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Stuck Knob Causes Serious Window Damage To Atlantis

timothy posted about 5 years ago | from the for-want-of-a-nail dept.

NASA 291

FTL writes "While in orbit a metal knob floated between a window and the dashboard of Atlantis. Once back on Earth, the shuttle contracted, wedging the knob firmly in place and damaging the window. Initial attempts to free the knob have failed and engineers may need six months to disassemble that section of the orbiter. Given that the shuttle program will probably end next year anyway, such a delay might mean scrapping Atlantis early rather than repairing it. Efforts to remove the knob using less invasive techniques continue."

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291 comments

The Inanimate Carbon Knob! (5, Funny)

eldavojohn (898314) | about 5 years ago | (#28472645)

The article neglects to mention the extreme disappointment of John M. Grunsfeld who spent the majority of Mission STS-125 photographing a strange phenomenon he could witness through his window but could not detect on radar. A large knob-shaped object would move about above the atmosphere with an almost supernatural fluidity and change of speeds relative to the Earth. He neglected to mention it to his crewmates hoping that he had stumbled upon either the first contact with alien life or observed a new phenomenon he dubbed in his journal "Grunsfeld's Effect." Unfortunately the engineers at NASA have immortalized his name by calling the stuck debris "Grunsfeld's Knob" or "Grunsfeld's God." The engineers have also started referring to being duped as "being grunsfelded." Example: "I called up to order some of those damn Video Professor instructional DVDs and ended up with 8 of the stupid things. Man did I get Grunsfelded!"

Re:The Inanimate Carbon Knob! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472923)

Quit trying to be funny. Even Ellen Degeneres is funnier than you are, sycophant.

Let the real men make the funnies here.

p.s. NIGGERS.

Re:The Inanimate Carbon Knob! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473171)

I just heard some sad news on the talk radio...

http://www.newsday.com/entertainment/news/celebrity/ny-michaeljackson0626,0,57920.story [newsday.com]

Re:The Inanimate Carbon Knob! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473255)

He should have died before he went crazy and turned himself into a white pedo. At least he would have gone out respected as a talented musician.

Re:The Inanimate Carbon Knob! (1)

googlesmith123 (1546733) | about 5 years ago | (#28473157)

James Grundsfeld (previously known as James May).

Re:The Inanimate Carbon Knob! (1)

dziban303 (540095) | about 5 years ago | (#28473169)

I smiled. A little.

Aren't the windshields replaced all the time? (5, Interesting)

afidel (530433) | about 5 years ago | (#28472665)

Or is that only an outer protective layer? I know I've seen pictures of the pitting that micrometeors and paint flecks have caused on the Shuttles while in orbit, I just assumed they were made to be easily replaced.

Re:Aren't the windshields replaced all the time? (5, Informative)

pz (113803) | about 5 years ago | (#28473193)

Or is that only an outer protective layer? I know I've seen pictures of the pitting that micrometeors and paint flecks have caused on the Shuttles while in orbit, I just assumed they were made to be easily replaced.

The article isn't wholly clear, but implies that there are three layers of glass, only the outer one gets replaced. The inner ones have never been replaced on any shuttle. The innermost one is the most important for retaining the internal pressure, and is the one that has sustained damage.

And to be clear, if you read the article, it's obvious that the engineers working on this are SERIOUS and have thought of just about anything that slashdot readers have come up with. Drill/cut? Too high risk because of (a) vibrations transmitted to the window and microgrinding of the knob against the window and (b) metallic dust it will generate. Pressurize orbiter? Yep. For some reason, they think they can only get it to +3 PSI. Might help. Apply cold to the knob to shrink it? Yep. They tried dry ice. Didn't work. (My guess is that they'll try liquid nitrogen, too at some point.) They're planning on trying dry ice and pressurization at the same time. Apply downward pressure to the dash with a crobar? Probably very risky because of unknown damage it might cause to dash.

