TPAnx
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Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Jul 24, 2006 2:10 pm

Atlantis moves from its hanger to the VAB today, 7/24. Let's hope for another great flight about August 28th..hope to be on the mound for it.
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
Gary2880
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Jul 24, 2006 6:30 pm

yes me again.

pretty obvious question this time, why have we just had STS-121 then its going on to STS-115?????? whats the reasoning behind the numerical designation
Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel :- Samuel Johnson
 
scouseflyer
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Jul 24, 2006 6:35 pm

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 1):
pretty obvious question this time, why have we just had STS-121 then its going on to STS-115?????? whats the reasoning behind the numerical designation

I believe that the numbers represent the order that the missions were originally planned to go up - quite often one mission will slip (eg due to satelite not being ready) and a differant mission will go before it but the numbers remain the same.
 
Gary2880
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Jul 24, 2006 6:47 pm

i see. so we have STS-116, STS-117, STS-118, STS-119, STS-120 all still to come?

i haven't seen many shuttle launches I'm afraid. first one i can actually remember was Columbia blowing up.

odd how you can remember exactly what you were doing when something bad happens isn't it. normally have a memory like a fish but i remember i was playing a computer game while watching sky news for the shuttle landing. weird thing is i can remember the level i was on and even the position i was in... but i digress

and i think its only been discovery from then??? Atlantis will be a nice change!
Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel :- Samuel Johnson
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Jul 24, 2006 7:45 pm

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 3):
i see. so we have STS-116, STS-117, STS-118, STS-119, STS-120 all still to come?

Yes, out of -115 to -124 only -121 was non ISS assembly, so it made sense for a test flight to utilise that mission.
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 1:57 am

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 1):
why have we just had STS-121 then its going on to STS-115?????? whats the reasoning behind the numerical designation

NASA officially assigns STS mission numbers about a year out. Before that, the numbers are only planning numbers and can be changed as necessary. After the STS number is formally assigned, official documentation starts to be built saying, for example, STS-115 will be carrying the Integrated Truss segment P3 and P4. To change the numbers after that point would be expensive, time consuming, and possibly risky (i.e., a part meant for P3/P4 doesn't get on Atlantis because the mission had been redesignated STS-116, but some subcontractor didn't get the memo.)

STS-121 was added to the Shuttle schedule after the Columbia accident when it became clear that all of the Return-to-Flight activities couldn't be achieved on a single Shuttle mission. There were too many spacewalks to test tile repairs, and the Space Station needed more resupply than one mission could handle. STS-121 was added to the Shuttle schedule after STS-115, STS-116, STS-117, STS-118, STS-119, and STS-120 had already gotten their formal mission numbers.

STS-114 was already a resupply mission so it was fairly easy to add many of the Return-to-Flight requirements to that mission. But STS-115 is carrying P3/P4 and was already maxed out on Shuttle payload capability (so much so that it is only carrying six crew instead of seven.) Adding the second half of the Return-to-Flight activities to STS-115 was out of the question, so NASA inserted a new mission between STS-114 and STS-115, and assigned it the first mission number that hadn't already been firmly assigned: 121.

NASA also sometimes changes the order of future missions in order to meet payload requirements. STS-119, for example, has been pushed back until after STS-124 (and probably STS-125, if the Hubble mission is approved) to get the European and Japanese Space Station modules up sooner.
 
Gary2880
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 2:06 am

a happy array of future shuttle missions then.

now.. if something was to go wrong again, obviously we all hope it wont. if another shuttle was too be dispatched, what would happen. im just guessing that if another orbiter was lost the whole idea would be scrapped?? are there any shuttle replacements in the pipeline. going to be built and tested any time soon. or are they just going to cross the bridge when they come to it.
Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel :- Samuel Johnson
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 3:30 am

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 3):

and i think its only been discovery from then??? Atlantis will be a nice change!

Atlantis was supposed to fly STS-121, back when launch was planned for September, 2005. The long delay caused by foam problems and Hurricane Katrina allowed NASA to substitute Discovery and save Atlantis for the heavier STS-115.

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 6):
if another shuttle was too be dispatched, what would happen. im just guessing that if another orbiter was lost the whole idea would be scrapped??

NASA Administrator Griffin said last month that another major accident, fatal or not, would probably lead him to recommend shutting down the Space Shuttle Program. (Although I highly doubt the decision would be his to make, Congress would probably balk at continuing it.)

