Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Shuttle Launch Postponed To July 4th

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the very-patriotic dept.

122

mkosmo writes "NASA has yet again delayed Space Shuttle Discovery from launching due to growing weather conditions. Next launch attempt is the afternoon of the 4th of July." From the article: "Windows of opportunity are determined by the path of the orbiting international space station, the shuttle's destination. With each passing day, the time for a launch gets earlier by 22-1/2 minutes. That could be good news for NASA because summer thunderstorms are less likely to be a problem earlier in the day."

cancel ×

122 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Lets just hope (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15647939)


there arn't any billion dollar firework displays

god speed

Re:Lets just hope (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648095)

Lets just hope there arn't any billion dollar firework displays

I saw the phrase "Windows of opportunity" and thought "Those poor astronauts are headed big blue screen up above."

Re:Lets just hope (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648422)

Frankly, a successful launch is a far more impressive firework display than any of the traditional fare. Especially if you're watching from down wind.

Re:Lets just hope (1)

Kardall (886095) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648602)

You missed his point I think... He meant that it will BE a billion dollar firework in the sky... "boom" get it? :P

Fireworks (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15647940)

I know I'm ready to see some.

Re:Fireworks (1)

buswolley (591500) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648166)

Yeah I wouldn't mind if the shuttle never launches again...IF(!!!) we would replace it with a better technology.

travel the cosmos without any gadgetry? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15647954)

some say it can be done in the wink of an eye.

for many of US, the only way out is up.

don't forget, for each of the creators' innocents harmed (in any way) there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/US as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile will not be available after the big flash occurs.

'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi life0cidal glowbull warmongering execrable.

some of US should consider ourselves very fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate.

it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc....

as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis.

concern about the course of events that will occur should the corepirate nazi life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order.

'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

Tempting Fate (3, Funny)

dsraistlin (901406) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647955)

I like fireworks and all but is this not just tempting fate as across the US lots of small rockets will be launched for our enjoyment as we wait and watch them explode.

Re:Tempting Fate (4, Funny)

bcat24 (914105) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648133)

Ah, but it's a way to appease fate, not tempt it. All the little rockets are a sacrifice to the God of Explosions. They make it safe for the Big Rocket to launch.

Re:Tempting Fate (1)

dragons_flight (515217) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648428)

Well, in that case they have their timing wrong. They are sending the shuttle up in the afternoon and most fireworks displays aren't until the evening. Let's hope the God of Explosions doesn't get impatient and decide to set off a big one early.

Re:Tempting Fate (1, Interesting)

Chris Daniel (807289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648261)

The way I look at it, the more rockets you launch in one afternoon that explode, the less likely the shuttle will go boom. That's how probability works, right? Right, guys? Guys?

Interesting? (1)

Chris Daniel (807289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648532)

Great moderating there.

Re:Tempting Fate (2, Funny)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648764)

That's why I take a bomb along on ever flight. There's never been a recorded case of two bombs being on the same flight.

In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (3, Interesting)

apathy maybe (922212) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647956)

I find it funny that the Russians pick a date and launch on that date, but the Yanks pick a date and launch 5 weeks later. The USA worries too much about wind and rain, sure a hurricane might upset the launch, but a bit of rain? It is a massive thing the shuttle. Does anyone know how many deaths the Russian (and USSR) space program has had? Is that more or less then the USA one?

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (5, Informative)

wesley96 (934306) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647978)

It's a bit of apples-to-oranges comparison. Russians do not currently operate a shuttle fleet. They launch the much smaller Soyuz / Progress vehicles, which in turn need less stringent launch conditions.

That, and... (0)

Rachel Lucid (964267) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648194)

Let's not forget that the US has had some high-profile explosive endings to more than a few shuttle missions (and plenty damn recently in the history of the program, too)

We're KINDA keen on only killing Americans and associated foreigners we haven't invested millions in already.

