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  STS-133: Viewing, questions, and comments (Page 2)

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Author Topic:   STS-133: Viewing, questions, and comments
alanh_7
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posted 09-14-2010 07:22 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for alanh_7   Click Here to Email alanh_7     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by GACspaceguy:
I just received my rejection e-mail for the KSC visitor center.
I just got my second rejection as well.

ELinder
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posted 09-14-2010 12:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ELinder   Click Here to Email ELinder     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Apparently they were still working thru the list, as I finally got an email, also saying they were all sold out.

mjanovec
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posted 09-14-2010 01:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Gator Tours is now listing the availability of causeway tickets at their website. You'll pay double the price, but it includes transportation to and from KSC from Orlando.

It's a great second chance for those who got shut out of the lottery for causeway passes. You'll view the launch from the exact same place as those who bought their causeway tickets through the KSC Visitor's Center.

GACspaceguy
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posted 09-14-2010 01:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by mjanovec:
Gator Tours is now listing the availability of causeway tickets at their website.
I really do not understand why Tour Companies should get tickets before the general public when the demand is so high. In the case of the last few launches they needed a lottery so why not allow the general demand to be filled. Does the Tour Company give refunds if the launch is scrubbed? And yes I am ranting because I did not get tickets.

capoetc
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posted 09-14-2010 08:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for capoetc   Click Here to Email capoetc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by GACspaceguy:
I really do not understand why Tour Companies should get tickets before the general public ...

I am not an expert on the details of Grey Line and Gator Tours (I think Dolphin Tours has been involved as well), but I know that they are not getting causeway tickets at the "expense" of the general public.

The tour companies use their own busses. The limitation on the number of causeway tickets sold is based upon the capacity of the KSC busses to carry people out to the site. If there were a need to evacuate everyone from the causeway area, then the busses woulod be in position to do that, which is why they do not make multiple trips to/from the visitors' center.

After the KSC tix have been sold, then the tour companies are allotted a certain number of "passes" so they can sell tickets to the launch, providing transportation with their own busses.

The catch is, once the bus departs from the pickup location in Orlando, then the ticket has been "used" -- if the launch is scrubbed, even before the bus arrives at KSC, then you would have to buy another ticket for the next launch opportunity.

With the KSC causeway tickets, the ticket has been "used" once the bus departs from the visitors' center (with you on board) -- that's why veteran shuttle launch attendees always wait for one of the last busses, just in case the launch is scrubbed early. If the launch is scrubbed, you can go straight to the ticket windows at the visitors' center and buy tickets for the next opportunity.

I hope that helps -- and, if I got anything wrong, someone please correct me.

Rob Joyner
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posted 09-14-2010 09:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From the Gray Line website:
There is no refund should the launch be scrubbed on the day of the tour. This tour may be canceled with full refund if the launch is canceled 72 (hours) prior to the set launch day; however there are no refunds for cancellations within 72 hours.

There will be a $35 PER PERSON transportation fee for EACH rescheduled return to the space center with Gray Line.

I've went with Gray Line a few times. Of course, things can change, but here are a few pros and cons that I've experienced:

Pros:

  • Once at KSC, you board the Gray Line causeway-bound bus without having to wade through the long KSC bus line.

  • After launch, you're taken back to your original pickup site directly, getting a big head start on KSCVC outbound traffic.

  • If there is a scrub, you're guaranteed the option of rescheduling, without the fear of experiencing a KSC LTT sellout.

  • You can call 72 hours before launch and get a 100% refund if you find that you cannot go, (I just called them to re-verify that).

  • Just like KSC, you're given second day access within seven days to return and enjoy the VC, though transportation charges would apply if returning via Gray Line bus.
Cons:
  • Cost is about twice as much as KSC tickets.

  • You're not given much time, if any, to take in the VC before having to board the causeway bus on launch day, and absolutely none after leaving the causeway.

  • You must go through a Gray Line security check/bus sweep at KSC prior to going through KSCVC security.

mjanovec
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posted 09-15-2010 02:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rob Joyner:
You must go through a Gray Line security check/bus sweep at KSC prior to going through KSCVC security.

When I used Gray Line in April, they dropped you off at the Visitor's Center, then took the bus over for a security check (with nobody on board). So the customers only experienced one security check...when we went through the turnstiles at the VC. By the time we were ready to re-board the bus for the ride out to the causeway, the bus had already gone through security. The only downfall that was you couldn't leave anything on the bus while strolling around the VC. You had to take everything with you.

Rob Joyner
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posted 09-15-2010 10:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If anyone tried to purchase a Gray Line VIP causeway ticket but wasn't able to get through then do it NOW! I just happened to try again at about 10:50am and got one!