Technically, there is no particular reason a two-Orbiter fleet couldn't finish out the program.

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 6):
are there any shuttle replacements in the pipeline.

No. After the Columbia accident, Boeing made a very interesting proposal to build a fleet of Mk.II Space Shuttles, using the same aerodynamic design as the Enterprise-class, plus all of the upgrades made to them over the years, but with a radically improved internal and engineering design. NASA declined the offer.

The Shuttle's successor for human spaceflight is the Crew Exploration Vehicle, rumored to about to be named "Project Orion". Orion will be launched on a new rocket based on the Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Booster and called Ares I. Cargo missions to the Space Station are to be delegated to commercial operators.
 
Gary2880
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 4:06 am

Quoting Thorny (Reply 7):
same aerodynamic design as the Enterprise-class

i take it you dont mean....

doo dooo dee dee de dooo doooooo?



when is this orion due to be blasted? or let alone built
Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel :- Samuel Johnson
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 7:16 am

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 8):
i take it you dont mean....

Warp speed, Scotty!

Okay, technically the existing Shuttle Orbiters are the OV-1xx series. Boeing offered to build a better OV-2xx series. I occasionally refer to the OV-1xx series after the first vehicle in the class, Enterprise (OV-101.)

Quoting Gary2880 (Reply 8):
when is this orion due to be blasted?

NASA wants to minimize the gap between Shuttle retirement and first flight of Orion. Shuttle's retirement in 2010 seems pretty firm, but first flight of Orion is all over the map. Probably 2013. Slim chance of 2012. NASA would like 2011, but they haven't even selected the winning contractor yet (that's scheduled for September, but there are rumors of yet another delay.)

The current likely schedule is for abort test launches using boilerplate spacecraft (structurally accurate and correctly balanced mockups) atop surplus MX missiles in late 2008. First flight of the Ares I in 2009 (with a dummy upper stage and another boilerplate) and all-up in 2010, probably as a high-altitude abort test. There will be at least one unmanned orbital flight, probably in 2012, followed by first manned flight (going to ISS) in 2013. Additional funding, which some in Congress are championing, could accelerate that timetable a little, but not a lot.
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 7:29 am

Quoting Thorny (Reply 9):
Boeing offered to build a better OV-2xx series.

Out of interest, considering Boeing only gained its Shuttle experience through the purchase of the Rocketdyne section of Rockwell in 1996, how much of that experience was retained considering there had been no major structural development on a Shuttle airframe since Endeavour was constructed? Was this a factor in turning down an OV-2xx?
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 8:06 am

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 10):
Boeing only gained its Shuttle experience through the purchase of the Rocketdyne section of Rockwell in 1996,

Well, Rocketdyne was the engine division of Rockwell. The Shuttles (and B-1s) came from the North American division. Boeing still occasionally mentions the North American name, but it seems to be moribund.

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 10):
Was this a factor in turning down an OV-2xx?

No, after Columbia, NASA (read Sean O'Keefe) seems to have run as fast and as far as it could from anything with wings. Even the Orbital Space Plane (which could probably have been now close to making its first flight, alas) was killed in favor of the semi-ballistic capsule approach of CEV, and OSP was just a lifting body, not a winged ship. No matter, simple and reliable was the order of the day. Boeing's Orbiter Mk.II never had a chance, but an OV-2xx series using Liquid Flyback Boosters, well... its interesting to think what a system like that would have been capable of.
 
DfwRevolution
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 8:14 am

Quoting Thorny (Reply 7):
After the Columbia accident, Boeing made a very interesting proposal to build a fleet of Mk.II Space Shuttles, using the same aerodynamic design as the Enterprise-class, plus all of the upgrades made to them over the years, but with a radically improved internal and engineering design

Is there anywhere I could find more information on such a vehicle or did it never reach the public domain?
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Jul 25, 2006 10:15 am

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 12):
Is there anywhere I could find more information on such a vehicle or did it never reach the public domain?

It was reported in the trade paper Space News circa Jul 2003. The article might be available in the archives of its online partner Space.com.
 
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mke717spotter
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Wed Jul 26, 2006 2:12 pm

Quoting TPAnx (Thread starter):
Let's hope for another great flight about August 28th..hope to be on the mound for it.

