Thorny
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Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 3:21 am

Flight: STS-125 (124th flight of the Space Shuttle)

Mission: Hubble Space Telescope Servicing Mission 4

Orbiter: OV-104 Atlantis (30th flight of Atlantis)

Crew:
Scott Altman, Commander (STS-90, STS-106, STS-109)
Gregory Johnson, Pilot (first flight)
Andrew Feustel, Mission Specialist (first flight)
Michael Good, Mission Specialist (first flight)
John Grunsfeld, Mission Specialist (STS-67, STS-81, STS-103, STS-109)
Michael Massamino, Mission Specialist (STS-109)
Megan McArthur, Mission Specialist (first flight)

Launch:
Saturday, October 5, 2008, 3:02am EDT (GMT -4 hrs)
Launch Pad 39A, Kennedy Space Center, Florida

Landing:
Thursday, October 16, 2008. 12:04am EDT
Shuttle Landing Facility, Kennedy Space Center, Florida

STS-125 marks the fifth Space Shuttle mission to the Hubble Space Telescope, a mission re-instated following public and political pressure in the wake of former NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe’s 2004 decision to cancel the flight due to concerns that Columbia-like damage would be irreparable and that the Space Shuttle could not sustain a crew in orbit long enough for a rescue mission to be mounted.

Hubble was launched on April 24, 1990 with one instrument in each of its four large, axial bays: the Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph, Faint Object Spectrograph, Faint Object Camera, and the Goddard High Speed Photometer. Three Fine Guidance Sensors and the Wide Field/Planetary Camera occupied the four smaller radial bays.

The previous Hubble Space Telescope servicing missions were:

SM-1 (STS-61 Endeavour, December 2, 1993)
Installed Corrective Optics Space Telescope Axial Replacement (COSTAR), Wide Field/Planetary Camera 2, and new solar arrays, gyroscopes, a computer co-processor, and various electronics upgrades. COSTAR replaced the Goddard High Speed Photometer and gave Hubble clear vision for the first time since its spherical aberration problem was identified in 1990.

SM-2 (STS-82 Discovery, February 11, 1997)
Installed NICMOS, STIS, a refurbished Fine Guidance Sensor, and a solid state data recorder. NICMOS (Near Infrared Camera/Multi-Object Spectrograph) replaced the Goddard High Resolution Spectrograph and STIS (Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph) replaced the Faint Object Spectrograph.

SM-3A (STS-103 Discovery, December 19, 1999)
When problems with Hubble’s gyroscopes crippled the spacecraft in late 1999, NASA split the planned SM-3 into two parts. The first mission (3A) would replace Hubble’s problem-plagued gyroscopes and perform other critical repairs, while the second mission (3B) would complete the instrument upgrades originally planned for the mission. SM-3A replaced all six gyroscopes and a Fine Guidance Sensor, and installed a more powerful computer.

SM-3B (STS-109 Columbia, March 1, 2002)
Installed the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS), new rigid solar panels, and added a regenerative cooling system for NICMOS’s infrared camera, along with other electronics and power system upgrades. ACS replaced the Faint Object Camera.

SM-4, planned for launch in early October, will be a mix of repairs and new instrument installation. The Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3) will replace WF/PC-2, which has been Hubble’s workhorse instrument since 1993. The Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) will replace COSTAR, which is no longer needed because all of Hubble’s current instruments, including COS, have built-in corrective optics.

Two of Hubble’s existing instruments are crippled or not currently functioning: the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) failed in 2004 and the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS) failed in 2007. Spacewalking astronauts will attempt to repair both instruments. The astronauts will also install a new Fine Guidance Sensor, replacing one which is in a degraded condition, and again replace all six gyroscopes. Finally, the astronauts will install new batteries, add improved thermal insulation, and install a docking target to Hubble for future spacecraft.

Five spacewalks (EVAs) on consecutive days are currently planned. Grunsfeld and Feustel will perform EVAs 1, 3, and 5. Massamino and Good will perform EVAs 2 and 4.

