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  STS-126 mission viewing and commentary (Page 1)

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Author Topic:   STS-126 mission viewing and commentary
Ben
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posted 10-06-2008 02:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ben   Click Here to Email Ben     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Tickets to view the STS-126 launch from the NASA Causeway and KSC Visitor Complex will go on-sale at 9:00 a.m. EDT, Wednesday, October 8, on this website as well as by phone at +1 321-449-4400.

Launch ticket orders cannot be placed via email or by leaving a voice mail message. You must place your order online or by speaking to a reservation agent.

STS-126 is targeted to launch on November 14 at 7:55 p.m. EDT on a logistics, supply & repair mission to the International Space Station.

More information on shuttle launch viewing can be found on my website.

spaceman48263
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posted 10-07-2008 03:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceman48263   Click Here to Email spaceman48263     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just found out that my wife is sending me to see the STS-126 launch for my 50th birthday. My question to you experts is this: since I have never been to a launch what is the best way to see it?

I see two options listed at the Kennedy Space Center. Launch viewing transportation and admissions package at $56.00. Launch viewing from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex for $38.00. What is the best value here? Is the added price of the first package worth it? Can you get just as good of a view from outside Kennedy?

How fast will these tickets go? Do I need to be on line at 9:00 sharp Wednesday to get a chance at the closer tickets?

Sorry for all the questions. I'm looking forward to hearing back form you all!

KSCartist
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posted 10-07-2008 03:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for KSCartist   Click Here to Email KSCartist     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The first is for admission into the complex plus transportation to the causeway and back. You'll be a few miles closer and see the shuttle on the pad.

The second is for viewing from the Visitor Complex and you'll have to wait until it clears the tree line to see it.

After that is viewing from the river bank in Titusville. Your 12 miles away (as the crow flies) but it's free (save for some parking areas).

Enjoy! I know I will.

Tim

Ben
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posted 10-07-2008 06:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ben   Click Here to Email Ben     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You definitely should try for the causeway tickets. Some say the Dine With tickets sell out slightly slower and may increase your chances.

After that, my personal recommendation for a night launch is Titusville over the Visitor Complex. It is a little further but offers a clear view with all water between you and it; the water greatly reflects the light. My site above explains the differences.

Rob Joyner
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posted 10-07-2008 07:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by spaceman48263:
I just found out that my wife is sending me to see the STS-126 launch for my 50th birthday.
What a great birthday present!

The Launch Transportation Ticket (LTT) packages literally sell out within minutes. You need to be on line refreshing the order page a few minutes before 9:00 AM tomorrow.

When the tickets go on sale be prepared to type in your info accurately instead of in a hurry, but don't waste time. I learned this from experience - if you have to backspace there is a very good chance you won't get the tickets! Have all of your personal info in a ready-to-glance-at state. Write down your credit card number, exp. date and three digit security code found on the back of your credit card on a piece of paper so you can keep your hands on the keyboard.

To have a better chance at getting an LTT package opt for the "Premium Launch Package Launch Viewing Transportation, Admission and Dine with an Astronaut". This is the more expensive LTT package but tends to sell out after the cheaper LTT/Admission package. Not a bad deal though. You get a buffet meal, be audience to an astronaut's brief lecture about their career, get an autographed photo of the astronaut and get to participate in an open Q & A session with the astronaut too. Also, most will pose for photos after the meal.

If that's not your cup of tea then simply click on either option when ordering, as you have the choice of 12:30 PM or 3:00 PM for this particular launch.

The LTT packages will get you to the causeway between KSC and Cape Canaveral, just six miles from Launch Pad A. This is as close as the public can get. From here you can see the shuttle lift off from the pad and hear the roar of the launch about thirty seconds later!

I've never been at the KSC Visitor Complex during a shuttle launch but I know for sure you cannot see the launch from the pad.

As far as I know you can't get into KSC on launch day without the already paid for car placard that comes with the LTT packages in advance. If I didn't have an LTT I'd watch the launch from U.S. 1 in Titusville. It's about twelve miles away but you can see it launch in full glory from off the launch pad!