Garh! I think that might be when I have to go with my school to some outdoor camp before classes start for a couple of days!  melting 

Quoting Thorny (Reply 7):
No. After the Columbia accident, Boeing made a very interesting proposal to build a fleet of Mk.II Space Shuttles,

Speaking of new shuttles...anyone ever see the movie Armeggedon? It's with Bruce Willis and stuff where they have to fly to this asteroid and destroy it before it hits earth...well anyways you guys remember those 2 special kind of space shuttles they used? If Nasa wanted to could they building something just like that and send it to the moon and back instead of this new Crew Exploration Viechle, or after this will we never see a new Space Shuttle type of thing for Nasa?
Will you watch the Cleveland Browns and the Detroit Lions on Sunday? Only if coach Eric Mangini resigned after a loss.
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:48 pm

Quoting Mke717spotter (Reply 14):
anyone ever see the movie Armeggedon? It's with Bruce Willis and stuff where they have to fly to this asteroid and destroy it before it hits earth...well anyways you guys remember those 2 special kind of space shuttles they used? If Nasa wanted to could they building something just like that and send it to the moon and back instead of this new Crew Exploration Viechle,

It's all about weight, or rather mass. The Shuttle Orbiters weigh 180,000 lbs. or so empty. The entire Apollo 17 stack (Command Module and Lunar Module) was only 110,000 lbs. or so. Every pound you send to escape velocity generally requires about 2 pounds of fuel for the burn (the S-IVB stage on Apollo was around 200,000 lbs.) Yes, you could probably come up with a way to fly the Shuttles to the Moon if you really wanted to, but it would be horribly inefficient, and the standard Shuttles would have to get even heavier, due to stronger heat shield materials and deep space comm, etc. Even CEV seems to be a little on the heavy side for what it is meant to do.

And of course, "Armageddon's" Freedom and Independence were strictly Hollywood creations, with the infinite fuel capacity that is standard for Hollywood spacecraft (but hey, they filled up with more LOX at the Russian Space Station!). A much more realistic depiction of a deep space manned spacecraft for that purpose is the Messiah in "Deep Impact", and even that is pretty Hollywood-ized. At least it didn't defy the laws of physics very seriously.
 
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eksath
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Jul 27, 2006 9:03 am

The 15 remaining scheduled ISS shuttle missions, including target
launch date, orbiter to be used and planned cargo. The Hubble mission
has not been scheduled:
Aug. 28: Atlantis. STS-115. Truss segment, solar arrays.
Dec. 14: Discovery. STS-116. Truss segment, cargo module.
Feb. 22, 2007: Atlantis. STS-117. Truss segment, solar arrays.
June 11, 2007: Endeavour. STS-118. Truss segment, cargo module.
Aug. 9, 2007: Atlantis. STS-120. Node 2 attachment point for two more
science labs.
Sept. 27, 2007: Discovery. STS-122. European Columbus science laboratory.
Nov. 29, 2007: Endeavour. STS-123. First of three parts of Japanese
science lab and Canadian robotic hand.
Feb. 7, 2008: Atlantis. STS-124. Japanese Kibo Experiment Module and robot arm.
June 19, 2008: Endeavour. STS-119. Truss segment, solar arrays.
Aug. 21, 2008: Atlantis. STS-126. Cargo module.
Oct. 30, 2008: Discovery. STS-127. Exposed modules for Japanese lab.
Jan. 22, 2009: Endeavour. STS-129. Cargo module and crew quarters for
three more permanent ISS crew.
April 30, 2009: Discovery. STS-129. Station equipment and spare parts.
Oct. 22, 2009: Discovery. STS-131. Cargo holding racks.
Jan. 21, 2010: Endeavour. STS-132. Node 3 and cupola.
World Wide Aerospace Photography
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Jul 27, 2006 9:35 am

What will happen once the station is completed with the last shuttle mission? Will the US then rely on the russians to get their people on the ISS?

I understand that the shuttle will be retired in 2010, but this means that a completed space station cannot be supported by the USA for three years?

Will there be missions planned for the shuttle successor to the ISS?
 
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mke717spotter
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:08 am

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 17):
What will happen once the station is completed with the last shuttle mission? Will the US then rely on the russians to get their people on the ISS?

I think that before that Crew Exploration Viechle starts headin for the moon it will be making flights to the ISS with supplies and to change astronauts aboard the ISS. I'm guessing they will still keep flying to resuply the ISS.