DC Giants
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posted 09-15-2010 08:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for DC Giants   Click Here to Email DC Giants     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Got lucky and got VIP tickets this morning through Grayline! I had to use their corporate web page to get in though.

gliderpilotuk
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posted 09-16-2010 03:04 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You can always try the sharks on eBay. Gotta love the b-s they come up with: "I am not able to attend, my bad luck is your good." A rapid change of heart within 24hrs of them going on sale. $800 seems the highest for a causeway ticket.

blacklion1
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posted 09-20-2010 11:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for blacklion1   Click Here to Email blacklion1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I understand that STS-133 roll out will commence at 8pm tonight. Does any one know what dictates when the shuttle leaves the VAB to begin it's journey to the pad?

KSCartist
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posted 09-20-2010 12:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for KSCartist   Click Here to Email KSCartist     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I believe it's called "first movement" when the transporter with the stack on top starts to roll.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 09-20-2010 01:59 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Close... the term is actually "first motion" and as it implies, it's the time when the crawler transporter first starts tracking forward.

As to what dictates the time, NASA prefers to roll overnight when the weather is usually more stable, but generally they target first motion at 12:01 a.m.. The 8 p.m. start time is to accommodate Kennedy Space Center employees and their families who, through a lottery process, received tickets to watch first motion and the first part of the rollout from bleachers near the turn basin.

Walter II
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posted 09-22-2010 08:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Walter II   Click Here to Email Walter II     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have posted some photos from Monday's rollout of Space Shuttle Discovery. It was amazing being able to witness the historic event.

P.S. Robert, if you ever need any help covering these events, I'm available. Haha

Robert Pearlman
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posted 09-24-2010 01:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here's a short video from my tour of Pad 39A to photograph Discovery. This shows the ride on the elevator to the 255-foot level.

Ben Cooper is among the other photographers shown in the video.

Rob Joyner
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posted 10-19-2010 04:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rob Joyner   Click Here to Email Rob Joyner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just confirmed my pick-up site with Gray Line Orlando and learned they will be selling 100 $120 VIP causeway tickets online Wednesday morning, October 20, at 10:00 AM! They have pick-up sites in Orlando and Titusville.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-26-2010 11:50 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 Hosts Tweetup During Upcoming Space Shuttle Mission

NASA will give 50 Twitter followers the opportunity to go inside the heart of a space shuttle mission during a Tweetup Tuesday, Nov. 9, at the agency's Johnson Space Center. Space shuttle Discovery is scheduled to launch on an 11-day mission to the International Space Station on Nov. 1 at 4:40 p.m. EDT.

Tweetup participants will tour the center; view mission control and astronauts' training facilities; and speak with managers, flight directors, trainers and astronauts. The participants also will meet the team behind the tweets on @NASA and @NASA_Johnson.

"The Tweetup attendees will get to visit the home of mission control during one of the last two scheduled shuttle flights," said Stephanie Schierholz, social media manager at NASA Headquarters in Washington. "In addition, they will get to share their experience of the excitement of human spaceflight with their followers around the world."

Registration opens at 10 a.m. EDT on Tuesday, Oct. 26, and closes at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 28. NASA will select participants randomly from those who register online.

In addition to this mission Tweetup, NASA has invited 150 Twitter followers to a two-day event Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 for the launch of shuttle Discovery.

neke
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posted 10-28-2010 01:06 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for neke   Click Here to Email neke     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Just bought a VIP ticket from Gray Line/Gator Tours. Apparently they have just released a handful of them.

teopze
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posted 10-28-2010 02:03 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for teopze   Click Here to Email teopze     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by neke:
Just bought a VIP ticket from Gray Line/Gator Tours.
Is it worth the $120 or is it similar to watching the launch from Titusville?

Edit. I bought it anyway ...

MarylandSpace
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posted 10-28-2010 02:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MarylandSpace   Click Here to Email MarylandSpace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Driving down to the Cape tonight. Got a Gator Causeway ticket, staying in Titusville. Hope to see/meet many of my cS friends.

irish guy
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From: Kerry Ireland
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posted 10-28-2010 03:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for irish guy   Click Here to Email irish guy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Safe travels to everyone from cS on there way to Brevard Co. over the weekend. Enjoy, share your stories with us, keep the tripods steady and have one or two for me!!

Rob Joyner
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posted 10-28-2010 09:54 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 teopze:
Is it worth the $120 or is it similar to watching the launch from Titusville?
Worth every single penny. This is nothing like viewing from Titusville. You'll be about six miles from the pad and will clearly see Discovery lift off the pad right in front of you. If this is your first viewing from the causeway, I'm sure you will be talking about this for the rest of your life.

jasonelam
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posted 10-29-2010 10:46 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for jasonelam   Click Here to Email jasonelam     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Found out this morning that one of my wife's cousins is getting married this weekend in Florida and are gonna start their honeymoon by watching the launch. What a way to start a marriage!

Fezman92
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posted 10-29-2010 11:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fezman92   Click Here to Email Fezman92     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Very cool!