Re:That, and... (1)

crerwin (971247) | more than 8 years ago | (#15649220)

Where do you get your statistics? By more than a few you mean a total of two. By plenty damn recently in the history of the program you mean one (or half of all of them since you like to pretend that we're talking about a large quantity) was 5 years after the first launch, which happened 25 years ago. I'm not sure what point you're trying to make, but your evidence is wrong.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Informative)

Mike Peel (885855) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648480)

... but when they did have a shuttle (the Buran), it launched (once) in poor weather conditions (going off Wikipedia [wikipedia.org] ).

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (0)

mulhollandj (807571) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648021)

Here is a great analogy of Russian thinking vs US thinking. Americans realized that they couldn't right with a pen in space so they spent millions of dollars developing one that could. The Russians just used a pencil.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648029)

And here is another analogy. When russia sent their men to the moon, they used poop with sugar to power their rockets, but america spent all their money on liquid oxygen and crap like that.

What do both your and my analogy share? they're both false, neither happened in reality.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (4, Informative)

znu (31198) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648030)

Yes, the illustration you provide is simple, clear, and wrong [snopes.com] .

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Informative)

Eric Smith (4379) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648039)

Amusing but false. Both the US and Soviet manned space flights used pencils until 1968, after which they both used the pressurized Fisher pen, which was privately developed by Fisher without any government funds.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (4, Informative)

cdrudge (68377) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648071)

Myth: Americans realized that they couldn't right with a pen in space so they spent millions of dollars developing one that could. The Russians just used a pencil.

Fact: Both Americans and Soviets initially used pencils.

Fact: The Americans (and probably the Russians as well) realized that having all these little broken tips floating around in space probably wasn't a good idea.

Fact: Graphite can conduct electricity, so having the graphite dust floating around wasn't good either.

Fact: The wood and graphite would burn easily in a oxygen rich enviroment

Fact: Fisher Pens developed the space pen on their own using their own capital. Only after developed a working pen that resolved the above issues (as well as a few more) did they pass it on to NASA to evaluate.

Fact: Both NASA and the Russian space agency have used the space pen in flights since 1968.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648195)

Fact: Both NASA and the Russian space agency have used the space pen in flights since 1968.
This is not a fact, this is clearly a false statement.

From the Pedro Duque's diary [esa.int] : "I am writing these notes in the Soyuz with a cheap ballpoint pen... Seeing my astonishment, he [my Soyuz instructor] told me the Russians have always used ballpoint pens in space."

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (3, Interesting)

Ruie (30480) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648241)

Another interesting tidbit that you might not know, is that Soviets never made their own ballpoint pens - they had quality issues with the size of the small metal ball that goes into one.

Instead, the balls were manufactured in East Germany (which was under communists not as long as Russia).

Even then, one sometimes had to file away a little metal at the end of the tube so it does not scratch paper when writing. This got resolved with time - either they fixed the process or (just as likely) switched to imports.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648522)

Fact: Astronauts are mammals.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Insightful)

thewiz (24994) | more than 8 years ago | (#15649375)

Fact: Fisher Pens has received quite a bit of free PR in the last 38 years.

I'm sure this has more than made up for their development costs.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648072)

... they couldn't right with a pen ...

Learn English.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (5, Informative)

tftp (111690) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648056)

Russian space program lost 4 people in missions, in two Soyuz accidents in 70's, all on descent (one parachute failure when USSR leaders scheduled a flight for a national holiday, for political reasons, instead of launching when ready; and one outer air valve failure when they were brave/foolish enough to descend without light spacesuits.)

US space program lost 14 people in missions, in two Shuttle accidents, one on launch and another on descent.

Both programs had various accidents on the ground, not in missions.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Informative)

Rudolf (43885) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648266)

US space program lost 14 people in missions, in two Shuttle accidents, one on launch and another on descent.

And let us also remember the three lost in the Apollo 1 fire.