- So does anyone think we'll ever see some kind of new space shuttle type thing from Nasa or is it justgonna be regular rocket from now on?
Will you watch the Cleveland Browns and the Detroit Lions on Sunday? Only if coach Eric Mangini resigned after a loss.
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Jul 27, 2006 10:26 am

Quoting Eksath (Reply 16):
The Hubble mission
has not been scheduled:

It has a placeholder on STS-125 in April, 2008 on Discovery.

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 17):
What will happen once the station is completed with the last shuttle mission? Will the US then rely on the russians to get their people on the ISS?

Yes, the U.S. Congress amended the Iran Nuclear Nonproliferation Act last year to allow NASA to purchase flights on Soyuz through 2012.

Quoting Mke717spotter (Reply 18):

I think that before that Crew Exploration Viechle starts headin for the moon it will be making flights to the ISS with supplies and to change astronauts aboard the ISS.

That's the plan. Don't hold your breath, though.
 
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mke717spotter
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Jul 27, 2006 2:01 pm

Quoting Thorny (Reply 19):
Don't hold your breath, though.

Hey, I'd rather have a shuttle be flyin up there instead of some little spacecraft anyways.  Yeah sure
Will you watch the Cleveland Browns and the Detroit Lions on Sunday? Only if coach Eric Mangini resigned after a loss.
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Fri Jul 28, 2006 9:55 pm

NASA has officially advanced the launch of STS-115 one day, to August 27.
The move was made possible after studying lighting conditions at External Tank seperation, a requirement for this mission due to post-Columbia safety rules.

Launch is now scheduled for 4:30pm, Sunday, August 27.
 
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mke717spotter
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Jul 30, 2006 12:25 am

Looks like the shuttle is gonna roll out to the launch pad Monday.

[Edited 2006-07-29 17:29:44]
Will you watch the Cleveland Browns and the Detroit Lions on Sunday? Only if coach Eric Mangini resigned after a loss.
 
TPAnx
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Jul 31, 2006 11:37 pm

Rollout was scheduled for midnight Sunday/ Monday. The weather gods did not smile.  raincloud  Heavy rain and lightning have delayed rollout to later Monday at the earliest.
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
TPAnx
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Wed Aug 02, 2006 11:53 am

Another weather delay..they'll try again before sunrise on Wednesday  crossfingers 
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
TPAnx
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Wed Aug 02, 2006 10:36 pm

"Atlantis" is at the pad...details here:
http://www.bradenton.com/mld/bradenton/news/15179602.htm
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
phatalbert
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sat Aug 05, 2006 1:14 am

Hey Thorny You work for NASA, do research ALOT, or what .. lol you seem to be pretty intelligent about these shuttles and program.. just wondering?
**Isaac**
 
TPAnx
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Aug 07, 2006 1:31 am

Have wondered the same. Crew due at KSC Monday for countdown rehearsal,
emergency procedures check, suit tests etc. TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
TPAnx
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Aug 15, 2006 10:23 am

Guess he (Thorny) won't tell us. NASA has discovered that the bolts holding a key antenna in the cargo bay may not be the right bolts. Whether they will have to be replaced isn't known...Atlantis has apparently flown a few missions with them in place. Guess Flight Readiness will tell all....
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Tue Aug 15, 2006 10:55 am

Quoting PhatAlbert (Reply 26):
Hey Thorny You work for NASA, do research ALOT, or what .. lol you seem to be pretty intelligent about these shuttles and program.. just wondering?

Nope, not a NASA or contractor employee. I just grew up around all this stuff and read wayyyyy too much.  Smile

Quoting TPAnx (Reply 28):
Guess he (Thorny) won't tell us.

Actually, I was on vacation the last two weeks...
 
TPAnx
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:23 am

NASA clears "Atlantis" for flight on the 27th,4:30 PM EDT.
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Aug 17, 2006 7:29 pm

Quoting TPAnx (Reply 30):

Time to start betting how many delays we will see this time... I think 3 times due to weather, 2 times due to security reasons.
 
TedTAce
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:49 pm

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 31):
Time to start betting how many delays we will see this time... I think 3 times due to weather, 2 times due to security reasons.

