Space News
space history and artifacts articles

Messages
space history discussion forums

Sightings
worldwide astronaut appearances

Resources
selected space history documents

Websites
related space history websites

  collectSPACE: Messages
  Space Shuttles - Space Station
  STS-122: Columbus sets sail for space station (Page 1)

Post New Topic  Post A Reply
profile | register | preferences | faq | search


This topic is 6 pages long:   1  2  3  4  5  6 
next newest topic | next oldest topic
Author Topic:   STS-122: Columbus sets sail for space station
Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 01-31-2008 02:28 AM     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 Gives 'Go' for Space Shuttle Launch

NASA senior managers completed a review Wednesday of space shuttle Atlantis' readiness for flight. Pending closure of an issue with a shuttle radiator hose, the STS-122 mission will launch Feb. 7 at 2:45 p.m. EST.

During an inspection of Atlantis Tuesday, one of four hoses that carry Freon to the shuttle radiators in the payload bay was found bent and not properly retracted in its storage box. The others were fully retracted into their storage boxes, as expected. Teams are continuing to gather data and assess any potential forward work. Managers will convene Saturday to further review and analyze what, if any, remaining work is required before launch.

During the 11-day mission, Commander Steve Frick and his six crewmates will install the European Space Agency's new Columbus laboratory on the International Space Station. Columbus will expand the research facilities of the station and provide scientists around the world with the ability to conduct a variety of life, physical and materials science experiments. The mission will include three spacewalks, delivery of a new crew member to the station and the return of another astronaut after nearly four months aboard the complex.

Atlantis' launch date was announced at the conclusion of Wednesday’s executive-level Flight Readiness Review. The one-day video teleconference meeting was led from NASA Headquarters in Washington. Top NASA and contractor managers assessed any risks associated with the mission and determined whether the shuttle's equipment, support systems and procedures are ready for flight. The first executive-level Flight Readiness Review for STS-122 was held Nov. 30.

The STS-122 mission was delayed in December 2007 after failures occurred in a fuel sensor system while Atlantis' external fuel tank was being filled. A tanking, or fueling, test on Dec. 18, 2007, revealed that open circuits in the external tank's feed through connector were the most likely cause of false readings in the system during launch attempts on Dec. 6 and Dec. 9. A modified connector was designed with pins and sockets soldered together. Both the original and modified connector configurations were subjected to testing that verified that the new design corrects the open circuits found in the original connector.

The sensor system is one of several that protect the shuttle's main engines by triggering their shut down if fuel runs unexpectedly low. NASA's current Launch Commit Criteria require that three of the four engine cutoff, or ECO, sensors function properly before liftoff from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Joining Commander Frick on STS-122 will be pilot Alan Poindexter and mission specialists Leland Melvin, Rex Walheim, Stanley Love and European Space Agency astronauts Hans Schlegel and Leopold Eyharts. Eyharts will replace current station crew member Dan Tani, who has lived on the outpost since October. Eyharts will return to Earth on shuttle Endeavour's STS-123 mission, currently targeted for launch on March 11, 2008.


cspg
Member

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

posted 01-31-2008 02:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
And today (Jan.31), the STS-122 press kit is now a 28.7Mb file! (see my earlier post).

Chris.

1202 Alarm
Member

Posts: 276
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: Nov 2003

posted 01-31-2008 03:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for 1202 Alarm     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
February 7 to March 11, that's only 33 days.

If I'm right, it's the shortest time between flights since... 2001 February 7 STS-98 to March 8 STS-102.

Don't remember the shortest time between flights of the whole program, maybe 17 days with the April 12 1985 STS-51-D and April 29 1985 STS-51-B.

Ben
Member

Posts: 1843
From: Daytona Beach, FL
Registered: May 2000

posted 01-31-2008 09:18 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ben   Click Here to Email Ben     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I believe the shortest was 61C to 51L, Jan 12 to 28; 16 days. And note that it was ready to go a few days before that.

I also note that 51D and B were the same pad, however, which perhaps makes that feat more worthy.