Here's a link to information at NASA:
http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/image_ feature_255.html [nasa.gov]

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

sconeu (64226) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648393)

What part of "Both programs had various accidents on the ground, not in missions." doesn't apply to Apollo 1?

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

Rudolf (43885) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648547)

What part of "Both programs had various accidents on the ground, not in missions." doesn't apply to Apollo 1?

The part that assumes "on the ground" and "mission" are mutually exclusive. Apollo 1 is a mission.

From the NASA site:
The AS-204 mission was redesignated Apollo I in honor of the crew.

(http://history.nasa.gov/Apollo204/index.html [nasa.gov] )

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648739)

Is it really a road trip, if your car explodes in the garage?

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15649370)

Technically, the fire occurred during a simulated countdown, the actual launch wasn't until February 21.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (0)

rjmars97 (946970) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648267)

If you count deaths on the ground, the USSR would have far more fatalities. Here is just one such example [wikipedia.org] . Apollo 1 is the most severe ground accident for the US, as far as I know.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648669)

one parachute failure when USSR leaders scheduled a flight for a national holiday, for political reasons, instead of launching when ready

Thank God that's totally different [suntimes.com] than the present situation.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

The MAZZTer (911996) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648078)

Well I don't think a lightning strike on the Shuttle would be good...

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

st1d (218383) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648320)

No, but IIRC, lightning is only part of the problem. Ice, wind gusts, etc., all come into play. Taken alone, they're each fairly minor (lightning won't necessarily destroy the shuttle on it's own, but even "minor" skin damage might increase reentry risks), but there's no real good reason to force the schedule.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Informative)

sconeu (64226) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648399)

Not really applicable, as they're two different birds, but Apollo 12 took a lightning strike just after liftoff.

I imagine the weather is a bit different... (3, Interesting)

ChePibe (882378) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648106)

As someone who grew up in Florida, I can attest to the fact that random, intense thunderstorms occur practically everyday in the summer. It's amazing to watch. One moment, all looks well outside. The next, gloomy and overcast. Then, it appears that the very wrath of God has come down upon you - these are serious storms with very strong gusts, lots of lightning, heavy rains, and a bit of hail from time to time. Thirty minutes later, the storm ends, the sun comes out, and it's all good and fine - only even more humid. It's fairly unpredictable. This is why native Floridians don't take Tropical Storms all that seriously - they leave through miniature versions of them frequently in the summer, and they know how to handle them. It's the snowbirds that freak out.

I imagine weather patterns in Florida are a lot more difficult to predict than they are at Russian launch sites.

Re:I imagine the weather is a bit different... (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648808)

You forgot the tornado's. :)

    I lived in Florida for years. Some of those storms are awesome. Blinding rain, several lightning strikes per minute, heavy winds.

    The house I grew up in was hit by lightning more times than I can remember. I remember sometimes (at least a few times a summer) lightning would strike the house, and then arc inside the house from the stove to the kitchen sink.

    Once, in one of the freak storms you're describing, I was driving up US Hwy 19 between Homosassa and Crystal River (i.e., middle of freakin' nowhere). It went from just a little rain to blinding rain where I slowed to about 10mph because I could no longer see the vehicle that was about 5 carlengths in front of me. In the sudden darkness, rain started blowing through the drivers window seals. That was odd, since the windows didn't leak. A couple seconds later, something HIT the drivers side of my car. Like, I thought someone had bumped into me in the rain, but I couldn't see anything. In less than a mile, the storm cleared, and I pulled over. There were no visible marks on my car. The next day in the paper, they showed a picture of the roof that had been blown off a building and wrapped around the power lines. That was exactly where I experienced what I described above.