I really hope you are wrong, because a Sunday launch would be a great way to end the weekend. elsewise, I'm going to have to leave work early on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday...... hey maybe 4 delays would be good, push it back to Saturday... hummm
This space intentionally left blank
 
TPAnx
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sat Aug 19, 2006 10:02 am

Some weekend work for the techs..they're going to replace the two "short"
bolts on the KU antenna in the cargo bay. Won't interfere with the start of the countdown Thursday..unless something goes wrong....
TPAnx

[Edited 2006-08-19 03:03:04]
I read the news today..oh boy
 
RichPhitzwell
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sat Aug 19, 2006 3:05 pm

Is it possible to launch two Orbiters at the same time or back to back by an hour or so?
Nonav.com kinda like Whiners except the lights are on and the pimps been paid
 
TedTAce
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sat Aug 19, 2006 8:24 pm

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 34):

My initial reaction was a casual not safely, which means it will never happen.

Then I thought about it and it's beyond my ability to concieve that the launch control facility can PHYSICALLY have two live countdowns running at the same time. IE while there are obviously two sets of interface cables (1 set running from 39a and another from 39b) running to the launch control center, you can only monitor say 'ET functions' from the sole 'ET controller's' position 1 at a time. I'll bet Thorny will have the best insight on how long it takes to switch the physical connection from one pad to the other at the LCC. PS I made up the ET controller position, but I think it illustrates my point that you would have to have another physical LCC to pull this off, and that I can GARANTEE will never happen during the STS era.
This space intentionally left blank
 
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mke717spotter
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sat Aug 19, 2006 11:32 pm

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 31):
Time to start betting how many delays we will see this time...

I'm hoping for no delays since on the 28th I have to leave with my whole highschool to some outdoors camp in northern Wisconsin for 4 days.
Will you watch the Cleveland Browns and the Detroit Lions on Sunday? Only if coach Eric Mangini resigned after a loss.
 
TedTAce
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sat Aug 19, 2006 11:40 pm

(Below is paraphrase, not his original words)
I have gotten word from SATL382G that the LCC was designed for 3 launches. Apparently there there was supposed to be a 39C, but that never happened. He goes on to say that while the command center we usually see on TV is configured for 1 launch at a time, but there are other rooms. He says that the main REAL obstacle to a dual launch is staffing.
This space intentionally left blank
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:26 am

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 34):
Is it possible to launch two Orbiters at the same time or back to back by an hour or so?

Theoretically, yes. But they'd be pushing the system harder than ever before and its a very bad idea. For practical purposes, the closest you'd probably ever get would be launches a week apart, so you don't have two countdowns running simultaneously. As SATL tells us through Ted, manpower is the major bottleneck. Could it be done? Probably (I would have said certainly, 10 years ago, today... budget cuts and deferred maintenance have really hurt KSC) but it would be a very high risk operation.

Quoting TedTAce (Reply 37):
I have gotten word from SATL382G that the LCC was designed for 3 launches. Apparently there there was supposed to be a 39C, but that never happened. He goes on to say that while the command center we usually see on TV is configured for 1 launch at a time, but there are other rooms. He says that the main REAL obstacle to a dual launch is staffing.

Complex 39 was designed to handle four launch campaigns simultaneously, as it was designed early in Apollo before the actual number of launches needed for each mission was settled. That's why the Vehicle Assembly Building has four High Bays and the Launch Control Center has four Firing Rooms. There would have been four pads... 39A to D, from north to south along the coast. This was thought necessary to support Earth Orbit Rendezvous, with two Saturn V launches per Apollo mission. With rockets still exploding with some regularity at the time, NASA thought two backup pads desirable, so Complex 39 was laid out for 4 pads.

Early on, the fourth pad was cancelled to save money, so they only built three Mobile Launchers and didn't finish the fourth VAB High Bay or LCC Firing Room. They renamed the Pads from south to north, so 39D became today's 39A. Then, when Lunar Orbit Rendezvous was selected as the launch method for Apollo, and only one Saturn V would be needed per mission, Pad 39C was cancelled as well. This happened so late in the process that you can still see the bend in the Crawlerway near 39B where the Crawlerway would have proceeded to 39C. There were also highway signs at KSC indicating 39C for many years. The land where 39C and 39D would have been is now Canaveral National Seashore.