Once the knob is out, they'll make visual inspection of the remaining surface, including taking microscopic moldings to assess the damage. The pane is tempered, so scratches are a big problem, as they can lead to spontaneous, catastrophic failure.

Re:Aren't the windshields replaced all the time? (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | about 5 years ago | (#28473423)

Sounds like they'll just have to scrap this orbiter early.

Re:Aren't the windshields replaced all the time? (-1, Troll)

billcopc (196330) | about 5 years ago | (#28473425)

Why not just replace the whole damned window ? Or does that also require 26 engineers and twelve million dollars like every other NASA doodad ?

Re:Aren't the windshields replaced all the time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473643)

I wonder if it would be possible to use something that's abrasive enough to wear it away without applying enough pressure to cause substantial vibrations. Maybe something like a rotating wire brush.

Re:Aren't the windshields replaced all the time? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | about 5 years ago | (#28473717)

Have they tried a powerful excimer laser?

Re:Aren't the windshields replaced all the time? (2, Insightful)

seyyah (986027) | about 5 years ago | (#28473381)

Or is that only an outer protective layer? .... I just assumed they were made to be easily replaced.

No, sadly, the knob's outer, protective layer can not be easily replaced (cf circumcision).

Magnets. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472675)

Magnets are good tools.

Re:Magnets. (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | about 5 years ago | (#28473205)

So is leaving something there when it's stuck ;)

physics (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472683)

why not just put it in a vacuum chamber, warm it up, and slide it on out?

Re:physics (5, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | about 5 years ago | (#28472831)

why not just put it in a vacuum chamber, warm it up, and slide it on out?

What, you mean like they discussed in the article? They even came up with a better idea: instead of heating up the whole vessel, just freeze the knob with dry ice!

The options relating to the application of dry ice to shrink the knob have already been attempted, and failed. However, the same method, along with a pressurization of the Crew Module, may be enough to free the knob from its lodged position.

The only problem is the amount of pressurization that can be conducted in the OPF is far less than the pressure that played a part in allowing the knob to become embedded in the first place.

Pressurize crew module and dry ice on knob to TBD (To Be Determined) pressure. Pro's: Could allow for uniform structural deflection to increase gap between pressure pane and dashboard; enough to free up the knob non-destructively. Less potential for inducing further damage to the pane.

**UPDATE: The above option was selected on Thursday as the opening process for an attempt to remove the knob. The cabin will be pressurized to 3 psid, before an engineer will apply dry ice to the knob. This option is not deemed to be a likely solution, but more so the opening option that avoids additional damage to the window.**

Although it's lengthy, you should try reading the article next time. The guys at NASA are pretty clever.

Re:physics (1)

afidel (530433) | about 5 years ago | (#28472901)

I wonder if freezing the knob enough to make it brittle and shattering it is an option?

Re:physics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473191)

Yeah this was my thought too as soon as I read "dry ice". Just freeze it and smack it. I'm sure the reason why not is because the fragments will only cause more damage once in space.

Re:physics (1)

sdpuppy (898535) | about 5 years ago | (#28473633)

Movies aside, freezing things does not always make them brittle.

Dry ice at its freezing point is 194K; liquid nitrogen around 77K

I handle liquid nitrogen in my job; the only things that get brittle at that temperature tend to be plastics and materials with water (like your finger :-)).

Certain steels can become brittle and shatter at that temperature, but I figure that NASA probably plans worst case for all materials used in space craft and probably will not select a metal that will shatter...

Re:physics (2, Funny)

schon (31600) | about 5 years ago | (#28473003)

The guys at NASA are pretty clever.

Oh come on - it's not like they're rocket scientists or anything! :) :) :)

Re:physics (4, Funny)

Gilmoure (18428) | about 5 years ago | (#28473663)

I used to do tech support at Honeywell. Had real rocket scientists there. Called them my brilliant idiots.