    Ya, when tropical storms blow through, we usually check to make sure there's some beer in the fridge. Everything else is handled on an as-needed basis. Generally, if the power goes out, it doesn't go out for long. Even hurricanes are the same way. They're just big thunderstorms. :)

    I evacuated someone a couple years ago. The power was out, the windows were leaking because of the wind blowing the rain towards his house (multi-million dollar house, and it leaked). He couldn't drive his car because there were trees down. I happened to have a 4wd SUV. Crossing the bridges (Tampa to St. Pete) was a little touchy but not bad. I got around downed trees and debris in the road with no problem, but his Porsche wouldn't have done quite so well.

    In one of the hurricanes that year, a friend lost the solar water heater panels for his pool. They heard them flapping around for a few minutes, and then saw them flying down the street.

    With all that said, I'm moving back out there. My girlfriend has lived in LA her whole live, and has never experienced a Florida thunderstorm. She's terrified of living through a thunderstorm. I already told her, "Don't worry". We're shopping for the house right now, but one of my qualifications is for it to be out of the flood zones. Oh, one of those pesky things that people forget about until their house gets flooded. Lots of the brand new houses that we've found online so far are so low, the first good storm that comes through will flood their houses. I can't believe people are still building houses in these areas, but it seems that they're trying to build everywhere lately.

Re:I imagine the weather is a bit different... (1)

saider (177166) | more than 8 years ago | (#15649360)

We're shopping for the house right now, but one of my qualifications is for it to be out of the flood zones. Oh, one of those pesky things that people forget about until their house gets flooded.

All those jokes about people buying Florida swampland are true. Only now those people have built houses on that swampland and are making millions.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (3, Informative)

djupedal (584558) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648135)

>...a bit of rain...

The larger tank used to be painted white, until they thought about how heavy that extra coat of paint was, and how the primer color could be used to help heat the main tank on the ground. Now, calculate how much weight 'a bit of rain' would add to an already dew moistened tank and how that would require an immediate recalibration of many main systems. On the surface, it does seem as if NASA overthinks something as simple as punching a hole in the clouds, but the very nature of this particular roman candle is such that there are a myriad of complex issues and sub-systems all demanding attention. Ignore one and what looked simple while at rest can quickly become an unharmonious rage by the ghost in the machine...

I think the only ones that have any idea the cost in lives paid at Balkinor are the families left without sons/brothers/fathers/husbands/uncles.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (5, Informative)

mdmoery (875902) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648142)

Shuttle has to worry about rain because, unlike the Russians, the shuttle heat shield is 1) exposed during the entire ascent instead of being tucked safely between rocket stages and 2) is made of silica glass that is glued on to the orbiter's belly. Rain=BAD

lightning is the problem .. Re:In Soviet USA .. (4, Interesting)

rs232 (849320) | more than 8 years ago | (#15649221)

"Shuttle has to worry about rain because .."

It isn't rain but lightning that is the problem. The column of ionized gases ejected from a vehicle in assent is highly conductive and makes for a very good earth. Apollo 12 [wikipedia.org] was hit twice in just such an incident. The strike affected the parachute deployment system among other things. They didn't know for sure if it would actually work until the final moments of the descent.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

Breakfast Pants (323698) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648155)

I did not realize that the soviets and the US have identical programs in every meaningful way so that a metric like "who has had more deaths" means anything about whether we should launch in the rain or not. I mean, wow; we don't even have to consider who has had more launches in addition?

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

iconeternal (889316) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648324)

we take the shuttle catastrophies seriously. we've had two. I live Across the river from the cape in titusville, which is one of the couple of cities that provide NASA-KSC's life force. A good percentage of Titusville's jobs come from the space industry, from Lochead Martin, Boeing, United Space Alliance, and NASA itself.

When the columbia broke up, I can't even describe to you the mood in the town. We were all shellshocked. The space industry employees seemed as if a member of their family had died. They were all speechless.

Every person at NASA feels like they're sending their children into space. If the conditions aren't PERFECT, they'll stop the countdown. I can't even imagine what another catastrophe would do to those employees, or this entire town. Even with the eight lives and billions of dollars on the line, there is so much more to lose.