EVA-1: Install gyros and battery
EVA-2: Install COS and second battery
EVA-3: Install WFC-3 and insulation
EVA-4: Repair STIS
EVA-5: Install Fine Guidance Sensor and repair ACS

A sixth EVA, to complete repairs of ACS if they are not finished on EVA-5, is currently being debated within NASA.

STS-125 is the only remaining Space Shuttle mission not planned to dock at the International Space Station, and Hubble’s orbit is incompatible with that of the Space Station, so the “Safe Haven” option is not available in the event Atlantis is damaged in flight and cannot make a safe landing. Without the luxury of the Station’s power and life support reserves, the Atlantis can only support a crew for about 23 days. This is not long enough to roll out a rescue Shuttle and launch it. Therefore, NASA will simultaneously prepare both Atlantis and Endeavour for launch, Atlantis at Pad 39A and Endeavour at Pad 39B. Endeavour is to be ready to launch on a rescue mission within 10 days of call-up.

[Edited 2008-07-25 20:27:33]
 
gigneil
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 4:12 am

I'm not sure if people agree with me, but this is a waste of a flight that could be carrying the Centrifuge Accommodations Module and the AMS-02.

Its going to take years before an Orion capsule can reach the machine again, and despite the requirement that Orion be able to service Hubble and satellites near the Earth/Moon and Earth/Sun Lagrange points I am not confident that it will be very feasible to do so. The Hubble was designed with servicing in mind, and it's needed it 4 times in less than 20 years.

My $.2 (inflation, you know). It served its purpose, which was to give NASA new life after Challenger. Now let it die.They should let it fail now, and launch 3 less complicated ones in its place, up to altitudes that are beyond the Shuttle's ceiling where they are more useful at any rate.

NS
 
chksix
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 7:33 am

Hubble is still in it's prime and needed so I agree that the mission is necessary. The surprising thing about the crew selection to me is the big number of rookies on such a complicated mission.
The conveyor belt plane will fly
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 9:02 am

Lets hope they launch without problems with the heat shield. Is ist actually possible to see the different route the Shuttle will take at launch, or will it look like every other of the last launches?
 
nomadd22
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 11:33 am

Is the ACS going to be that important anymore? Looking at the specs, it seems like WFC-3 can do almost everything ACS can do plus a lot more over a lot wider spectrum.

They claim to have the breaking wire problem in the gyros fixed, and with new batteries, there's a good chance the old girl could last considerably longer than 5 more years. 10 years of science with WPC-3 and COS would be so far beyond what the original Hubble could do, the original designers must think they're dreaming.

Hubble will go down as the most successful, productive mission in Nasa's history by a huge factor. I'm in favor of calling Griffin in to explain to him that it's his job to find AMS a ride and he needs to remember who he works for, but saying that it's more important than getting these new instruments to Hubble and keeping it going is absurd.
Hubble was ready to launch before Challenger, and Orion has never had a requirement to service Hubble or any other satellite. You might not want to get your science history from Weekly world news.
Anon
 
zanl188
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 12:20 pm



Quoting Chksix (Reply 2):
The surprising thing about the crew selection to me is the big number of rookies on such a complicated mission.

Each EVA team has a Hubble veteran. Heck Grunsfeld has been to Hubble enough times he could probably feel his way around the thing blind....

Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 3):
Is ist actually possible to see the different route the Shuttle will take at launch, or will it look like every other of the last launches?

The Hubble mission will head due east out of KSC whereas ISS missions will head northeast up the U.S. east coast.

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 1):
I'm not sure if people agree with me, but this is a waste of a flight that could be carrying the Centrifuge Accommodations Module and the AMS-02.

Hubble & the Space Telescope Science Institute have a lot of friends in Congress...
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Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 2:20 pm



Quoting Gigneil (Reply 1):
I'm not sure if people agree with me, but this is a waste of a flight that could be carrying the Centrifuge Accommodations Module and the AMS-02.