Tom
Member

Posts: 1275
From: New York
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 01-31-2008 12:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom   Click Here to Email Tom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Ben:
I believe the shortest was 61C to 51L, Jan 12 to 28; 16 days. And note that it was ready to go a few days before that.
Keep in mind that was right before NASA was planning to launch STS-61F and 61G within a few (I believe 6) days of each other.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-01-2008 10:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Florida Today: NASA prepares hose repair plan for Atlantis
quote:
In a simple fix, a kinked Freon hose likely will be pushed back into its storage box on Monday as Atlantis' payload bay doors are closed in preparation for a Thursday launch.

During re-entry, Atlantis' crew will rely on a backup system to cool the orbiter payload bay if the hose unexpectedly fails.

"We're seeing a path to fly (Thursday)," NASA spokesman George Diller said. Launch would be at 2:45 p.m.

NASA officials today intend to reveal details of their plan to work around the kinked hose, which X-rays show is undamaged and has not leaked.


Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-04-2008 09:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Space shuttle Atlantis' payload bay doors were closed Sunday evening at about 10 p.m. EST with no radiator retract hose issue. The team was satisfied with the final placement of the hose at door closure.

Atlantis' seven astronauts will arrive at Kennedy this morning at 10:30 a.m. EST. The countdown clock will begin ticking down today at 5 p.m. EST.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-04-2008 05:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

With space shuttle Atlantis and its crew of seven astronauts ready for a mission to the International Space Station, NASA commenced the official countdown Monday evening at 5:00 p.m. EST for a February 7 liftoff.

Launch time is 2:45 p.m. EST from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Mission commander Steve Frick led his international team of astronauts to the launch site this morning and was upbeat about the flight.

"We're very happy about the condition of Atlantis," Frick said.

Frick said the crew would keep its eyes on the weather, following a forecast calling for a 40 percent chance of acceptable conditions at launch time.

Rob Joyner
Member

Posts: 1292
From: GA, USA
Registered: Jan 2004

posted 02-06-2008 12:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dave Mosher from SPACE.com writes today:
quote:
Should unfavorable conditions push the agency to scrub its launch in the early tomorrow morning, mission managers will aim for a 2:19 p.m. EST (1919 GMT) attempt on Friday. The chance of getting Atlantis into orbit then has also been lowered, from 80 percent to 60 percent, because of the potential for lingering rain showers.
Does anyone know by what time NASA would officially scrub "early tomorrow morning" if the weather worsens?

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-06-2008 01:15 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 Rob Joyner:
Does anyone know by what time NASA would officially scrub "early tomorrow morning" if the weather worsens?
The first decision would come before tanking, between 3:20 a.m. and 5:20 a.m. EST when mission managers will meet to verify that there are no violations of launch commit criteria. (That said, managers have stated they could wait up to an hour more to make the call, if needed.)

If they proceed with tanking, then a weather scrub would be made at either just before the T-9 minutes built-in hold resumes (2:36 p.m.) or any time after.

The other countdown milestone when a weather scrub call might be made would be just before 10:55 a.m. when the crew is ready to depart for the pad. If mission managers feel the weather is very likely not to cooperate, they will save the crew the stress associated with boarding the vehicle.

(All times above, of course, apply only to a February 7 launch.)

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 04:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Mission managers have given the "go" to begin fueling Atlantis' external tank with cryogenic hydrogen and oxygen in preparation for today's 2:45 p.m. EST launch attempt of the STS-122 mission.

Official start of tanking was at 5:21 a.m. EST. At approximately, 8:20 a.m. this morning, fueling should be complete.

There are no technical issues being worked however forecasters expect a cold front to move over Kennedy Space Center, bringing with it clouds and storms. Currently, there is a predicted 30% chance of acceptable conditions at launch time.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 06:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The previously troublesome low fuel engine cutoff (ECO) sensors have thus far been reported in good, working order. Mission managers are waiting for a final series of tests to be completed before declaring the liquid hydrogen sensors good for launch.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 07:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Fueling of Atlantis' external tank has been completed. A final inspection team is arriving at Pad 39A with the close-out crew reporting to the white room to prepare for the arrival of the STS-122 crew approximately three hours from now.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 07:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Though mission managers continue to monitor the sensors, launch director Doug Lyons has said "we have a good ECO system and we're ready to go fly."