Re:physics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473363)

Although it's lengthy, you should try reading the article next time. The guys at NASA are pretty clever.

Yeah, they can even convert vales in Inches to centimeters. oh wait.....

Re:physics (1, Insightful)

RichardJenkins (1362463) | about 5 years ago | (#28472869)

Why not just apply extremely localised extreme heat to critical areas on the knob, collapse it and remove the new shape?

Why not just pull it really hard?

Why not chisel it really hard ...etc.

You and me could think of a bunch of stuff; NASA could think of a bunch of stuff and properly assess how likely it is to work vs how likely it is to damage the shuttle vs how much it will cost and so on.

Re:physics (4, Informative)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 5 years ago | (#28473087)

FAO any other Monday morning quarterbacks, armchair rocket scientists, and other self-appointed experts and "why don't they just" merchants out there who never seem to consider that the people working on the thing might actually have thought about what they are doing, quoth TFA:

"Induced damage of the knob being wedged between the glass and the dashboard closeout panel structure, or from removal of the knob could result in unacceptable damage.

"Consequences of unacceptable damage to the glass pane: Replacing the pressure pane would result in a significant impact to ground schedule (potential 6+ month impact). Requires de-configuring dashboard structure and instrumentation to remove window assembly for refurbishment. Windshield pressure pane removal has never been performed at KSC.

"Knob removal must be performed carefully; exhausting all risk free options first, then attempting more intrusive (higher risk) options, if others fail."

Re:physics (1, Insightful)

billcopc (196330) | about 5 years ago | (#28473521)

That's the problem: many armchair rocket scientists have lost faith in NASA's ability to accomplish anything of value. They're a big money sink in a time when the budgets could be far more beneficially applied elsewhere. Do people give a flying fuck about Mars ? Not when there are innumerable large-scale problems here on earth.

Re:physics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473691)

WTF you talking about. Brilliant people don't always know all. Is it a metal knob? Is the pressure pane nonconductive? Is the dashboard metal or nonconductive?

EDM the phrackin thing out. Electro discharge machining, ground the knob itself or via the dashboard. 2 passes max. You can make a setup like a sytrofoam cutter and manually yank it through or hook it up to a stepper and driver or spring and tension it. The knobs gotta drop somewhere so they can certainly fish a wire around it if they can't go direct. If they're worried about other components, sleeve the wire where necessary.

And, I'm reading they have an entire freaking pressure setup? Good lord, they could inert gas the whole damn setup and go in with pressure suits if they didn't want to automate the cut. I love NASA, I frequently read their projections and briefings for my projects and the guys are generally damn brilliant (2nd to only some of the NSF machining setups I've read), but they need X factors on site to suggest things.

btw, it sounds as if it would be cheaper to go up again and remove it at an opportune time.

Re:physics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472991)

why not just put it in a vacuum chamber, warm it up, and slide it on out?

Reorganize those steps, and that sounds like an ideal friday night for a bachelor!

Re:physics (1)

Mr2cents (323101) | about 5 years ago | (#28473069)

So they cannot damage the glass.. Can they damage the dashboard?

Re:physics (3, Funny)

0100010001010011 (652467) | about 5 years ago | (#28473263)

Knobs do not belong in vacuum cleaners. And once it warms up, there's no pulling it out of anything. There was one bad evening I did get my knob suck it something. Don't mix up lube and super glue.

finally, a use for a dremel tool (2, Funny)

cats-paw (34890) | about 5 years ago | (#28472687)

they can borrow mine. I never use it.

Re:finally, a use for a dremel tool (5, Funny)

Crunchie Frog (791929) | about 5 years ago | (#28473041)

they can borrow mine. I never use it.

I read your comment before reading your title and assumed you meant your knob.

Re:finally, a use for a dremel tool (2, Funny)

maharg (182366) | about 5 years ago | (#28473329)

belly lol.. me too ;o)

Re:finally, a use for a dremel tool (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473403)

20 minutes with the cutting wheel and I'd have that thing out. I use mine all of the time.