Anyway, don't forget the climate differences between Cape Canaveral and Russia. In summer in central florida, it rains just about every day, on and off. Most of our storms are thunderstorms, and bad ones at that. We get some pretty hefty wind gusts as well. Launching a shuttle in summer time isn't exactly easy around here.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (2, Interesting)

Jeremi (14640) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648501)

Every person at NASA feels like they're sending their children into space. If the conditions aren't PERFECT, they'll stop the countdown.


Or at least when they try to stop the countdown and management refuses to do so, they'll resign in protest [abcnews.com] ...

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648327)

I find it funny that the Russians pick a date and launch on that date
Perhaps the Russian launch site is near a desert instead of on the Florida coast.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (3, Interesting)

AJWM (19027) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648504)

The Russians have also been known to launch in the middle of a blizzard.

That's one thing that basing your launchers on ICBM technology gets you. After all, if it comes down to it, you can't hold up your ICBM launches for a little inclement weather.

Designing a vehicle with a safe abort mode in all phases of flight would help too (think "commercial aircraft") -- but vertical takeoff/horizontal landing just doesn't do it, and especially not when you've got SRBs that have to burn for two full minutes once lit -- and you can't separate them (or from them) while burning.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648786)

Why do I suddenly have to think of the JATO Darwin Award...

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648348)

[quote]In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you?[/quote] I sooo saw Wile E. Coyote being launched into space in the ejection seat of his ACME spaceship when I read that.

Re:In Soviet USA, Shuttles launch you? (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648704)

The heat shielding tiles are sensitive to ice.

If they are wet, the water dropplets could freeze in space and break them off.

Also bad things can happen with lightning hitting tons of jet fuel. Lightning has hit apollo 10 and 11 before however.

Russian technology is sturdy (2, Informative)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648777)

Do you know what the recommended procedure to de-ice a frozen AK74 is? Wrap it in some blankets and jump on it repeatedly. If a tank is available, alternatively you can run it over the blanketed AK.

Now try that with an M16.

Russian technology is often less sophisticated than US technology. But it can often take a lot more stress, and you can fix it fairly easily. You'd be amazed what junk you can find in some Ural trucks used in lieu of spare parts...

dupe (-1, Flamebait)

tuanjim_2001 (534921) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647959)

WTF! You dupe your own story that's still on the front page! Damn it Zonk why are they paying you! Makes me glad I'm not paying member.

Re:dupe (1)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647967)

July 2nd != July 4th

Re:dupe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648170)

just wait a bit. it will be.

Re:dupe (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15647968)

You're an idiot.

Re:dupe (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648038)

Wow, unless that was a poor attempt at humor, then your post just shows your mind boggling lack of common sense. You obviously don't even read the summaries, and you clearly don't follow the news. FYI, it was originally scheduled to launch Saturday, then it was delayed to today(Sunday). Now it has been delayed to Tuesday, again because of poor weather conditions.

Not A Dupe! (3, Funny)

Ohreally_factor (593551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647960)

It would be funny, though, considering that it would be Zonk duping himself. =)

Anyways, they should delay all that they need to and not take any undue risks. We need another shuttle tragedy like someone named GothChick1989 needs another piercing.

Re:Not A Dupe! (1)

itsthebin (725864) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648518)

could we just have a post after it has been launched.

the date... (-1, Troll)

davids_xls (888798) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647964)

July 4th? for firework display?

So (1, Insightful)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647970)

So later on down in the article (I know, I know, I read it), it says there are 16 missions left, all having something to do with the ISS. What are these 16 missions going to accomplish? What happens if the 16 are not completed by 2010, when the space program ends? Do other country's programs take over? What happens after that, what's the plan for supplying, repairing, etc, to the ISS?

Re:So (4, Interesting)

cooley (261024) | more than 8 years ago | (#15647994)

The "space program" doesn't end in 2010, the "shuttle program" is scheduled to be over in 2010. Folks are working on other vehicles to take over. Also yes, other countries (Russia) can make trips to the ISS also.