The CAM was canceled in 2005 and SM-4 was reinstated in 2006. CAM has been sitting outside a building at a Japanese space center for two years now and It isn't flightworthy, and the centrifuge itself was never completed. Also, one flight couldn't carry both the CAM and AMS.

Quoting Nomadd22 (Reply 4):
I'm in favor of calling Griffin in to explain to him that it's his job to find AMS a ride and he needs to remember who he works for,

He does, that's why he reinstated Hubble SM-4. O'Keefe cancelled it to focus on Space Station, and public opinion was something like 80% against that decision. Something had to give, and it was AMS, which wasn't essential to ISS or which NASA wasn't obligated to launch to ISS for the international partners. Congress belatedly realized that was a mistake and is trying to add an AMS flight, but it might be too late now.

Quoting Nomadd22 (Reply 4):
Is the ACS going to be that important anymore?

Yes, it still can detect fainter objects with much shorter exposures than WFC-3.
 
nomadd22
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 3:50 pm

I'm looking at a space.com article from June 26 that says the Senate and House have both passed bills with different wording requiring and funding AMS launch. It also states that Griffin says all the needed hardware for launch is in the pipeline, and Nasa just needs another 300 to 400 million dollars to do add the mission. All contingent on not being too picky about the end of fiscal 2010 retirement date not slipping, I imagine.
http://www.space.com/news/080626-senate-extra-shuttle-mission.html
Anon
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 4:11 pm



Quoting Gigneil (Reply 1):
The Hubble was designed with servicing in mind, and it's needed it 4 times in less than 20 years.

Note that all but one of these missions added new, state-of-the-art instruments, allowing Hubble to use modern electronics, etc., as they became available (WFC-3 is a 16 megapixel camera system, for example.) This was a design feature dating back to the Large Space Telescope proposal in the late 1960s. Hubble also now has an order of magnitude more data storage capabilty than it did at launch, and has much faster computers, allowing it to do more work in less time.

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 1):
It served its purpose, which was to give NASA new life after Challenger.

No, Hubble was the culmination of the Large Space Telescope project that succeeded the small Orbiting Astronomical Observatories of the 1960s. It was approved in 1978 and was scheduled for launch in September, 1986, but the Challenger accident delayed it until 1990.

Quoting Gigneil (Reply 1):
They should let it fail now, and launch 3 less complicated ones in its place, up to altitudes that are beyond the Shuttle's ceiling where they are more useful at any rate.

They already launches many other astronomy satellites in service...

Chandra X-Ray Observatory (1999)
Cosmic Hot Interstellar Plasma Spectrometer (2003)
Galaxy Evolution Explorer (2003)
Gamma-Ray Large Area Space Telescope (2008)
High Energy Transient Explorer (2000)
Rossi X-Ray Timing Explorer (1995)
Spitzer Space Telescope (2003)
Submillimeter Wave Astronomy Satellite (1998)
Swift (2004)
Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe (2001)

NASA also participates in international missions such as INTEGRAL and XMM-Newton.
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Jul 26, 2008 8:12 pm



Quoting Nomadd22 (Reply 7):
I'm looking at a space.com article from June 26 that says the Senate and House have both passed bills with different wording requiring and funding AMS launch. It also states that Griffin says all the needed hardware for launch is in the pipeline, and Nasa just needs another 300 to 400 million dollars to do add the mission. All contingent on not being too picky about the end of fiscal 2010 retirement date not slipping, I imagine.

If there are no more schedule hits (say 60 days or more) they should be able to get off one more flight before the end of FY2010. The last flight is presently scheduled for May 31, 2010, leaving four months for one more flight. So everyone hope for no more hail storms or ECO sensor fiascoes.

My understanding is that they're going to refurbish the External Tank that was damaged during Hurricane Katrina (ET-122, I think) and written off. It will serve as a rescue launch's ET, if necessary. The new-build current rescue launch ET will instead fly STS-134 (AMS and probably some more spares or maybe the Spacehab module) if approved.
 
gigneil
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sun Jul 27, 2008 7:54 pm

Is the Spacehab module the inflatable one, or a fixed habitation module?