Good luck!
Rob

BMckay
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posted 10-24-2008 09:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for BMckay   Click Here to Email BMckay     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Anyone interested in a cS get together on that Saturday after the launch?

Bryan

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-30-2008 05:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA managers completed a review of space shuttle Endeavour's readiness for flight and set the official launch date for the STS-126 mission as November 14.

For further details, see our mission update thread: STS-126: Readying Endeavour for space

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-06-2008 11:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
For our readers in Oregon:
On Friday, Nov. 14, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI) will offer space exploration enthusiasts a front-row seat to watch Oregon astronaut Don Pettit launch into space aboard NASA's space shuttle Endeavour STS-126. OMSI will be showing the lift-off in the planetarium live via satellite on NASA TV beginning at 4:00 p.m., with the shuttle's launch scheduled at 4:55 p.m. PDT. Admission for the televised launch is free.

spaceman48263
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posted 11-07-2008 03:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceman48263   Click Here to Email spaceman48263     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, my birthday was Thursday and I got my ticket for the launch! You guys were right the tickets for the causeway sold out fast. She did get me tickets to view the launch from the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex. The package also includes breakfast with an Astronaut so it will be a full day. Are any of the old Apollo era restaurants still open in the area? We fly in on Thursday and stay until Sunday and would love to check out any old local hangouts. It would be nice to meet any of you if you will be at the complex for launch. Now I'll just pray for good weather and no technical issues!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-11-2008 05:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA release
NASA Announces Space Shuttle Prelaunch and Mission Web Coverage

A prelaunch webcast, live blogs, podcasts, pictures and videos will highlight NASA's Web coverage of space shuttle Endeavour's STS-126 mission to the International Space Station. Endeavour is scheduled to lift off Friday, Nov. 14, at 7:55 p.m. EST.

A webcast Nov. 13 at 11:30 a.m. will start the in-depth online coverage of the mission. Host Damon Talley of NASA's Digital Learning Network will preview the mission, and Endeavour Flow Director Ken Tenbusch will take viewers behind the scenes at America's spaceport as he explains the high-stakes work of preparing a shuttle for a mission in space.

A blog will provide launch countdown updates beginning at 2:30 p.m. on Nov. 14. Originating from NASA's Kennedy Space Center, the blog is the definitive Internet source for information leading up to launch.

During Endeavour's 15-day mission, the shuttle's seven crew members will deliver supplies and equipment necessary to double the station crew size from three to six members and will make four spacewalks to service the station's two Solar Alpha Rotary Joints, which allow its solar arrays to track the sun.

Visitors to NASA's shuttle Web site can read about the crew's progress and watch the spacewalks live. As Endeavour's flight wraps up, NASA will offer a blog detailing the spacecraft's return to Earth.

KAPTEC
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posted 11-12-2008 03:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KAPTEC   Click Here to Email KAPTEC     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I would be there with all of you.

Enjoy the launch guys!

Robert, please, since I cannot see the launch in Spain via TV... which one is the correct link to NASA TV where I could see it?

Thank you so much.

Jorge.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-12-2008 05:35 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA TV is accessible via's NASA's website on this page.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-13-2008 06:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA release
NASA TV to Air Clean Feed of Endeavour's STS-126 Countdown

NASA Television will provide a continuous clean video feed on its Media Channel of space shuttle Endeavour in the hours before its 7:55 p.m. EST liftoff on Nov. 14.

Beginning at 2:30 p.m., video will show one stationary wide shot of Endeavour on Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

The feed will include live audio of communications between launch controllers and the shuttle but not the commentary airing on NASA TV's Public Channel. NASA TV commentary will air on both channels beginning approximately nine minutes before the scheduled launch time at the conclusion of what is known as the T minus 9 minute hold in the launch countdown.

gliderpilotuk
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posted 11-13-2008 05:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Anyone else going to be on the causeway?