Re:finally, a use for a dremel tool (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473669)

Sure!!!! spread knob flakes and grindings all over precious NASA electronic Equipment!

That will make the shuttle work real good, mmmmhuh

Obvious (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#28472705)

Once back on Earth, the shuttle contracted, wedging the knob firmly in place

Simple solution: take the shuttle back up. Others have done it before [theonion.com] .
     

Re:Obvious (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 5 years ago | (#28473181)

Once back on Earth, the shuttle contracted, wedging the knob firmly in place

Simple solution: take the shuttle back up. Others have done it before [theonion.com] .

TFA disagrees:

'Fly as is' is not an option, unknown damage and loads to the glass could result in failure during the flight, with no redundancy; dynamic failure could result in redundant pane failure.

Re:Obvious (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473251)

Doh! Stop ruining jokes with facts and logic. It's like going to lunch with a Vulcan.

NASA forgot low tech approaches? (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 5 years ago | (#28472721)

Saw. The one in the form of elastic cutting "wire".

Re:NASA forgot low tech approaches? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472797)

Saw. The one in the form of elastic cutting "wire".

Not sure what kind of saw you are talking about, the NASA personnel considered using a dentist drill. Why did they decide against it? FTFA:

Con's: Potential for tool vibration to be transferred through knob into window induce additional window damage. Debris release from cutting. Knob would only be cut enough for tech to yield the piece

Would the kind of saw you are talking about work without produce vibrations that could cause damage to the window?

Re:NASA forgot low tech approaches? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472841)

Yes, so long as it's a LAZER SAW

Re:NASA forgot low tech approaches? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473047)

In all seriousness... why not use a laser to cut it? Are they afraid that heating it up would cause it to expand more, and crack the window further (a concern not mentioned with the 'drill' approach, but certainly valid)?

Re:NASA forgot low tech approaches? (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 5 years ago | (#28473207)

The kind of saw that is basically just a wire with two loops at the end (by which you grab it). Hand operated, minimal vibrations (well, it may take a week or two...but they don't have shortage of personnel)

As for debris - powerful magnets + sealing off the area & industrial vacuum cleaner with HEPA filters?

Re:NASA forgot low tech approaches? (1)

Animats (122034) | about 5 years ago | (#28473083)

The problem is getting it out without dumping metal particles all over the place. But they'll think of something, probably something that involves a cutting tool and a suction system.

Re:NASA forgot low tech approaches? (1)

sznupi (719324) | about 5 years ago | (#28473129)

Powerful magnets tend to be good in collecting those... (coupled with some industrial "vacuum cleaner" and sealing off the area)

Re:NASA forgot low tech approaches? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473337)

You said that already.

!stuckpenis (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472749)

Tagged to avoid confusion

missed opportunity (4, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#28472751)

Title suggestion: "Shuttle has a Wedgie"
   

Space Knob: Astronauts Gone Wild (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472753)

In the event of a dildo we're not allowed to imply ownership, we have to use the indefinite article; "a" dildo, never "your" dildo.

mmmm ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472763)

I could eat a knob at night ....

Why not drill it? (0, Redundant)

inject_hotmail.com (843637) | about 5 years ago | (#28472803)

Might sound kinda kinky, but why not drill the stuck knob?

Make it look like Swiss cheese...should eventually collapse on itself. Use a magnet and vacuum to catch the filings.

Hey...it's not rocket science...oh wait.

Well, it works with dogs... (3, Funny)

hyades1 (1149581) | about 5 years ago | (#28472807)

Throw a bucket of cold water on it and the knob should slip right out.

Re:Well, it works with dogs... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472967)

Or a swift kick in the bollocks.

Re:Well, it works with dogs... (3, Funny)

multipartmixed (163409) | about 5 years ago | (#28473689)

How did you get a knob stuck in a dog?