Of course, the shuttle can take a much, much larger payload than anything else currently available (I think).

Re:So (1)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648016)

The "space program" doesn't end in 2010, the "shuttle program" is scheduled to be over in 2010. Folks are working on other vehicles to take over. Also yes, other countries (Russia) can make trips to the ISS also.

Yeah, my bad. I meant the shuttle program.

Re:So (1)

cooley (261024) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648092)

No problem buddy, any other day I might have assumed that's what you meant but I just recently had a conversation with someone who thought is was "crap that we spent all that money on the ISS and now we're not gonna fly into space anymore". :)

Re:So (5, Informative)

tftp (111690) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648103)

The Shuttle is as capable as Atlas V Heavy to LEO (50,000 lbs) among currently active vehicles. Proton is close at 46,000 lbs. However STS can only to to LEO, whereas Proton can (and does) go to geosynchronous orbit, delivering up to 12,000 lbs.)

Energiya was a modular design, and could be configured to lift up to 400,000 lbs from the ground. It was flown twice in 160,000 lbs configuration (one of those flights launched Buran, which weighted about 80,000 lbs.) Given Energiya's thrust, Buran could lift up to 60,000 lbs in its payload bay, but that never happened because nobody was interested - we are not building starships yet.

Energiya as such is not manufactured now, but it's engines - RD-180 - are used on Atlas V. The "heavy" option can lift up to 50,000 lbs to the LEO, or 26,000 lbs to the geostationary orbit.

Re:So (1)

TheSHAD0W (258774) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648107)

There was a plan to make a launch vehicle (unmanned) using 4 of the same boosters that help put the shuttle in orbit; it probably wouldn't be difficult to put together, and would have a huge lofting capability.

Re:So (1)

charboy1 (468037) | more than 8 years ago | (#15649333)

Of course, the shuttle can take a much, much larger payload than anything else currently available (I think).

More importantly, the Shuttle can return payloads and experiments to the ground. The Soyuz module has very little space to return payloads. Progress is destroyed during re-entry, as ESA's ATV will be.

In addition the Shuttle connects to ISS using the US docking port allowing the of transfer large rack-sized payloads into ISS. For example this mission will deliver the MELFI rack payload to ISS (a freezer capable of -80C) developed by EADS [eads.net] through ESA for NASA [nasa.gov] . For more information on MELFI see the ESA fact sheet (pdf) [esa.int] .

Re:So (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648126)

Planned Shuttle missions include photographing the bottom of the shuttle, not blowing up anything, getting the crew back alive. Payload will consists of plaster, extra tiles, tools, robotic arms and couple dozen cameras to photograph the shuttle. Major steps in every 16 missions will be a) launching the damn vehicle, b) repairing it on the orbit, c) getting it back in one piece, d) repairing it on ground. And if there's even one shuttle left intact 2010, we'll call it a success.

DuPe (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15647984)

Dupe, dupe, dupe
Dupe of Earl
Dupe, dupe
Dupe of Earl
Dupe, dupe
The Dupe of Earl

Zonk, you're a fucking imbecile.

National Anthem (-1, Flamebait)

Baldrson (78598) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648024)

I think we should all sing the National Anthem when Shuttle lifts off:

...And the rockets' red glare, the bombs bursting in err...

Be serious (5, Insightful)

Hao Wu (652581) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648028)

Nobody ought to make jokes until AFTER the shuttle launch, since we don't yet know the morbid details soon to play out that will make the jokes funny or not.

Re:Be serious (2, Insightful)

oneiron (716313) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648149)

The jokes are funny right now, and that's what matters. Enjoy the moment.

Re:Be serious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648209)

What are you in 3rd grade? the fireworks jokes are moronic right now and they will be no matter what happens with the launch. At least try to think of something a little less obvious. like "due to budget cutbacks, the annual 4th of July NASA company barbeque picnic will be held at the flame deflector."