I've stayed on after the ASF show and will be on the causeway courtesy of Gator tours. Would be good to meet any other cS'ers.

Paul

Frederic Janik
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posted 11-13-2008 06:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Frederic Janik   Click Here to Email Frederic Janik     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Ahhhh lucky you. Enjoy!! - and beware of the gators.

Frederic

Rob Joyner
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posted 11-14-2008 05:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Paul, I'll be there! In fact, I'm leaving for KSC in just about 5 minutes!

Wearing all black today, ponytail and glasses. Say hello if you see me.

I'll be taking one of the last busses out to the causeway, just in case there is an early scrub so I have a better chance of retaining my LTT!

Rob

Mr Meek
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posted 11-14-2008 09:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mr Meek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This isn't so much launch viewing as launch listening. I'm going to most likely be on the road at liftoff. However, I'll be driving through the great state of Alabama with my ham radio. I've found a couple of lists of repeaters that retransmit the NASA audio, but both are several years old. Anyone have an up-to-date list?

Yes, I know. Listening to a shuttle launch on my ham radio is a new level of nerd. However, I feel that I'm among friends. Admitting you have a problem is the first step, right?

irish guy
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posted 11-14-2008 01:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for irish guy   Click Here to Email irish guy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hello fellow cS members. Just to let you know we find central Florida News 13 a great link to coverage of the launch. It has up to date news, weather, etc. and will begin live coverage in a hour or so. We are tuned in already in Ireland. Best wishes to the crew and to all you lucky folks in Brevard County tonight. Ben, James, Robert looking forward to the photos. See you in 2009. P.S. Siobhan and I are now married two weeks to be exact!!! so I have a new flight director

contra
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posted 11-14-2008 07:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for contra   Click Here to Email contra     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great launch.

Jay Chladek
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posted 11-14-2008 07:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great looking launch on TV. Nice to see it was more uneventful then a similar launch that took place on this date in 1969.

Of course it will be interesting to see how the cover door unit in the white room survived. That was a bit unusual.

irish guy
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posted 11-14-2008 07:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for irish guy   Click Here to Email irish guy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great launch, looking forward to the pictures, and the one of the moon and the pad. Would have loved to have been there, roll on 2009. Goodnight from Ireland, thanks for all the coverage, and looking forward to the mission...

gliderpilotuk
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posted 11-14-2008 11:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just got back after a 2.5hr drive back to Orlando.

The launch was spectacular, with the almost full moon rising behind the Titan gantry and lighting up the smoke trails. Shuttle was visible for over 10 minutes and SRB sep was clearly visible. This was my second launch in a row and I thought 124 was impressive, but this was something else. The suddenness of the sky lighting up after sitting there in the dark for 2 hours was astonishing. Truly a wonderful sight.

Got a few photos which I'll post tomorrow.

Looked for you Rob, but sadly couldn't find you.

Paul

KSCartist
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posted 11-15-2008 05:32 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KSCartist   Click Here to Email KSCartist     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What a launch! I've seen many up close since 1991 (that's why I moved here) but it never gets old.

NASA & DNPS did a great job of putting people in place. I only wish getting them out would be as efficient. We didn't get home to Titusville until 10:30. Bryan we should have gotten in line for the buses when we saw you.

My family now has a better understanding of why I enjoy this so much. They were very impressed and that isn't easy. Even my 15 month old grandson said "Wow!" He was a trooper staying awake past his bedtime but as soon as we got back to the car in the VC parking lot he crashed and went to sleep.

Jorge in honor of our partnership I toasted the launch by saying "vaya con Dios" - go with God. It was really special to see our artwork blaze a trail into space. Muchas Gracias Mi Amigo.

Prior to launch I had the pleasure of meeting Mario Runco. He signed my Space Shuttles The First 20 Years book. He lamented the fact that we might be walking away from the ISS to return to the Moon just as we're on the cusp of getting scientific return on our investment.