For Shuttle, only two of the VAB High Bays were converted from Saturn V to Shuttle. The third was refurbished in the 90s to serve as a safe haven from hurricanes, but cannot be used for assembly. All three Mobile Launchers were converted for use by Shuttle by 1989. Two Firing Rooms were converted for Shuttle, and a third was upgraded with state of the art equipment, which debuted with last month's Discovery launch. I'm not sure if the new Firing Room is an upgrade to one of the earlier Shuttle Firing Rooms or is an overhaul of one that was not in use (or rather, was used for other purposes.)
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 12:47 am

Question, is there access to the shuttles cargo bay while its standing at the pad?
 
TedTAce
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 4:00 am

Quoting RichardPrice (Reply 39):
Question, is there access to the shuttles cargo bay while its standing at the pad?

Absolutely. That's why there was even talk of replacing the k- band antenna's bolts. Usually that structure is moved back a few days before launch.

PS: SATL dug a little deeper and found the information above about the 4th pad. Apparently a book he's had for 30 years and never caught that part of it.

[Edited 2006-08-19 21:05:57]
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RichPhitzwell
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 4:18 am

Im confused (as usual), is the final verdict that it is possible to launch multiple orbiters at the same time, just a very bad idea?

On this same topic, I heard that originally Vandenburg was to be the launch site for the orbiter (This may go back to Apollo) but political will brought it back to the cape. Is there any truth to this?
Nonav.com kinda like Whiners except the lights are on and the pimps been paid
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 4:31 am

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 41):
On this same topic, I heard that originally Vandenburg was to be the launch site for the orbiter (This may go back to Apollo) but political will brought it back to the cape. Is there any truth to this?

Vandenburg was the location for polar launches, but only Enterprise was ever setup on a stack there and that was only for testing (obviously as Enterprise was not flight capable).
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 4:32 am

Quoting TedTAce (Reply 40):

Absolutely. That's why there was even talk of replacing the k- band antenna's bolts. Usually that structure is moved back a few days before launch.

Thanks, that answers my question.
 
Thorny
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 7:10 am

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 41):
Im confused (as usual), is the final verdict that it is possible to launch multiple orbiters at the same time, just a very bad idea?

I don't know of anything that would specifically prevent launches on the same day. There might be details such as the amount of Liquid Hydrogen that can be stored at the Cape, things like that, that could prevent it. Manpower is the main argument against it. While launching the Shuttle is a vastly more automated process than Saturn V before it, it still requires a huge number of people to launch it, and KSC generally only has enough to launch one at a time. Since launch countdowns take about four days, my guess is the minimum practical interval between launches would be five days, but that would be with an exhausted workforce having no time off between launch campaigns... in other words, I wouldn't want to fly on the second one.

Quoting RichPhitzwell (Reply 41):
On this same topic, I heard that originally Vandenburg was to be the launch site for the orbiter (This may go back to Apollo) but political will brought it back to the cape. Is there any truth to this?

Kennedy Space Center was always the primary launch site for the Space Shuttle. Vandenberg was to be a secondary launch site for polar orbit missions (mostly spy satellites and other Earth observation missions). You can't launch rockets or the Shuttle into polar orbit from Kennedy Space Center without overflying populated areas or dropping spent stages on populated areas. Similarly, you can't launch rockets into equatorial orbits from Vandenberg without overflying populated areas or dropping spent stages on populated areas.

The vast majority of the Shuttle's missions were expected to be equatorial orbit missions (mostly communications satellites), so Kennedy was by far the principal launch site for it. The Air Force joined the Shuttle program in 1973 and agreed to upgrade its old Titan III Manned Orbiting Laboratory launch pad at Vandenberg for it. That pad was abandoned nearly complete in 1989. It now launches Boeing's Delta IV.
 
RichardPrice
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Sun Aug 20, 2006 7:49 am

Quoting Thorny (Reply 44):
Similarly, you can't launch rockets into equatorial orbits from Vandenberg without overflying populated areas or dropping spent stages on populated areas.

Well technically you can, but only in an 'opposite' orbit. This raises the question of whether the Shuttle stack contains enough fuel to attempt such an insane move.
 
TedTAce
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Mon Aug 21, 2006 8:54 pm

They got the antenna Bolts changed, looks like so far so good  Wink

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14439975/from/RS.3/
This space intentionally left blank
 
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eksath
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Wed Aug 23, 2006 8:20 am

Here is the SOP for any who is planning to visit for the launch. Good luck.