Tykeanaut
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posted 10-29-2010 12:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by teopze:
Is it worth the $120 or is it similar to watching the launch from Titusville?
$120! Am I confused here? When I saw STS-106 launch in 2000 I had KSC viewing pass but it did not cost anything like that.

mjanovec
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posted 10-29-2010 01:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mjanovec   Click Here to Email mjanovec     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tykeanaut:
$120! Am I confused here? When I saw STS-106 launch in 2000 I had KSC viewing pass but it did not cost anything like that.

They are talking about tickets purchased for the Gray Line Tours, which includes a causeway pass and transportation to and from Orlando.

teopze
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posted 10-30-2010 10:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for teopze   Click Here to Email teopze     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
If the shuttle fails to launch during this launch window, when is the next one? Thanks!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-30-2010 11:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The next window opens on or about Dec. 1 and is only a few days. After that, NASA would be looking at the same February 2011 window currently targeted for STS-134.

Blackarrow
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posted 10-31-2010 01:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Blackarrow     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
At the time of launch on Wednesday 3rd November, will Florida still be 4 hours behind GMT? As of Sunday evening, the UK has turned the clocks back one hour and we're now on GMT. I want to avoid confusing the time-zones and missing the launch on TV by an hour!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 10-31-2010 01:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Daylight Savings does not end in the U.S. until Sunday, November 7, 2010, at 2:00 a.m. So, if STS-133 launches before then, then yes, GMT is four hours behind EDT.

spacefan JC
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posted 11-02-2010 07:32 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spacefan JC   Click Here to Email spacefan JC     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Robert Pearlman:
GMT is four hours behind EDT.
GMT will be 4 Hours ahead of EDT.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-02-2010 08:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I knew that... I was just seeing if you were paying attention.

(Thanks for catching my error...)

spacefan JC
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posted 11-02-2010 08:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for spacefan JC   Click Here to Email spacefan JC     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
No worries. I have avoided this topic until now, as 133 is the first launch since I moved back to the UK from the US, and no longer have 24/7 NASA TV on tap. I'm going to have to find a live stream somewhere to watch it, as I was supposed to be there in person for this launch. Totally jealous of all of the US members, and those lucky enough to be travelling to see it!

ejectr
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posted 11-02-2010 08:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ejectr   Click Here to Email ejectr     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
For NASA TV go here...

GACspaceguy
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posted 11-03-2010 06:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well it looks like we will not be making this launch; prior commitments require me back in Georgia tomorrow.

We had a good day yesterday here, we had time to spend with our friend Brian at the Astronaut Hall of Fame, also we met Wayne Hale and his wife in the space store at KSC (they were picking up items for the grand kids) and purchased a 4D Saturn V at the store there as well.

Wayne Hale has always been as role model for me, the way he would conduct his press conferences and the manner in which he answered difficult questions has allowed me to learn and apply the same approach. The encounter was very cordial and although short (we did not want to be a bother, just wanted to introduce ourselves) it was wonderful to talk to one of my space program heroes, which in of itself was worth the trip!

MarylandSpace
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posted 11-03-2010 12:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MarylandSpace   Click Here to Email MarylandSpace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Patiently waiting in Titusville but found a great value in purchasing a year long pass to KSC for $56.

irish guy
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posted 11-03-2010 02:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for irish guy   Click Here to Email irish guy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hang in there Garry, wish I was joining you for a beer or two. Just spoke with some friends from Ireland who also have run out of time and are heading for the Airport home tomorrow. We have been lucky, never made the trip without seeing one. Be sure to drop into John Nolan's Irish bar in Cocoa Beach while you're waiting. Jimmy, are you in Florida or home again?

FullThrottle
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posted 11-03-2010 07:11 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FullThrottle   Click Here to Email FullThrottle     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I made it down to Florida from the other side of the US (Washington State) and anxious for the shuttle to launch! Never seeing or dealing with a shuttle lifting off its been an interesting experience hanging day by day as the scrubs go by.

NASA says its a GO for tomorrow (at least the countdown) but from my perspective the weather has been great this whole week but pouring down rain right now and the weather forecast predicts heavy rain and thunderstorms for tomorrow.

I'm desperately hoping it goes! I have causeway tickets and have taken over a week off of work to make this trip of a lifetime happen!

My question is...

What are the go/no go weather conditions? I understand from what the NASA people have said at KSC it's about 30% odds of it lighting off tomorrow.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-04-2010 07:34 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 FullThrottle:
What are the go/no go weather conditions?
See: Space Shuttle Weather Launch Commit Criteria and KSC End of Mission Weather Landing Criteria (PDF)

capoetc
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posted 11-04-2010 08:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for capoetc   Click Here to Email capoetc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Man, with the postponement of STS-133 launch until Friday at 3:04 pm, it's looking more and more like I might be able to see the launch.


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