During the T-9 minute hold I met Tom Stafford and presented him with one of my 50 year patches. I mentioned that he had politely turned me down to design the ASTP patch "as the Soviet crew commander is an accomplished artist" but that I had persevered and the 126 crew was carrying (our) art. He congratulated me for hanging in there.

A special night that rivals my father and I watching Apollo 17 from next to the VAB. It's not only the event but who you share it with that makes the memory special. The local news mentioned how Shane Kimbrough used to watch launches with his grandfather from Titusville when he was a kid. Maybe one day my grandson will hold these days just as close.

Tim

KAPTEC
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posted 11-15-2008 06:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for KAPTEC   Click Here to Email KAPTEC     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Very beautiful and emotional explanation Tim. Thank you so much for remembering your far-off partner. I was watching it with my wife by NASA-TV on my computer and, believe it please, I said "Go with God" (in english) just in the lift-off. I hope I could meet you once there for a launch (I have been eight times in KSC and never joined one!) and I'm sure your grandson will follow his grandfather steps...

It has been a very special moment for me. Since my youth I wish to participate anyway with NASA. And finally I get it thanks to Tim. Now we have part of our talent in the space... and by the ISS and the history always be there. THANK YOU.

Cheers.
Jorge.

Mike Z
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posted 11-15-2008 08:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mike Z   Click Here to Email Mike Z     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
CONGRATULATIONS to you Tim and Jorge! Just knowing your patch is on the astronauts' suits inside Endeavour during the launch had to make your hearts beat faster and faster! You should be extremely proud that your talents got you both on the STS-126 misssion! To use one word, "WOW!"

Mike Z

Rob Joyner
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posted 11-16-2008 03:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Paul, I hear ya! KSC was quite packed. Most of the day was very bright and warm so I made a point to frequent anywhere with air conditioning! I can proudly say I am now a 10 time veteran of the SLE! Sim #4 is my favorite as it seems to have more of a bumpy ride. I got to say hello to Walt Cunningham who was just another face in the crowd at the Space Shop! And Tom Jones was signing his book there too. Mark Lee and Jon McBride spoke at the Astronaut Encounter stage late in the afternoon.

The painted shuttle models displayed at the Shuttle Plaza looked great. Tim, you did a fine job on both of yours! Most kept to a space theme while others were devoted to some of the local wildlife. One even used broken pieces of mirrior and another cut news clippings. All of them were very impressive.

Though there was some cloud coverage during mid-morning the sky got clearer as the day went on. At the causeway I could see more than a few stars in the sky, and that was standing about 30 yards from the floodlights west of the busses. And then the Moon rose. Ah! What a beautiful sight. A full Moon to the right and Endeavour to the left! The crowd roared as it was announced on the loudspeakers that everything had been cleared for launch.

I had the opportunity to speak with a gentleman from England who was standing next to me while waiting for the launch who had tried five other times to come over and experience a shuttle launch. One was an abort. One was due to a death in his family and the rest was because of last minute personal or job related changes before leaving for Florida. He told me that he had made a point to save enough holiday time at his job to finally come see a launch. He told his co-workers that if Endeavour didn't launch on time that no one would see him until it did! He added that his wife wasn't too thrilled about that! I told him about what to expect when the launch occurs, that he would see a lot of steam and exhaust, then the equivalent of a welder's torch as the shuttle cleared the tower and then the sound of the SRBs and main engines thirty seconds later. I told him about collectSPACE, so perhaps we'll have a new member once he returns home.

I watched Endeavour as she flew a more vertical and northerly direction than I had expected. The first few seconds of all shuttle launches at night are so bright I swear you could read the fine print at the bottom of a contract while facing away from the launch pad! Endeavour had risen well into the sky and the exhaust trail was quite distinct when the roar of the launch hit the causeway half a minute later. The sky was so clear that I watched her until I heard the call to MECO on the loudspeakers.