NASA RELEASE: 53-06

AIRSPACE, BRIDGES AND WATERWAY RESTRICTIONS IN EFFECT FOR STS-115

For the STS-115 launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis, NASA managers are
urging all aircraft pilots and boaters to fully comply with the
airspace, bridges and waterway restrictions imposed around Kennedy
Space Center prior to and during shuttle launches and landings.

"As always, we are coordinating with officials from the U.S. Air Force
Eastern Range, Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. Coast
Guard to help provide a safe launch environment for the shuttle crew
and for interested spectators," said KSC Launch Director Mike
Leinbach. "Violating these restrictions is not only unsafe for the
astronauts and support crews, it's unsafe for the violator."

The first launch opportunity is Sunday, Aug. 27, with liftoff targeted
for 4:30 p.m. EDT. This launch time is approximately in the middle of
a 10-minute launch window. At NASA's request, Air Force and Coast
Guard surveillance aircraft will patrol KSC's airspace boundaries on
launch day. Violators will be intercepted by patrol forces,
thoroughly investigated and subject to FAA enforcement action. A
number of restrictions remain in effect around KSC during the hours
immediately following the launch of a space shuttle.

The following are restrictions that apply to pilots, boaters and motor
vehicle operators using the airspace, waterways, or roads and bridges
that lead to KSC.

KSC AREA AVIATION RESTRICTIONS

For the launch of Atlantis on mission STS-115, all restricted areas
surrounding KSC will be active and the area covered by flight
restrictions has once again been expanded for this launch. The length
of time the restrictions will be in effect prior to launch has also
been extended.

Due to international terrorist activities, heightened security is
essential to protect the space shuttle as a national asset. An
inadvertent unauthorized incursion into the area of the Cape
Canaveral Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR) could cause a scrub in
the launch of Atlantis, the activation of airspace defenses and an
FAA enforcement action. Local pilots are asked to help NASA by
respecting these temporary but necessary restrictions so the launch
can occur on time and without incident.

The Eastern Range restricted airspace for KSC and Cape Canaveral Air
Force Station is in effect on a continuous basis and is off limits to
general aviation pilots. Access is limited to official aircraft only.
The restricted airspace normally covers the area bounded by the
Indian River to the west, Port Canaveral to the south, the city of
Oak Hill to the north, and three miles over the Atlantic Ocean to the
east.

On launch day, these restricted areas will be expanded by the TFR and
will be activated at approximately launch minus 7 hours. It will
continue in effect until approximately 20 minutes after launch, after
which the standard restricted areas for KSC and Cape Canaveral Air
Force Station will be in effect. On Aug. 27, the TFR will be
activated at 9:24 a.m. EDT. The launch is targeted to occur at 4:30
p.m. EDT. Should the launch be scrubbed during the terminal
countdown, the TFR will remain in effect until 5:54 p.m. For the next
launch attempt, pilots should check NOTAMS for the hours the TFR will
be in effect.

General aviation and VFR operations are prohibited within a
30-nautical-mile radius of Launch Pad 39-B from the surface to (but
not including) 18,000 feet (located on the Melbourne VOR/DME
004-degree radial at 30.6 nautical miles). Among the public-use
general aviation airports affected within this area are Space Coast
Regional Airport in Titusville, Arthur Dunn Airpark in Titusville,
Merritt Island Airport on Merritt Island and Massey Ranch in
Edgewater.

Within an airspace radius between 30 and 40 nautical miles of Pad
39-B, a discrete transponder code must be obtained and clearance
granted from air traffic control before entering this airspace.
Continuous radio communications must be maintained.

Before flight, pilots should contact the St. Petersburg FAA Flight
Service Station at 1-800/WxBrief (1-800/992-7433) for details of the
restrictions contained in the NOTAMS. In flight, outside Orlando
Class B airspace, pilots should contact Orlando Approach control on
134.95. In the Melbourne area, contact Orlando Approach control on
132.65. In the New Smyrna Beach area, contact Orlando Approach
control on 125.35. Flight Service can also be reached locally by
radio on the Titusville RCO at 123.6 or the Melbourne RCO on 122.6.
Advisories will also be available from the control tower at Space
Coast Regional Airport in Titusville at 118.9 megahertz.

Among the public-use airports affected within the 30- to
40-nautical-mile radius in which flight is permitted but under
positive air traffic control are Orlando International Airport,
Orlando Executive Airport, Orlando-Sanford International Airport, the
New Smyrna Beach Municipal Airport, Melbourne International Airport
and Valkaria airport. Pilots are encouraged to consult the most
recent FAA aeronautical chart for Orlando Class B airspace dated Feb.
16.

