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  STS-123: ISS goes global with 'hand and hope' (Page 3)

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Author Topic:   STS-123: ISS goes global with 'hand and hope'
Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-16-2008 07:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dextre had its first workout today, as the brakes on its arms' joints were tested.

Garrett Reisman and Bob Behnken commanded each of the robot's arms to move slightly and then come to a rest to insure that their brakes were running normally.

All the joints passed the diagnostic maneuver, with one exception, the wrist pitch joint on arm no. 2, which exhibited minor brake slippage. The joint is rated to allow 10.3 degrees of movement when applying 20 volts. Instead, it registered 10.4.

The joint was tested several times and flight controllers noticed that between each test, its performance was gradually improving. In addition, the 10.3 baseline was established as an average value across all the joints, such that it may be possible for that particular joint to operate nominally at a slightly higher level.

Mr Meek
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posted 03-16-2008 10:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mr Meek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Ok, seriously... can I set aside some of my tax dollars to buy a beer for whomever is writing the FD summaries? An Asimov reference, followed by Dr. Strangelove? Brilliant.

(Incidentally, they don't have anything to worry about with Dextre. As all Asimov nerds know, the implied Zeroth Law is "A Robot must know it is a Robot." No worries, as long as he's convinced he's the coolest Nintendo accessory on the block.)

Jay Chladek
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posted 03-17-2008 12:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
And all this probably from the same person that brought us "Mr. Clay" on STS-120.

Since it looks like I'll be doing a little "ahem" research for a certain book, I plan to look into whom this might be. Of course it could be a group of somebodies too.

And I am also honestly surprised that the boys on the ground haven't picked up on the names "Dextre" and "Laboratory" to do a little reference to the Cartoon Network show "Dexter's Laboratory". Then again, maybe they might, using Dede as the reason for the slight problem in Dextre's wrist joint.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-17-2008 05:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
There's Klingons Europeans off the starboard bow, Captain...

From today's execute package (featuring green-color text for the first few pages):

Got the feeling that you're being followed? There may be something to that. ATV has been steadily chasing you around the globe and sometime today should be above the horizon off the station's nose (opposite the velocity vector) today. A free green beverage, of your choice from the galley, to the first to identify the bright star rising in the west. Happy Saint Patrick's Day.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-17-2008 05:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Tonight's spacewalk, the third for the STS-123 mission, began at 5:51 p.m. CDT.

STS-123 mission specialist Rick Linnehan, EV1, is wearing a spacesuit with solid red stripes. Bob Behnken, EV2, has no stripes on his extravehicular mobility unit.

"Happy St. Patrick's Day and have a good EVA," said IVA officer Mike Foreman to the two spacewalkers.

"I forgot it was St. Patrick's Day," answered Linnehan. "We should have worn our green EMUs."

Together, Linnehan and Behnken will outfit Dexte by:

  • installing the ORU and tool platform/tool holder assembly;
  • installing the Camera Light Pant Tilt Assembly (CLPA); and
  • removing thermal covers.
They will also prepare the Spacelab Logistics Pallet (SLP) for landing, move the MISSE 6 experiment to the Columbus module, transfer a spare Canadarm2 yaw joint and transfer two spare Direct Current Switching Units.

"Go get 'em Bam Bam," said Rick Linnehan to Bob "Bam Bam" Behnken as the EVA began. "You have an appointment with Mr. Dextre from the CSA"

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-17-2008 08:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Linnehan and Behnken, running approximately 45 minutes behind on their time line, have installed Dextre's ORU platform and were working to install the tool assembly.

Linnehan, a self-described amateur astronomer, used the time he had while riding the Canadarm2 to get in some stargazing. "I think I maybe saw the Southern Cross, and definitely a satellite fly over... two satellites... three satellites... wow!" he exclaimed to no one in particular.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-17-2008 09:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Linnehan works on installing the mount for MISSE on the side of Columbus.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-17-2008 09:53 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Linnehan retrieves and installs on the station a spare yaw joint for the Canadarm2.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-17-2008 11:13 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
While Linnehan worked to install the two spare DCSUs, Behnken struggled mounting the MISSE experiment to the side of the Columbus lab.

The suitcase-shaped package failed to seat in the socket, despite multiple attempts. Behnken reported seeing metal shavings that could be interfering with its installation. Unable to proceed, Behnken was told to return MISSE to where he retrieved it inside Endeavour's payload bay.

