999

posted 12-19-2007 06:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Shuttle program managers approved a plan Wednesday to remove foam around a connector on Atlantis' external tank based on the analysis of data from yesterday's tanking test.

Managers are scheduled to convene again December 27 to discuss the issue and potential remedies.

NASA also delayed the mating of solid rocket boosters and an external tank for February's STS-123 mission, in the case access to that tank's sensor system is also required.

Robert Pearlman
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From: Houston, TX
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posted 12-27-2007 05:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Further testing and analysis of the ECO fuel sensor system has indicated that a three part feed-through connector is the root cause of the false readings that led to scrubbing the December 6 and December 9 attempts to launch shuttle Atlantis. The connector passes electric signals from sensors inside the external tank to shuttle electronics outside the tank.

Shuttle managers decided on Thursday to remove portions of the connector and redesign the interface by soldering the pins to sockets at the external-to-feed-through side of the connector prior to installing the replacement into the external tank.

It is unknown how long it will take to complete the modifications and reapply foam to the tank. Managers will assess the progress of the work before determining a new target launch date for Atlantis.

"This is probably going to not allow us to fly on January 10," shuttle program manager Wayne Hale said during an afternoon teleconference. "We're probably going to be a little bit after that."

Mr Meek
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Posts: 348
From: Chattanooga, TN
Registered: Dec 2007

posted 12-28-2007 12:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mr Meek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
Shuttle managers decided on Thursday to remove portions of the connector and redesign the interface by soldering the pins to sockets at the external-to-feed-through side of the connector prior to installing the replacement into the external tank.

Funny how some things about electronics hold true no matter what the application. Whether you're a hobbyist building a guitar amp kit at home or NASA attempting to launch the most complex machine ever devised, a soldered joint is always more secure than a friction fit.

We may have come a long way from Mercury/Redstone, but it still takes the same "Go fix it" tech mentality to get the spacecraft off the ground. I, for one, am glad to see that a program often mired in politics and nonsense still has moments reminiscent of the "good old days" where guys with slide rules and soldering irons helped turn test pilots into explorers.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 01-03-2008 05:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The space shuttle program is protecting January 24 as the earliest launch date for Atlantis.

As work progresses, that date will be modified as required, said John Shannon, deputy manager for the shuttle program, during a media teleconference held today. The schedule depends on test results and modifications to the external tank's fuel sensor system feed-through connector.

Should more time be necessary, the launch could occur during the first week of February (specifically February 2-7).

The connector is undergoing testing at Marshall Space Flight Center, where it can be subjected to the same conditions it saw during the earlier launch attempts.

Technicians at Kennedy Space Center will modify a replacement connector for the one that was removed. Metal pins inside the connector will be soldered to the socket. The new connector is scheduled to be in place by January 10.

"We're fairly confident that if the problem is where we think it is, that this will solve that," Shannon said.

East-Frisian
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From: Germany
Registered: Apr 2005

posted 01-04-2008 01:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for East-Frisian     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Launches and landings end of January sounds not good. Remember all the disasters of the past.

eilisk
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Posts: 100
From: London
Registered: Oct 2004

posted 01-05-2008 09:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for eilisk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was hoping to get to Florida in February for a couple of weeks, actually to try to see STS-123, but it looks like STS-122 will now almost fit into my own launch window.

Does anyone have any idea exactly what a "protected" launch date means? Due to work and so on we cannot fly out any earlier than the 28th Jan, so we're going to try and book as late as possible and hope for the best.

Luckily there's a load of things to do as well in Florida if we can't see the launch.

All the best
Eilis

Robert Pearlman
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From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-05-2008 12:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by eilisk:
Does anyone have any idea exactly what a "protected" launch date means?
NASA must reserve use of the launch range as well as plan for the availability of its contractors and employees to be able to launch on any given day. As January 24 is the earliest day managers feel they could be ready to launch, they protected that date such that it would even be a possibility were their plans to proceed without any issue.

As it happens though, the chances of their launching any time before the first week in February are very slim.

art540
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Posts: 432
From: Orange, California USA
Registered: Sep 2006

posted 01-05-2008 12:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for art540   Click Here to Email art540     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What happened to words such as reserved or allocated for range dates? How long has protected been used? Is it a NASA term but the range calls it another name?

cspg
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From: Geneva, Switzerland
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posted 01-11-2008 12:20 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
New launch date: Feb. 7 (depending on the launch of a Progress cargo ship planned on the same day...)

Chris.

Robert Pearlman
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From: Houston, TX
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posted 01-11-2008 02:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA release
quote:
NASA Announces Space Shuttle Launch Targets

NASA Friday announced Feb. 7 as the target launch date for shuttle Atlantis' STS-122 mission to the International Space Station and mid-March for the launch of Endeavour on STS-123. Liftoff of Atlantis from NASA's Kennedy Space Center, Fla., will be at 2:47 p.m. EST.

A decision by the Russian Federal Space Agency to move up its Progress launch from Feb. 7 to Feb. 5 enables both STS-122 and STS-123 to launch before the next Russian Soyuz mission in early April. This allows astronauts assigned to the space station's Expedition 16 crew to complete the tasks they have trained for, including support of the launch and docking of Jules Verne, the first European Space Agency Automated Transfer Vehicle. Targeting Feb. 7 also allows time to complete modifications to the engine cutoff sensor system that postponed two shuttle launch attempts in December.


Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-24-2008 04:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
According to Florida Today, when NASA makes its next attempt to launch Atlantis, only 3 out of 4 working ECO sensors will be needed for the countdown to proceed.

NASA has set a media briefing for no earlier than 2 p.m. CST on January 30, following a meeting that will set an official launch date for STS-122. Launch is currently targeted for February 7.

NASA also set today the target date for STS-123: March 11, with a liftoff of time of 2:31 a.m. EDT.

Once the new date is announced, this thread will be closed and a new one started for the next attempt.

cspg
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Posts: 4046
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 01-25-2008 03:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On a related note, NASA's web site has a strange STS-122 press kit change. It's still listed as a 15mb file but once downloaded it's only 5.9Mb (file name: 203212main_sts122_presskit3.pdf). The earlier version, presskit2.pdf was indeed a 15.4Mb file. Haven't checked why the discrepancy in the file sizes...

Chris.

Kirsten
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Posts: 503
From: Delft, Netherlands
Registered: Apr 2001

posted 01-28-2008 05:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kirsten   Click Here to Email Kirsten     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
NASA has set a media briefing for no earlier than 2 p.m. CST on January 30, following a meeting that will set an official launch date for STS-122. Launch is currently targeted for February 7.
Already last week, ESA sent out invitations to press members to attend launch events on 7 February at several ESA sites.

Kirsten

LCDR Scott Schneeweis
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posted 01-29-2008 03:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LCDR Scott Schneeweis   Click Here to Email LCDR Scott Schneeweis     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
May be premature... NASASpaceflight.com reporting that the shuttle payload bay door cannot be secured in vertical due to an observed crimp in one of the freon coolant hoses feeding the radiator.

------------------
Scott Schneeweis
http://www.SPACEAHOLIC.com/


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