For A Solution, Call +1, PatRIOTic (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472815)

the engineers who build RELIABLE Soyuz [energia.ru] spacecraft.

Yours In Socialism,
Kilgore Trout

Re:For A Solution, Call +1, PatRIOTic (1)

fiannaFailMan (702447) | about 5 years ago | (#28473281)

Mod up. Soyuz is still going strong since 1966. The ISS has two of them permanently docked to use as lifeboats. And yes, it was first developed by a socialist society. So what? Are our mods so socialistophobic that the mere sight of the word is enough to attract 'flamebait' and 'troll' mods?

Call a Cleatis the shadetree mechanic (1)

cockpitcomp (1575439) | about 5 years ago | (#28472817)

Really any grey-hared mechanic will have a trick odd-ball stuff like this. Or build a giant vacuum chamber / oven to expand the thing out. Or warp field bubble?

Re:Call a Cleatis the shadetree mechanic (1)

Bigjeff5 (1143585) | about 5 years ago | (#28473259)

I'd go with option C: warp field bubble.

Cletus can't provide enough assurances he won't break things in the extraction, and we currently don't have the technology to create a vacuum big enough that also replicates the conditions of space.

since the shuttle programming is so old (4, Funny)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 5 years ago | (#28472819)

and is underfunded and ending soon anyways, give atlantis the same proper ghetto treatment a contemporary of its time would receive, like 25 year old plymouth horizon: plastic sheeting and duct tape

also knock out a back tail light and finger daub "wash me" in the cosmic dust on its hood

Well... (2, Funny)

locoztx (1532715) | about 5 years ago | (#28472821)

it's knobody's fault. Sorry.

Blow it up (0, Redundant)

mykepredko (40154) | about 5 years ago | (#28472847)

Seriously, I mean increase the pressure inside the shuttle until you have the same differential as in space, which should cause the windows to expand just as they did in space and then pull out the knob.

myke

Re:Blow it up (1)

janeuner (815461) | about 5 years ago | (#28473085)

There are various components inside the crew module (for example, a CRT display) which enclose a high vacuum. The outer shell of these components must withstand a certain pressure differential - in this case, 14.7 psid outside the enclosure to 0 psid on the inside.

If they were to recreate the overall condition of being in space, they would have to compress the cabin to 29.4 psid. This would apply twice as much force to the CRT display enclosure - twice as much as it was designed for. It would be very likely that many such components would implode and spread the damage to every corner of the cabin.

If they do as you suggest, expect hundreds of millions of dollars in damage.

Re:Blow it up (2, Insightful)

Jherico (39763) | about 5 years ago | (#28473227)

Not to mention that a structure designed to take that differential in a zero gravity environment might not respond the same way to it under 1 gravity.

Re:Blow it up (1)

pz (113803) | about 5 years ago | (#28473211)

Seriously, I mean increase the pressure inside the shuttle until you have the same differential as in space, which should cause the windows to expand just as they did in space and then pull out the knob.

myke

Read the article. They've considered doing just that in a couple of different ways, using both cabin pressure, and local bladders inflated between dash and windshield.

Re:Blow it up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473229)

Fry: "How many athmospheres can the ship withstand?" Farnsworth: "Well, it's a space ship. So I'd say anywhere between zero and one."

blow it up (0, Redundant)

zmollusc (763634) | about 5 years ago | (#28472857)

Why not just pump 10 bar of pressure into the space scuttle so that the gap opens up again? It is supposed to take 1 atmosphere of pressure more than the outside, yes?

Re:blow it up (1)

janeuner (815461) | about 5 years ago | (#28473139)

It is supposed to take 1 atmosphere of pressure more than the outside, yes?

The pressure cabin? Yes. All the junk inside the Pressure cabin? Not likely...

Re:blow it up (1)

whoever57 (658626) | about 5 years ago | (#28473219)

Why not just pump 10 bar of pressure into the space scuttle so that the gap opens up again? It is supposed to take 1 atmosphere of pressure more than the outside, yes?