"Houston, sorry we couldn't get the MISSE on there," radioed Behnken.

"You couldn't have tried any harder," replied capcom Steve Robinson.

"You gave it your all Bob," added Linnehan.

"Herculean," Mike Foreman chimed in from inside Endeavour.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-18-2008 12:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The third spacewalk for the STS-123 mission came to a close after 6 hours and 53 minutes at 12:43 a.m. CDT.

By comparison, 43 years ago today, the first ever spacewalk conducted by Russian cosmonaut Alexei Leonov, 12 minutes in duration aboard his Voskhod 2 capsule back on March 18, 1965.

This was the sixth spacewalk for mission specialist Rick Linnehan, who now has logged a career total of 42 hours and 23 minutes outside in space. Bob Behnken was performing his first EVA.

This was the 107th spacewalk dedicated to the assembly and servicing of the ISS. In total, astronauts and cosmonauts have devoted 674 hours and 45 minutes to EVAs outside the station.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-18-2008 01:20 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Canadarm2 has grappled Dextre, ahead of removing it from the Spacelab pallet.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-18-2008 02:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dextre has now cleared the Spacelab pallet, moving it to an 'overnight' park position.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-18-2008 12:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
cS: Space shuttle to return pallet full of history
Its purpose now served, the shipping pallet used to launch and then configure a Canadian two- armed robot for the International Space Station (ISS) will be reinstalled into space shuttle Endeavour's payload bay on Tuesday, in preparation for returning it to Earth.

Modified to support the Canadian Space Agency's Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM), or Dextre robot, this Spacelab Logistics Pallet (SLP) was making its fourth and final flight to space, concluding a long history that can be traced back before the first shuttle left the launch pad.

The pallet is not the only item making the roundtrip from the Earth to the space station and back. Stowed on-board Endeavour's middeck is a collection of soon-to-be space artifacts, ranging from a few hundred mission patches to a celebrity's playbill title page.

Robert Pearlman
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STS-123 commander Dom Gorie took a few moments today to thank a retiring flight controller for his service to the crew and to NASA:
"Dan Adamo has worked over 50 space shuttle missions in mission control. As a flight dynamics officer he has contributed hugely to our space program. I know he worked on the first rendezvous mission with Mir and also the first space shuttle missions. Having personally flown to Mir and ISS now a couple of times, I sure appreciate the work he has done on rendezvous strategies. I know our crew appreciates it, and the entire astronaut office is reliant on the work he has personally done to insure our rendezvous are safe and we have back-up to those. His retirement is going to put a hole in our FDO area. I'm sure we've got a bunch of folks that are so informed, but he's going to be surely missed when he retires. But congratulations on wonderful and just valuable career to NASA."

Robert Pearlman
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STS-123 pilot Greg Johnson, at the controls of the Canadarm2, is moving Dextre to its attach point on the side of the Destiny lab.

Robert Pearlman
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At 6:59 p.m. CDT, the Canadian Space Agency's Dextre Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator (SPDM) was berthed to the side of the U.S. Destiny lab.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-18-2008 08:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Canadarm2 separates from Dextre.

Robert Pearlman
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The Spacelab Logistics Pallet (SLP) that carried Dextre to the International Space Station and served as a platform for its on-orbit configuration was reinstalled into Endeavour's payload bay at 10:54 p.m. CDT by Garrett Reisman and Greg Johnson controlling the space station's robot arm. It will be returned to Earth and retired.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 05:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Tonight's spacewalk, the fourth for the STS-123 mission, began at 5:04 p.m. CDT.

STS-123 mission specialist Bob Behnken, EV2, is wearing a spacesuit with no red stripes. Mike Foreman, EV3, has broken horizontal red stripes on his extravehicular mobility unit (EMU).

"So, are you ready for a good stroll today?" radioed IVA officer Rick Linnehan to both spacewalkers.

"We're ready," replied Behnken.

"Have fun storming the castle," added ISS flight engineer Garrett Reisman.