Re:Be serious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648182)

Nobody ought to make jokes until AFTER the shuttle launch, since we don't yet know the morbid details soon to play out that will make the jokes funny or not.


Agreed. No jokes. But shouldn't we extend the no jones period until after successful landing? Or perhaps all shuttle jokes (excluding anything about Columbia or Challenger) should be held until the Shuttle program ends around 2010? Thank you, Sir, for you excellent point.

Re:Be serious (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648215)

Why the hell would anyone do that? If nothing bad happens, the jokes will be really lame. If something bad does happen, those who joke about it will be called insensitive clods. The fact that we don't know what's going to happen is what makes the jokes funny.

And on that note:

Comedian: "Hey, did you hear the joke about Hao Wu who posted something called 'Be serious' on slashdot?"
Audience: "Uh, yeah... we just read it."
Comedian: "Oh, well in that case did you hear the one about his post being marked +5 Insightful?"
Audience: "What, you think we're blind? We already saw that."
Comedian: "Hm... maybe I ought to joke about something that you don't already know..."
 

Re:Be serious (1)

Hao Wu (652581) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648248)

Audience: "You a funny comedian! Tell us more, but wait until we see what do happen to important space shuttle mission."

Re:Be serious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648405)

Comedian: "Suddenly, audience develop Chinese accent! You a good crowd! May shuttle debris rain down on ancestors!"

Re:Be serious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648800)

ror!

Re:Be serious (4, Insightful)

datafr0g (831498) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648439)

Nobody ought to make jokes until AFTER the shuttle launch, since we don't yet know the morbid details soon to play out that will make the jokes funny or not.


I don't think anyone here is laughing and making fun of at the horrors of a potential disaster - that's not funny.

What is funny is the irony of the situation: On July the 4th, people all over the USA gather and celebrate while watching rockets explode in the sky - AND THEY CHOOSE JULY 4TH TO LAUNCH THE SHUTTLE??
Now that's Irony.

Re:Be serious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648471)

"... and the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air ..."

Get the digi cam out space cadet. (1)

nbritton (823086) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648077)

They need to recorded the show down below, if they can see it from space...

If the lightning don't get ya.... (4, Funny)

tetrahedrassface (675645) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648119)

"....due to growing weather conditions"
This just in.. Weather conditions are growing all over the world. Visual, and radar data combined with realtime satellite imagery have proven without a doubt that weather is growing! Scientists have so far been unable to explain why the weather is growing however recent CERN experiments have concluded that if left unchecked weather will soon sweep the entire planet@!

Save Yourselves!

Re:If the lightning don't get ya.... (1)

Trouvist (958280) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648203)

It got modded "interesting" instead of "funny" eh?

Re:If the lightning don't get ya.... (1)

tetrahedrassface (675645) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648212)

Yeah.. now *thats funny* :)

Damn! (2, Funny)

TemplesA (984100) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648124)

Another two days I can't change my background. Come on, give me a few new good pictures...

Morning vs afternoon (1)

sk999 (846068) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648180)

"That could be good news for NASA because summer thunderstorms are less likely to be a problem earlier in the day."

Maybe in Florida. Here in the Midwest we can get the flash-boom of T'storms any time of day or night. Nothing like being woken up at 5 am to a power outage.

Re:Morning vs afternoon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648283)

Maybe they don't teach this in Midwest schools, but "less likely" is not a synonym for "impossible".

Re:Morning vs afternoon (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648291)

"Nothing like being woken up at 5 am to a power outage."

Huh? Do you have a diesel generator somehow attached to your local power grid so that it knows when the power goes out, starts itself up, then generates power for one of those tornado warning sirens (you know, just to keep the neighbors guessing) and fires up the 8,000,000 candle-power spotlight in strobe(!) mode aimed directly at your window? Or what's the deal?