After the launch it was exactly 9:08 when I turned left at the traffic light at the KSC entrance on my way back home. When I finally reached U.S. 1, which I think is about a 6 mile stretch or so, it was 10:43! An hour and thirty five minutes bumper to bumper! My previous record wait was only a 'short' 55 minutes! And when I reached the drawbridge just before the U.S. 1 exit I looked in my rearview mirror to see what looked like a double strand of Christmas lights going back as far as the eye could see! I'm sure those and others continuing on to I-95 and/or Orlando waited a lot longer than I did!

For those who haven't been to a shuttle launch this only happens when the KSCVC is closing after a launch. If you attend a launch even during pre-dawn hours there will be no problem leaving as everyone will be staying there to enjoy the visitor complex. The later the launch, the more time it takes to leave. I don't know of the launch times of any future missions but I'm hoping they'll be in the morning hours!

Rob

spaceman48263
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posted 11-16-2008 10:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceman48263   Click Here to Email spaceman48263     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just got back tonight to cold and snow in Michigan! What a weekend, my first launch left me misty eyed and speechless. The first thing I did once I unpacked was watch the video with my children. From the visitor complex I was able to pick up the sound quite well. My wife was with me and is now a true space fan along with me. Once you see one you are hooked and just have to return for another one. I thought NASA did a wonderful job with everything that day. The ride out was very long. I was sitting watching the gas gauge creep down to E. I’m glad the gas station was just past route 1.

BMckay
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posted 11-17-2008 01:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for BMckay   Click Here to Email BMckay     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That was a spectacular launch. I didn't bring a camera so if anyone has a good shot from the Banana Creek (Saturn Five Center), could I get a copy?

I don't know what was worse on my flight down. Sitting behind a New York Jet fan with a Bret Favre tee shirt and seeing that all the way down (Patriots lost to the Jets the night before) or the two kids kicking my seat and their mother singing to them the whole way down. Newark NJ airport stinks..

I arrived in the afternoon on Friday and had a chance to attend a launch reception before the night activities. I got there very late but was able to talk to friends and talk to a current astronaut about his upcoming flight.

I arrived to KSC with very little traffic about 4 hours before hand. No problems parking either. I walked around had a snack and got in line to board the buses. Spent an hour or so waiting with some nice people and a JSC employee.

The Saturn Five area was packed but was able to meet up with Tim. Tim has a very nice family except the grandkid wasn't wearing any Red Sox garb. I said hi to some astronauts who were doing the family support or PR stuff that night. Saw many ex astronauts in the crowd. Everyone was having a great time.

I always find a nice spot to view the launches and this was not any different. The crowd was electrified as the countdown went under 9 minutes. The launch was spectacular. The best nighttime one I have seen. The sound and the sights were awesome. Did anyone else see the ripple effect as the orbiter went through a cloud? That would make a fantastic picture.

It did take me over two hours to go from KSC to Titusville but I just rolled down the windows and listen to some tunes. The Best Western in Titusville was a good place to stay.

Saturday was a totally free day. I caught Mark Lee at the Astronaut Encounter, took a look at the fine shuttle statues. Great job Tim. Yours was up there as one of the best. Spent lots of money at the gift shop too.

Went to the Space Shirt store and I guess I missed Jan Davis by a few minutes. That is a nice little store as well run by some very nice ladies. Shirts are different then KSC and they carry many back missions as well.

Then headed down to see Winston Scott talk and sign books in Melbourne. Winston is a great guy and if you do not own his book, shame on you. I went down with Gerhard and saw his museum in Germany via laptop. If you do not go and you live in Europe, shame on you. I plan on visiting in the next few years because I am not allowed to go back to KSC until I take the wife and kids to Italy, Ireland, Germany and England.

Then it was back to KSC and the HOF. They made some changes to the shuttle wing since I was there last (June). Overall they did a great job and it gave me ideas as to how to do my exhibit.

Flew back home on Sunday. Only one delay again in Newark- no flight attendant so the flight was delayed about a half hour.

What a way to spend my last trip to Florida. Thanks to my friends in Texas, Germany and Florida for making this a weekend to remember.