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 08:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As launch preparations continue in Florida, 200 miles overhead Progress M-63 is on its final approach to the International Space Station for a 9:38 a.m. EST docking. The Russian unmanned supply craft, which was launched on Feb. 5, brings supplies and gifts for the ISS Expedition 16 crew.

mjanovec
Member

Posts: 3593
From: Midwest, USA
Registered: Jul 2005

posted 02-07-2008 10:42 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by 1202 Alarm:
If I'm right, it's the shortest time between flights since... 2001 February 7 STS-98 to March 8 STS-102.

Of course, if we look beyond the Shuttle program, we'll see that Gemini VI launched only 11 days after Gemini VII. Also, had Gemini VI not aborted on it's first attempt, it would have only been a difference of 8 days.

Plus, both launches were from the same pad too!

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 10:53 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

At 10:55 a.m. EST, the crew of STS-122 left their quarters in the Operations and Checkout Building and departed for Pad 39A.

After the short ride to their waiting launch vehicle, the astronauts took the elevator to the 195-foot level, where one by one each crew member is boarding Atlantis.

Weather remains the only concern for today's attempt, with cloud ceilings currently red for launch. T-minus one hour, 52 minutes and counting...

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 12:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Forecasts have now slightly improved to a 40-percent chance that weather will allow an on-time liftoff this afternoon at 2:45 p.m.

With all seven astronauts strapped into their seats inside Atlantis, the orbiter's hatch has been closed and secured for launch. The astronauts are now going through final checks inside the orbiter to prepare for their journey to the International Space Station.

mjanovec
Member

Posts: 3593
From: Midwest, USA
Registered: Jul 2005

posted 02-07-2008 12:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Is there a specific order in which the crews do their walkouts? I assume it's usually the CDR first. Also, I notice the astronauts did their walkout in the same order they walked away from their aircraft in the February 4 photo Robert posted above. Is that coincidence? Or do they have a designated/rehearsed order in which they present themselves?

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 12:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The similarity between the crew arrival and walkout photographs is a coincidence, in so much that there have been arrivals where the order has been different (especially when they were still arriving by T-38s in pairs, whereas now they fly as a crew in one Gulfstream).

The order they depart the O&C building is orchestrated and rehearsed (during the Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test), with the commander and pilot always at the lead and then mission specialists by their number (Melvin is MS1, Walheim is MS2, Schlegel is MS3, etc.), followed by ISS crew members.

T-minus 14 minutes and counting to a 40 minute hold at T-9 minutes...

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 12:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
T-9 minutes and holding for 40 minutes.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 01:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Weather is presently observed and forecasted "go" for launch.

Launch director Doug Lyons has polled mission managers and all have reported Atlantis is ready to fly.

mjanovec
Member

Posts: 3593
From: Midwest, USA
Registered: Jul 2005

posted 02-07-2008 01:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
The order they depart the O&C building is orchestrated and rehearsed...
For how long has this order been orchestrated? I notice on the often-replayed walkout footage of the 51L crew, that pilot Mike Smith is not the No. 2 person to exit the O&C building.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 01:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
T-minus 9 minutes and counting! Weather is go for launch! Go Atlantis!

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 01:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
cS: Columbus sets sail for space station
Shuttle launches European lab, 300th American to orbit

What a beautiful launch! Atlantis and the STS-122 crew are in orbit!

Today's launch of Atlantis with ESA's Columbus laboratory also marks the seventh anniversary of Atlantis' STS-98 launch with the U.S. Destiny laboratory. Two labs, one orbiter, in one day (and seven years)!

GoesTo11
Member

Posts: 1026
From: Denver, CO USA
Registered: Jun 2004

posted 02-07-2008 01:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
MECO!!!

I can unclench now. Am I the only one who gets MORE tense each launch/landing? It's like the finish line is in sight; let's just get through it.

Mr Meek
Member

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

posted 02-07-2008 02:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mr Meek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I want to take whoever thought of the ET cam out for a fancy steak dinner. That shot of LC39, followed by shots of the heads-up roll and ET separation are just stunning.

tegwilym
Member

Posts: 2284
From: Renton, WA USA
Registered: Jan 2000

posted 02-07-2008 02:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for tegwilym   Click Here to Email tegwilym     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by GoesTo11:
Am I the only one who gets MORE tense each launch/landing?
No way. I have to stand up after MECO just to release my seat... if you know what I mean. *whew!* I still tense up at "go at throttle up".

"...we got a bunch of guys about to turn blue, we're breathing again."