If I'm not mistaken, and I often am, Congress made the inflatable hab illegal specifically to get NASA moving on other projects - a mistake, I believe.

NS
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thre

Sun Jul 27, 2008 8:33 pm



Quoting Thorny (Reply 9):
If there are no more schedule hits (say 60 days or more) they should be able to get off one more flight before the end of FY2010.

But would they really want to do that? My impression was that they wanted to get the Shuttle program over with the least amount of flights needed to get the ISS construction finished and Hubble repaired (the only exemtion of that rule). Or did this approach towards the shuttle change recently?
 
nomadd22
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sun Jul 27, 2008 8:35 pm

Spacehab is a company. Found at the unlikely web address of spacehab.com. They supplied the pressurized modules the shuttle used for research and cargo, and unpressurized cargo carriers along with a slew of other services across all sectors of space based industries.
The Transhab inflatable module that Nasa was working on was cancelled partly at the behest of a congressman who had an interest in the Lockheed rigid habitation module, which was also never completed. Nasa sold all the rights and patents to Bigelow aerospace, who's developing the concept into hotels and research modules. He's already launched two subscale models.
The much maligned Wikipedia has a good summary of the project.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transhab
Anon
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sun Jul 27, 2008 8:48 pm



Quoting Gigneil (Reply 10):
Is the Spacehab module the inflatable one, or a fixed habitation module?

Spacehab is a small module that stays in the Shuttle's payload bay and can be used for delivering pressurized cargo to the Station when there isn't enough room in the payload bay for an MPLM. It last flew on STS-118.

You can see it in the middle of the payload bay in these photos...
http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/gallery/...tle/sts-118/hires/iss015e21732.jpg
http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/gallery/...tle/sts-118/hires/iss015e22574.jpg

Columbia was lost with the Spacehab Double Module, which is twice as long.

I think AMS will only take up about 1/3 of the payload bay, which means NASA will have a little over another third of the payload bay to fill. Spacehab could do it, or perhaps NASA will add a fifth Express Logistics Carrier.
 
nomadd22
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sun Jul 27, 2008 9:10 pm

I believe that the AMS is about 7 tons plus whatever the carrier would be, so there would be plenty of payload mass left over.
I was about to ask something about Node 3, but I guess we've drifted off the STS-125 topic enough for the thread.
Anon
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sun Jul 27, 2008 10:08 pm



Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 12):
Or did this approach towards the shuttle change recently?

Congress is pushing NASA to add one more flight for AMS. If NASA can pull that off without slipping into Fiscal Year 2011, so much the better.
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sun Aug 17, 2008 4:07 pm

NASA has elected not to advance the launch of STS-125 a few days, staying with the original launch date.

Liftoff of STS-125 is now scheduled for 1:34 am EDT, Wednesday, October 8, 2008.

Landing will be at 10:30pm EDT, Saturday, October 18.

The few days' advance had been intended to give more time to launch the subsequent flight, STS-126, before sun angles on the combined Shuttle/Station stack prevent launches from late November to late December. STS-126 is scheduled for launch on November 10, 2008.
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Aug 23, 2008 3:12 am

Delayed nearly a week by Tropical Storm Fay, Space Shuttle Atlantis rolled into the Vehicle Assembly Building late this evening. Atlantis will be attached to its External Tank, with rollout to Launch Pad 39A expected late next week.

Launch is still on schedule for October 8, but Fay ate up a big chunk of margin in the processing schedule.
 
Mir
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Mon Sep 01, 2008 10:48 pm

Rollout is scheduled for tomorrow, but with Hurricane Hanna due to at least pass by the coast if not make landfall this week, they might decide to wait until after it passes to send Atlantis to the pad.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Tue Sep 02, 2008 1:02 am

Rollout is now officially no earlier than 12:00 am Wednesday. But that's vanishingly unlikely as long as Hanna's course still has a fair chance of making landfall near Cape Canaveral. By the time we know it won't, it will be getting too close to roll out the Shuttle.