Together, they will replace a failed Remote Power Controller Module on the station's truss and conduct a demonstration of the Tile Repair Ablator Dispenser (T-RAD). Similar to a caulk gun, the spacewalkers will use T-RAD to mix and apply salmon- colored STA-54 material, also referred to as "goo", into holes in several demonstration tiles. The repaired samples will be returned to Earth in Endeavor's payload bay for post-flight testing.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 06:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Behnken successfully replaced a failed circuit breaker, his first task for the EVA, however Foreman couldn't reconfigure the corresponding electrical patch panel as he struggled to attach a cable. Ultimately, mission control decided it was time to move on, leaving one of the station's stabilizing gyroscopes without redundant power.

"We think at this point, if you guys concur, it is time to re-throw the bale, put the cap back on, and move on to greener pastures," said capcom Steve Robinson, referring to a dust cap that protects the outlet into which Foreman was trying to connect the stubborn cable.

"Sounds good Steve, sorry about that guys," replied Foreman.

"No, good work Mike, thanks for sticking with it that long," said Linnehan.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 06:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Behnken and Foreman are setting up the tile repair test on the side of Destiny:

Robert Pearlman
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Foreman has completed a "dry run" with the T-RAD before pressurizing the gun. "You are Captain T-RAD, Mr. Goo, you are in control today," Linnehan said to Foreman.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 07:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Foreman has begun the T-RAD test. After dispensing the first material, Foreman observed, "I can see some bubbles at the surface that are popping. Pinhole-type looking bubbles, fairly shiny surface."

"There's a lot of bubbling, like its baking almost," said Linnehan, watching Foreman's helmet cam video from inside Endeavour.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 07:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Foreman has applied two layers the STA-54 material to the tile samples. The "goo" will cure to form an ablative that could be used to patch divots and holes in the shuttle's heat shield, were it damaged during launch or by micrometeorites in orbit.

"Nice work Mike, you'll be our tile and grout specialist," said Linnehan.

"I hope we don't need one," replied Foreman.

"Good point," said Linnehan.

Ground tests of the STA-54 paste had shown a tendency for air bubbles to rise to the surface, which could then by tamped down.

The concern, which led to this test, was that in space the bubbles might remain embedded in the material, as happens with dough when making a loaf of bread.

"It really is like a loaf of bread with all the little bubbles in there," observed Foreman. "A lot of 'bread loafing.'"

Robert Pearlman
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"We are absolutely captivated by what you guys are doing up there, you're like brain surgeons up there," radioed capcom Steve Robinson.

"You hear that Mike? You're a brain surgeon," said Linnehan.

"I've never been called that before," Foreman admitted.

"Probably never will be again," Linnehan replied.

"Hey Mike, are you going to sign your name?" asked Robinson of Foreman, as he completed the test.

"I didn't see a good spot, Steve."

"I heard them, Houston, say sign your name in the samples, Mike," said Linnehan.

"How about a thumb print?" suggested Robinson.

"I think I can see my face in one. How about that?" replied Foreman.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 09:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Behnken and Foreman made their way down from the Destiny lab into Endeavour's payload bay to stow the T-RAD treated tiles for their return to Earth.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 10:24 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Mike Foreman removed launch locks from a docking port on the side of Harmony Node 2 and then removed a thermal cover from Dextre's hand on the side of Destiny.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 10:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Behnken has now made his way back up to the Z1 truss where the patch panel that gave Foreman trouble at the start of the EVA is located. He will try to use some tools he brought with him to get the stubborn cable to connect.

STS-117 spacewalker Danny Olivas has taken over from Steve Robinson as a "guest" capcom to offer Behnken suggestions on how to best approach the cable connection.

While Behnken continues his work, Foreman is inspecting a docking port on Harmony for a lost pit pin. After that, he will proceed to the Quest airlock to clean up and get ready to go back inside.

Robert Pearlman
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Neither Foreman nor Behnken were successful in their final tasks for this spacewalk. Foreman was unable to locate a lost pit pin; Behnken was unable to connect a cable, despite the use of a prybar and probe tool.

Both spacewalkers are now back at the Quest airlock.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 11:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The fourth spacewalk for the STS-123 mission came to a close after 6 hours and 24 minutes at 11:28 p.m. CDT.

This was the second spacewalk for both astronauts. Bob Behnken now has a career total of 13 hours and 17 minutes outside in space. Mike Foreman has 13 hours, 32 minutes.