How many ways are there to say RTFA!

Re:blow it up (1)

Bigjeff5 (1143585) | about 5 years ago | (#28473305)

You must be new here.

Listen to the radio ads (4, Funny)

Chelloveck (14643) | about 5 years ago | (#28472859)

They need to call one of those chip-and-crack auto glass replacement people that I hear on the radio all the time. They come out to your workplace to do the job, and best of all, you only pay the insurance deductible!

Been there done that (5, Funny)

Tablizer (95088) | about 5 years ago | (#28472861)

I know how they feel: Toyota's quoting me $400 to fix a loose sun visor because they have to take the entire @&%#! side of the car apart to get to it.
   

Dissolve it (5, Interesting)

rally2xs (1093023) | about 5 years ago | (#28472865)

Acid.

Re:Dissolve it (5, Funny)

CarpetShark (865376) | about 5 years ago | (#28473261)

Don't you think dissolving the space shuttle is overkill?

I wanna be... (1)

Theodore (13524) | about 5 years ago | (#28472917)

your SLEDGEHAMMER!!!

Seriously though, looking at the pics,
How did something that big roam around anywhere in the shuttle? (shoot an engineer).
How could something so small do HOW MUCH DAMMAGE?!?!?!?! (shoot an engineer).
(look at the plans)... Shoot 100 accountants.

WD-40? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472953)

Works on the stuff I get stuck.

NASA: how to get your knob out... (1)

s0litaire (1205168) | about 5 years ago | (#28472957)

...the answer is simple.

If you can cut it out (vibration damage to the area.)

If you cant freeze it out.

how about a strong suction device and a bottle of some strong acid. Pop the acid and try and suck the knob till it comes.. out...lol ^_^

Or in reality.. just use the acid to burn some of the knob away and take it out. Make sure you've got some alkali handy to stop the reaction before it does an "Alien" on you and melt the whole way through the deck ...

Re:NASA: how to get your knob out... (1)

Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) | about 5 years ago | (#28473079)

You sound like some sort of expert on knob sucking.

Are you by chance a consultant? NASA could use your experience.

Re:NASA: how to get your knob out... (1)

LotsOfPhil (982823) | about 5 years ago | (#28473135)

Strong acid plus alkali produces a lot of heat.

it doesn't have to be in a vacuum (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472973)

Just pressurize the shuttle to two atmospheres and remove it.

in Sovjet Russia.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28472985)

...they would just pop it out with a screwdriver

Hm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473071)

Or they could just get a dremel in there and cut it.

Michael Jackson dead? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473099)

I just read that Michael Jackson was found not breathing and taken to hospital.

"Michael Jackson has been rushed to the hospital, according to a report.

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the pop legend was rushed to the hospital by the Los Angeles Fire Department. According to the Times, Jackson was not breathing when paramedics arrived and they performed CPR on him in the ambulance.

Reps for Jackson have not yet responded to ET's request for comment.

Keep checking back here for more details on this story as it develops. "

Six months to disassemble a window? (-1, Flamebait)

EWAdams (953502) | about 5 years ago | (#28473151)

The guys running NASA now are clearly not the guys who figured out how to rescue Apollo 13 in a matter of hours. Whoever designed the space shuttle are a load of overpaid useless wankers.

Oh, and regarding stuck knobs: WD-40.

Re:Six months to disassemble a window? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473551)

Right, because, like Apollo 13, this shuttle is in space, with three lives on the line, low power, high levels of carbon dioxide, chance of being lost in space forever, and will only be used insofar as getting people back to earth.