Re:Morning vs afternoon (1)

spiderbitendeath (577712) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648371)

I usually get woken up in a outage cause my server's fans stop running. The silence is a horrible experience.

Re:Morning vs afternoon (1)

aevan (903814) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648525)

As the phrase goes..."the silence was deafening".

With all the electricity requiring items around, power failures and power resumptions wake me.

How long will it be... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15648181)

..until the Space Shuttle Forever jokes start?

ID4 (1)

powermacx (887715) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648430)

I wonder why are they carrying a MacBook. And Jeff Goldblum.

Amazing (1)

lawncare (986510) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648692)

I'll be watching. Perfect day for patriotism.

Conspiracy? (0, Troll)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648898)

I don't know why this seems to stink to me, but...

    For those that don't know, on my site, we run a lot of news. Even I miss a few of the finer points, but sometimes things come together a little too well, and are way too obvious.

    Recently, an ex-CIA analyst warned that he believes there will be a "terrorist" event in June or July of this year. The event will be blamed on the al-Qaeda. It will actually be an event created by the CIA (or more importantly, bad faction of them).

    So, guys at NASA are screaming "don't launch, we aren't ready", but the administration is pushing it. July 2 was scrubbed due to weather.

    July 4th. If a terrorist was to strike against America, wanting to hurt us emotionally, wouldn't that seem like a prime date? Everyone remembers September 11th, and it won't be forgotten anytime soon. If there was a July 4th attack, who could celebrate it after that??

    July 4th also has a few wonderful things to cover terrorist activity. To a civilian, what's the difference between a firework or a larger rocket powere projectile being fired? I know to me, the morter style fireworks sound like what I'd expect a military morter to sound like, only a bit quieter.

    Why would the government do this? Because the people become outraged that someone could do something against America, and demand action. They'll in turn give the government power to do anything they need (or want) to accomplish it. Look at 9/11, the government was given the power to effectively destroy two other countries, in the name of stopping "terrorism". We're coming up on campaign season, and the Republican administration knows that they're really hurting right now, and don't have much of a chance of keeping their power.

    If something did happen to the shuttle, I guarantee it would be attributed to a terrorist attack.

    I believe the ex-CIA analyst who reported his suspicion did so with the hopes that if there was a government plan to do something, they wouldn't.

    I really hope nothing happens. That's all this country needs is another decade or two of suspicions on how bad the government can really be.

    Ok, return with your flames now.

Re:Conspiracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15649452)

Did your "ex-CIA" analyst happen to mention the acceleration of the space shuttle at launch? By the time it reaches the orbital inclination of the space station it's going 17,180 mph (7.68 km/sec)(Mach 23) - accelerating the whole ride up from 0 at roughly 3Gs, for astronaut comfort.

What weapon system does the U.S. (or any other country) for that matter, have that can accurately hit the shuttle from stand-off range, after about the first two or three seconds after SRB engine ignition? Maybe you should check with your CIA friend.

I didn't think so.

AIM-FIRE! (1)

Vo0k (760020) | more than 8 years ago | (#15648989)

Obviously shining a pocket laser at the shuttle would be considered an act of terrorism, but what about aiming homemade fireworks at it?

Who launches from Florida in the summer? (1)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 8 years ago | (#15649180)

Why not go out to the desert, somewhere like Arizona, to launch these things? Whose brilliant idea was it to launch from Florida in the summer, pretty much right in hurricane season? Furthermore, how come the weather can delay a launch, but the complaints of engineers are ignored? I think a healthy amount of concern is relevant at this point for NASA and the space program. They have just not had enough money for way too long.

Re:Who launches from Florida in the summer? (1)

rs232 (849320) | more than 8 years ago | (#15649264)

"Why not go out to the desert, somewhere like Arizona, to launch these things?"

Because, in the event of an accident they don't want 1,018,181.8 gallons of liquid oxygen and kerosene crashing into some highly populated city instead of the Atlantic.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>