This was the 108th spacewalk dedicated to the assembly and servicing of the ISS. In total, astronauts and cosmonauts have devoted 681 hours and 9 minutes to EVAs outside the station.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2008 11:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
And now from something completely different, from today's execute package:
Welcome to the first full day of spring. We know that there are one or two of you Navy folks on board so if you are performing any arcane seafaring rituals, associated with crossing the equator at the equinox, featuring shellbacks and polliwogs, we'd prefer not to hear about it. What happens on orbit stays on orbit.

NavySpaceFan
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posted 03-21-2008 07:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for NavySpaceFan   Click Here to Email NavySpaceFan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
...featuring shellbacks and polliwogs
I would hope that, as senior as they are, Captains Gorie and Foreman are already mighty shellbacks (like me!!!) and not a couple of stinking wogs! Can't speak for the rest of the crew, though.

cspg
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posted 03-22-2008 01:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
STS-123 MCC Status Report #22
quote:
The crew started its day at 12:28 p.m., with the song "Enter Sandman" performed by Metallica. The song was played for Mission Specialist Robert L. Behnken.
Great song. But to use it as a "wake-up" call, I can't help but believe that there must be a bunch of sadistic people at Mission Control!

It happened to me once a long, long time ago: hard rock music in the morning just gave me a headache, a cranky mood and a tempting desire to kill the idiot who woke us up with such music...

Chris.

Jay Chladek
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posted 03-22-2008 02:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I am curious as to whom might have requested THAT for a wakeup call. And I am also curious as to what the reaction of the crewmates were when they woke up to it.

cspg
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posted 03-22-2008 04:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From Spaceflight Now:
quote:
Behnken and his crewmates were awakened today by a recording of Metallica's "Enter Sandman" radioed up from mission control.

"Good morning Endeavour. And good morning to you, Dr. Bob," astronaut Al Drew called from Houston.

"Good morning, Alvin. I hope everything's going great down there," Behnken replied. "Thanks for that great wakeup music and I'd like to thank my fiance for choosing that for me. I just want to tell her I miss her and I can't wait to get back and see her here in a couple of days."

"Thanks for the good words, Bob. The music has got us awake down here, I'm sure that shook you out of bed as well."

"It did, Al. Thanks!"


Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-22-2008 03:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Today's spacewalk, the fifth and final EVA for the STS-123 mission, began at 3:34 p.m. CDT.

Bob Behnken, EV2, is wearing a spacesuit with no red stripes. Mike Foreman, EV3, has broken horizontal red stripes on his EMU.

Together, they will attach the orbiter's inspection boom (OBSS) to the space station's truss, temporarily stowing it there for use by the next mission. STS-124, which is scheduled to launch in late May with the Kibo pressurized module, the largest of all the station's laboratories, will not have room in Discovery's payload bay to carry the OBSS to orbit.

Behnken and Foreman will also reattempt the installation of two MISSE experiment packages that was started during the mission's third spacewalk but ran into connection problems, and will inspect the station's starboard solar alpha array joint (SARJ), which has been disabled since it was discovered to be damaged last year.

Robert Pearlman
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At one end of the OBSS are cameras and other sensitive instruments that are used to inspect the orbiter's heatshield for damage sustained either during launch or by debris while in orbit.

When in the payload bay, on the orbiter arm, or on the station arm, the boom's heaters protect it from being damaged by the extreme temperatures of the space environment.

To attach the boom, the spacewalkers needed to first configure a "keep alive" cable that will feed it power from the station. Once ready for the hand off from the station arm, Foreman and Behnken will have only 30 minutes to attach the OBSS before it's subject to being damaged.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-22-2008 04:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Greg Johnson and Garrett Reisman moved the station's arm with the OBSS into the vicinity of the two spacewalkers.

Reaching up, Foreman successfully attached the "keep alive" umbilical to the orbiter's boom.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-22-2008 05:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
"Laying out the rope, Bob, laying out the rope," said Foreman as he fed out the keep alive cable as the OBSS was moved into position. "Got a lot of memory to this coil."

"It's going to remember you!" replied Behnken.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-22-2008 05:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Canadarm2 has released the OBSS and the spacewalkers are working to attach it to the truss.

"If you guys will humor me, I have a quote that I think is appropriate that I would like to play," announced Rick Linnehan from inside Endeavour.

"Go ahead, Rick!" approved Foreman.

A few moments later, an audio recording played from "Gladiator" actor Russell Crowe proclaiming, "What we do in life, echoes into eternity!"


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