Tom

garymilgrom
Member

Posts: 1571
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 02-07-2008 02:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There appeared to be some glowing residue from the rear of the orbiter after MECO. As the vehicle is clear of the atmosphere I could not understand what this was. Anyone else notice what looked like flames or debris or aurorae from the back of the Shuttle on the NASA TV feed? Thank you.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 03:26 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 garymilgrom:
There appeared to be some glowing residue from the rear of the orbiter after MECO.
If you are referring to the white plumes, then what you may have seen was the reaction control system (RCS) thrusters firing.

ejectr
Member

Posts: 1488
From: Brimfield, MA
Registered: Mar 2002

posted 02-07-2008 03:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ejectr   Click Here to Email ejectr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I think it was because the sun was directly behind the shuttle's tail in the ET camera view.

garymilgrom
Member

Posts: 1571
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 02-07-2008 03:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Robert that's a beautiful shot from an unusual angle. Were you west of the pad? How far?

I thought I saw colored glows and pieces of stuff behind the tail. I'll have to see a replay to make sure. Yes this was from the ET camera.

Thank you.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 03:54 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 garymilgrom:
Robert that's a beautiful shot from an unusual angle. Were you west of the pad? How far?
Thanks! The shot was taken from the press site, approximately 3.5 miles southwest from the pad.
quote:
I thought I saw colored glows and pieces of stuff behind the tail.
I think both Bob (ejectr) and I are correct as to what you saw:

The bits and pieces you saw was routine (and harmless) ice shedding from the aft of the orbiter. The sun angle led to the ice being more apparent than on previous flights.

kking
Member

Posts: 100
From: Topmost, Ky. USA
Registered: Nov 2002

posted 02-07-2008 06:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for kking   Click Here to Email kking     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great launch. Did anybody notice somewhere around the T-20 mark, George Diller had a open mike with a "Can I have your attention please" like he was upset. It may have been my imagination.

Kyle

Tom
Member

Posts: 1275
From: New York
Registered: Nov 2000

posted 02-07-2008 07:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tom   Click Here to Email Tom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yeah... I heard it too. Then there was a bit of silence after that.

Robert... great photos!!

MCroft04
Member

Posts: 1219
From: Smithfield, Me, USA
Registered: Mar 2005

posted 02-07-2008 07:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MCroft04   Click Here to Email MCroft04     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great reporting Robert, but it's painful to one who had tickets for the Causeway for the original Dec launch! But there are more launches scheduled for this year, and I aim to make one of them.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-07-2008 10:12 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 kking:
Did anybody notice somewhere around the T-20 mark, George Diller had a open mike with a "Can I have your attention please" like he was upset.
It was probably a mistake that the introduction was aired on NASA TV, but what Diller was doing was informing those at the space center what to do in the case of an emergency during the launch. It's a standard announcement that is made every time. Diller wasn't upset; he was just trying to get those in the area to listen, hence his formal tone.

Jay Chladek
Member

Posts: 2211
From: Bellevue, NE, USA
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 02-08-2008 03:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That was a pretty launch. But did any of you guys catch the video downlink from Atlantis of the ET doing its fuel venting to put it into a tumble? It is standard procedure for tanks to do this on shuttle flights, but I don't recall any previous flights getting a chance to watch it for that long a period of time (let alone record it). The plume coming from the tank was spectacular!

gliderpilotuk
Member

Posts: 3043
From: London, UK
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 02-08-2008 09:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Beautiful photo Robert.

Paul

Robert Pearlman
Editor

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

posted 02-08-2008 09:59 AM     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 gliderpilotuk:
Beautiful photo Robert.
Thanks! I had been so sure, due to the poor weather that was being predicted, that we weren't going to launch that when they gave the go and resumed the count at T-9 minutes, I had to scramble to set-up my camera. I was still switching lenses at T-30 seconds. Suffice to say, I'll never trust the weather reports again!


This topic is 6 pages long:   1  2  3  4  5  6 

All times are CT (US)

next newest topic | next oldest topic

Administrative Options: Close Topic | Archive/Move | Delete Topic
Post New Topic  Post A Reply
Hop to:

Contact Us | The Source for Space History & Artifacts

Copyright 1999-2012 collectSPACE.com All rights reserved.


Ultimate Bulletin Board 5.47a





advertisement