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  Armstrong Flight Research: Mate/Demate Device

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Author Topic:   Armstrong Flight Research: Mate/Demate Device
Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 30259
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 04-30-2014 11:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On April 29, 2014, NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center awarded a contract to Pantano Demolition, Inc. of Manteca, Calif., to demolish the Shuttle Mate/Demate Device used to load and offload the orbiters from the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft.
Construction of the MDD was completed in late 1976. It was first used during mate-demate operations with the prototype orbiter Enterprise during the Approach and Landing Tests (ALT) in 1977. It has been used for all post-landing and SCA mating operations at Dryden since the ALT program.

APG85
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Posts: 266
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Registered: Jan 2008

posted 04-30-2014 12:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for APG85     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Too bad they can't leave it in place. 50 years from now it would be a neat piece of history and I imagine the environment out there is not very corrosive...

onesmallstep
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Posts: 733
From: Staten Island, New York USA
Registered: Nov 2007

posted 04-30-2014 03:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for onesmallstep   Click Here to Email onesmallstep     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I sympathize with keeping the MDD intact but you can't keep every item of shuttle history. Maybe a plaque/sign with a photo would suffice; even a small section displayed at the Armstrong Center's museum/visitor's center.

Besides, the space occupied by it can be reused for future projects.

JBoe
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Posts: 468
From: Churchton, MD, USA
Registered: Oct 2012

posted 04-30-2014 03:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for JBoe   Click Here to Email JBoe     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I agree, too bad it has to be taken down. But, what would they ever do with it? And it would take more money to reconfigure it anyways.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 30259
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 08-25-2014 05:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
collectSPACE
Mate-Demate demolition: Tower used to lift space shuttles being dismantled

The historic steel tower that for 30 years was used to mount NASA space shuttles atop jumbo jets to fly them cross-country after they landed in California is now being demolished.

The gantry-like, gray and red Mate-Demate Device (MDD) at the NASA Armstrong (formerly Dryden) Flight Research Center in southern California stood for four decades. Now, three years after the shuttle program ended and six years since it last supported the turnaround of an orbiter landing at Edwards Air Force Base, the 110-foot (34-m.) structure is disappearing from the dry lake bed's skyline.

"It's sad to see something like this go, especially because it has a lot of history," said George Grimshaw, the center's last shuttle landing and recovery manager, in an interview with collectSPACE. "There is really nothing like it around. Yet, at the same time, you just can't have facilities sitting around unused, wasting away."

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