GACspaceguy
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posted 11-17-2008 02:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What can I add that has not been said already. The launch was outstanding! We were privileged to be at the Saturn V center for the launch (thanks Brian). What was one of the best parts of the launch countdown was when, with two minutes to launch, they come over the speaker system asked us to stand and join in the singing of the national anthem, the crowd cheers and moments later came the "rockets red glare". I love this country!

spaceman48263
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posted 11-17-2008 04:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for spaceman48263   Click Here to Email spaceman48263     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just a quick question. How do you get tickets to view a launch from the Saturn Five Center? I got a few shots while on tour earlier in the day. That would have been a sweet spot to see that bird fly!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-17-2008 04:37 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 spaceman48263:
How do you get tickets to view a launch from the Saturn Five Center?
The Saturn V Center is the VIP viewing site. You need to be invited to view a launch from there. You can try requesting an invite from your senator's office, otherwise you'll need to know someone on the crew or the mission management team.

Ben
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posted 11-17-2008 06:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ben   Click Here to Email Ben     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

The STS-126/ISS complex soar over a life-size replica of the Wright Flyer on the campus of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, FL on Nov. 17.

BMckay
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posted 11-18-2008 08:09 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for BMckay   Click Here to Email BMckay     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I am wondering if anyone caught Endeavour creating a ripple through a cloud as it launched on film?

Mr Meek
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posted 11-18-2008 05:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mr Meek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like spacewalker Heide Stefanyshyn-Piper has joined an elite club populated by such luminaries as Ed White who lost a thermal glove on his EVA.

I just flipped NASA TV on after I finished teaching lessons, and it looks like they're meeting with some good success. Other than the new satellite, that is.

Jay Chladek
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posted 11-19-2008 06:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yeah, a new satellite was created all right. Of course, considering how much grease was in that bag from the gun that leaked, I have to wonder if that might have been a blessing in disguise anyway?

jimsz
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posted 11-19-2008 10:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for jimsz     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I do enjoy the updates and try to catch NASA TV as often as I can.

Though, how many millions is it costing for this trucker in space mission? Installing toilets? greasing gears? The sooner will are out of the Shuttle program and hopefully the ISS, the better off we'll be.

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

posted 11-19-2008 11:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Mr Meek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
While I'm sure there's another thread suited to the debate over the ISS, I don't think it's fair to characterize this mission as just "a trucker in space mission." Really, this is among the basic types of missions that the shuttle was designed for. It's not glamorous, but it is necessary.

Though things like the ATV and Progress can partially fill the logistical/supply role, they cannot match the heavy lift capability of the shuttle. Nor can they get extra hands on board that are required to make these large changes to the ISS.

If we're going to go to Mars, we need to know better how to construct, live, and maintain in space. The ISS, though not a launchpad, is at least a test bed for our next steps into the solar system. Like so many things in the space program, it is not the most glamorous, but it does have its role.

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

posted 11-20-2008 06:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I concur. Before one can do the exciting stuff, one has to do the mundane stuff. People don't think about tasks like installation of toilets, water recycling facilities and additional equipment to support the long term occupation by six persons to be worth anything in the history of space flight. But, it has to start somewhere. There are A LOT of things being learned from these "trucker in space" missions and they have a lot of bearing on future missions to the moon and Mars.

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

posted 11-20-2008 10:05 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Mr Meek:
Looks like spacewalker Heide Stefanyshyn-Piper has joined an elite club populated by such luminaries as Ed White who lost a thermal glove on his EVA.
"Oh great," announced Piper as the bag moved beyond her reach, floating to the right and behind of the station. "We have a lost tool, um, I guess one of my crewlock bags was not transferred and it's loose."

Astronauts never swear or do they refrain themselves knowing that they're "on air"? Wonder which one is more difficult!

Chris.

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

posted 11-21-2008 12:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The second of four spacewalks planned for the STS-126 mission began at 11:58 a.m.

So, according to my records, this would be:
- the 300th spacewalk.
- the 198th US spacewalk.
- the 17th EVA for 2008.

Chris.


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