Personally, I don't expect rollout until next Saturday at the earliest unless Hanna makes a major course-change to the east. Hanna is forecast to pass Cape Canaveral on Thursday night as a Category 1 or 2. It will likely be far enough offshore that there won't be any significant damage to KSC, but it will cause weather problems for another two days beyond close approach, at least, and they need 8 hours of clear skies for rollout. Sunday or Monday rollout isn't out of the question.

This will push launch out to October 13 or 14, I think, which narrows the window for the subsequent Endeavour launch (Nov 10 currently, but slipping one-for-one with Atlantis launch delays which kick in starting around the middle of this week.) I think the odds of Endeavour flying STS-126 this year are fading fast, unless NASA changes its collective mind and decides to launch 126 from 39B (saving one week of processing time currently planned for the move from 39B to 39A.)
 
Mir
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Tue Sep 02, 2008 2:39 am

How much can the stack withstand if it's out on the pad with the RSS attached?

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Tue Sep 02, 2008 2:44 pm



Quoting Mir (Reply 20):
How much can the stack withstand if it's out on the pad with the RSS attached?

About 50 mph, if memory serves. If they expect Tropical Storm force winds, the rule is to roll back.
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Tue Sep 02, 2008 8:51 pm

Rollout to Pad 39A is now officially no earlier than Saturday. October 11 launch is still do-able, assuming Tropical Storm Hanna does not interfere with other preparations at KSC and Tropical Storm Ike does not follow the same path.
 
NoUFO
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Wed Sep 03, 2008 12:22 am

My favourite blog comes with some amazing photos (again):

http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/200...09/preparing_to_rescue_hubble.html
I support the right to arm bears
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 04, 2008 5:04 pm

Tropical Storm Hanna has moved farther east and is no longer a threat to the Cape Canaveral area.

NASA began the rollout of Atlantis at 9:19 am Thursday.

http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/detail.cfm?mediaid=37288

Click S, M, or L for small, medium or large versions of the photograph.

More pictures here...
http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/search.cfm?cat=4
 
Mir
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:19 am



Quoting Thorny (Reply 24):
Tropical Storm Hanna has moved farther east and is no longer a threat to the Cape Canaveral area.

NASA began the rollout of Atlantis at 9:19 am Thursday.

Unfortunately, with Ike on the way, NASA may have to roll back to the VAB at some point soon.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
blackknight
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:55 am

Question: How is the boost to the higher orbit (greater than the ISS) accomplished. One additional RMS boost or several? I am in the dark here can some one help? Max orbit is listed even higher than Hubble. What is the trade off's?
BK
 
Mir
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 05, 2008 4:50 pm



Quoting Blackknight (Reply 26):
How is the boost to the higher orbit (greater than the ISS) accomplished. One additional RMS boost or several?

Probably just a longer OMS 2 burn.

Thorny will probably correct me if I'm wrong, but IIRC the Shuttle launches to a highly elliptical orbit, and then uses the OMS 2 burn at apogee to even out the orbit (reduce eccentricity) to something that is relatively stable so that the Shuttle won't be pulled back to earth after a few times around. Then there are other burns that refine the orbit to whatever it needs to be.

Quoting Blackknight (Reply 26):
Max orbit is listed even higher than Hubble. What is the trade off's?

Payload. The more mass you have on the Shuttle, the more energy you're going to need to accelerate it to the appropriate velocity. Since the amount of energy on the Shuttle is limited by the amount of fuel it can take, if you want to go higher you'll need to carry less. This also applies to flights to the ISS, since they have to go to a higher inclination and thus can't take full advantage of the Earth's rotation at liftoff. Hubble is at the same inclination as KSC, so flights to Hubble can.