BRIDGES AND ACCESS HIGHWAYS CONTROLLED FOR LAUNCH

The opening and closing of bridges over waterways surrounding KSC will
be strictly controlled during the hours immediately before and after
the launch period for each space shuttle mission.

Bridges affected by the launch include:

* Port Canaveral Barge Canal (State Road 401);

* Indian River/NASA Causeway West (Intracoastal Waterway);

* Merritt Island Barge Canal (Merritt Island State Road 3);

* Haulover Canal Bridge (State Road 3, north of KSC).

Restraints on bridge openings for boat traffic begin three hours
before launch. The bridges may be opened for five minutes at the
following points in the launch countdown: T-180 minutes, T-150
minutes, T-120 minutes, T-90 minutes and T-65 minutes. Adding 20
minutes to these times and subtracting that amount from the opening
of the launch window (4:24 p.m.) will result in an approximate time
of openings.

Bridges will remain closed to boat traffic until 90 minutes after
liftoff (T+90). They may then open for five minutes at T+90, T+120
minutes and T+150 minutes. Bridge operations will return to normal
three hours after launch (T+180 minutes).

Should the shuttle be required to perform a return-to-launch-site
landing at KSC, all bridges would remain closed to boat traffic from
45 minutes before landing until at least one hour after landing.

State Road 3 from the Gate 2 Pass and Identification Building to State
Road 405 (NASA Causeway) via Space Commerce Way will be closed on
launch day, Aug. 27, beginning at 8:30 a.m. NASA Causeway between the
KSC Visitor Complex and the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame will also be
closed starting at that time. Only badged employees and guests with
passes will be permitted access. These roads will reopen
approximately two hours after launch.

On the Merritt Island Wildlife Refuge, State Road 406 and County Road
402 leading to Titusville, as well as State Road 3 south of the
Haulover Canal bridge, will close at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 23,
and reopen approximately two hours after launch.

KSC AREA BOATING RESTRICTIONS

Waterways and boating near KSC will be strictly controlled prior to
and during the launch of Atlantis on STS-115.

Safety and security requirements, including Air Force range safety
impact limit lines, will go into effect as early as three days before
launch. Other requirements will be phased into effect through sunset
the night before launch. A general description of the area follows:

ATLANTIC OCEAN: Beginning on L-3 days (Thursday, Aug. 24, at 8 a.m.)
and continuing through launch, a general exclusion zone will be in
effect three miles offshore from the Haulover Canal, near the north
end of KSC, and southward to Port Canaveral. Four hours prior to
launch, all ocean-going traffic will be restricted from entering an
area measured from nine miles north and south of the launch pad and
extending 64 miles east into the ocean. An additional three-mile-wide
exclusion zone will be extended eastward along the flight path of the
space shuttle.

INDIAN RIVER: Restrictions apply from the NASA Causeway north to the
Haulover Canal and east of the Indian River's main channel.
Restrictions begin on L-3 days (Aug. 24).

MOSQUITO LAGOON: This area south of the Haulover Canal in the Mosquito
Lagoon is off limits to all boats beginning the day before launch
(L-1 day).

BANANA RIVER: Security limits begin at the Banana River Barge Canal
south of KSC at the State Road 528 crossing and extend north. This
restriction is effective 16 hours prior to launch.

All boating restrictions will be lifted approximately one hour after
launch.

Boating interests should monitor Coast Guard Channel 16 broadcasting
from Port Canaveral. The Coast Guard, the Fish and Wildlife Service,
and KSC security forces share responsibility for enforcing the
boating guidelines.
World Wide Aerospace Photography
 
chksix
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Wed Aug 23, 2006 3:53 pm

National asset is truly an understatement! I hope the flight can make this window and avoid a scrub.
The conveyor belt plane will fly
 
TPAnx
Topic Author
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RE: Offical STS-115 Atlantis Thread

Fri Aug 25, 2006 10:21 am

Countdown started this evening. Weather types say there's a 70 per cent chance of conditions which will allow tanking..and launch. Says weather in the late afternoon tends to be good. Hasn't been the case today..and won't be tomorrow...southwesterly flow and a lot of moisture and the storms just keep rolling off the Gulf...we'll see...  crossfingers 
TPAnx
I read the news today..oh boy

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