Wait, these are completely different things. With Apollo 13, they only had hours and everything they did was to get the people home safely. With that, calculated risks and jerry-rigging made the best sense. Upon splashdown, the whole craft became a museum piece. Atlantis is still a working shuttle with multiple missions ahead of it. Everything needs to be done to keep the shuttle in the best condition to prevent accumulation of damage over its remaining lifetime. This careful approach is the best way to keep flying safely.

pressure (0, Redundant)

ChristTrekker (91442) | about 5 years ago | (#28473153)

Since the thing slipped in there in part due to pressure differences, why not overpressurize the crew compartment? Or take the orbiter up on the 747 while pressurized? Maybe combined with dry-icing the knob, it will come out.

OT - sig broken (1)

XanC (644172) | about 5 years ago | (#28473279)

Doesn't look like there's anything there...

Re:pressure (1)

gparent (1242548) | about 5 years ago | (#28473597)

There's something you didn't try, and it was reading the fucking article.

Ohhh! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473199)

So it wasn't that some rocket scientist got his knob stuck in a widow?

Free Knob! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473237)

Thank god they got hubble fixed before this fleet falls apart.

The worst case has them replacing a pressure plane that would normally be replaced at a facility that closed over 6 years ago.

In many ways the shuttle is a living museum piece.

Dremel it out! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473239)

Just grind it to dust and vacuum it out.

Laser Cutter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473247)

Cutting would clearly work, the problem is that vibration from the cutting blade or drill could further damage the window.
SO - use a cutting method that doesn't produce vibration - Use a laser cutter.

Michael Jackson, dead at 50 (-1, Offtopic)

Gizzmonic (412910) | about 5 years ago | (#28473319)

I just heard the sad news on talk radio today. Michael Jackson, the talented pop star, was found dead in his Santa Monica hospital this afternoon. There were no other details. Even if you didn't like his plastic surgery addiction and kiddie fondling, you have to admit...he was truly an American icon.

How about a metal file to it? (1)

L3370 (1421413) | about 5 years ago | (#28473345)

Maybe I'm not understanding the complexity here, but unless that knob is made of the hardest substances known to man, wouldn't an electric saw... or even someone with a metal file and a lot of free time solve this problem? It looks like the angles would allow for it.

Sad (0, Redundant)

sexconker (1179573) | about 5 years ago | (#28473371)

Just yank on that bitch.
If shit breaks, fix it. You waste more time and money, along with what little dignity you have left, by sitting around discussing it.

If you can't yank it, cut it.
If shit breaks, see above.

If you can't cut it, melt it.
If shit breaks, see above.

If you can't melt it, dissolve it with acid.
If shit breaks, see above.

If you can't dissolve it, rust that bitch out.
If shit breaks, see above.

If you can't oxidize it, unscrew the window, take it out, and put a new window on since you're so fucking terrified.

If you can't do any of the above, just fly with the fucker in place. You're going into the same conditions that got it there. As long as the glass isn't cracked, you're good.

Stuck knob (4, Funny)

Hatta (162192) | about 5 years ago | (#28473389)

If this condition lasts for more than 4 hours, call a doctor.

Leave it till next time. (1, Insightful)

pentalive (449155) | about 5 years ago | (#28473435)

I wonder if they could just leave it in there until the next mission. It should come loose on orbit right?

Here's a lesson, never make parts that can break off out of something you can't easily cut. If the knob were
made of some kind of plastic a little acetone might have fixed the problem.

Why not simply cut the screw ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#28473443)

The picture shows that cutting the screw would easily let the knob twist free in 2 pieces.

All they need is some cutting wire so that they can get it around the screw and some work ...

cut knob into thirds, remove middle section (1)

vainvanevein (1428547) | about 5 years ago | (#28473595)

$1 million plz

Atlantis (0)

blind biker (1066130) | about 5 years ago | (#28473655)

What an undignified way to end.

You know you should go to bed, when... (5, Funny)

Hurricane78 (562437) | about 5 years ago | (#28473693)

...you read that as "Stuck Know Causes Serious Windows Damage To Atlantis", and think "How the hell do they know what OS they were using on that sunken island?"

I just know realized, that even my question does not make any sense...

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