-Mir
7 billion, one nation, imagination...it's a beautiful day
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 11, 2008 8:31 pm

Space Shuttle Endeavour rolled into the Vehicle Assembly Building early this morning for stacking with her External Tank and Solid Rocket Boosters. Endeavour will roll out to Launch Pad 39B next week and be prepared for the rescue mission STS-400. STS-400 will launch 7-10 days after Atlantis should damage be detected that prevents Atlantis making a safe return.

Following delays caused by Tropical Storm Fay and minor technical problems, the target launch date for STS-125 is now 12:33am EDT, Friday, October 10, 2008.

Should STS-400 be unnecessary, STS-126 is targeted for launch on November 12, 2008. STS-400 will launch from Pad 39B, but if the rescue is not needed, Endeavour will be transfered to Pad 39A for the STS-126 launch. This will free Pad 39B for engineers to begin converting it for the Ares 1-X launch next summer.
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 11, 2008 9:02 pm



Quoting Thorny (Reply 28):
Should STS-400 be unnecessary, STS-126 is targeted for launch on November 12, 2008. STS-400 will launch from Pad 39B, but if the rescue is not needed, Endeavour will be transfered to Pad 39A for the STS-126 launch

Does this mean a full roll-back to VAB for Endeavour if the STS-125 mission goes as planned, or is there a shortcut to the other Pad?
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 11, 2008 9:45 pm



Quoting TheSonntag (Reply 29):
Does this mean a full roll-back to VAB for Endeavour if the STS-125 mission goes as planned, or is there a shortcut to the other Pad?

No, just a "roll around". They back out to the fork in the crawlerway between the two pads and then put it back in "forward", as it were, and go in to 39A.

It's been done once or twice before. STS-61 (the first Hubble repair mission) did it, too.
 
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eksath
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 12, 2008 12:20 pm

Here you go:

Atlantis rollout


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Suresh A. Atapattu

World Wide Aerospace Photography
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 19, 2008 1:47 pm

STS-400/STS-126 Endeavour was rolled out to Launch Pad 39B overnight Thursday/Friday, following a 24 hour delay due to weather.

Meanwhile, the STS-125 payload of Hubble servicing hardware is scheduled to be taken to Launch Pad 39A Saturday for installation in Atlantis's payload bay.

If all goes according to schedule, there will be Space Shuttles on both launch pads and neither will be obscured by their Rotating Service Structures for a few hours on Saturday morning. This should be a spectacular photo opportunity (paging Eksath!)

STS-35 and STS-41 (1990)...
http://nix.ksc.nasa.gov/info?id=S90-48650&orgid=8

It also happened with STS-64 and STS-68 in the summer of 1994.

The last time both launch pads were occupied by Space Shuttles was in the summer of 2001 by STS-104 and STS-105.
 
zanl188
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 19, 2008 4:59 pm



Quoting Thorny (Reply 32):
If all goes according to schedule, there will be Space Shuttles on both launch pads and neither will be obscured by their Rotating Service Structures for a few hours on Saturday morning. This should be a spectacular photo opportunity (paging Eksath!)

Cool... Too bad we won't see back to back or, dare i say it, simultaneous launches!!


Big version: Width: 640 Height: 480 File size: 52kb
Courtesy NASA
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Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Sat Sep 20, 2008 4:47 pm

NASA has posted photos of today's "double exposure" at the KSC media gallery...

http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/search.cfm?cat=4

Here's a nice one... click on S, M, or L for small, medium or large versions of the photo...

http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/detail.cfm?mediaid=37485
 
zanl188
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Tue Sep 23, 2008 11:37 pm

Commander Altman says the crew needs more time for training due to time lost while JSC was closed for Hurricane Ike. NASA considering slipping the launch a couple of days....

http://www.spaceflightnow.com/shuttle/sts125/080923tcdt/
Legal considerations provided by: Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe
 
zanl188
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Wed Sep 24, 2008 10:17 pm



Quoting ZANL188 (Reply 35):
NASA considering slipping the launch a couple of days....

It's official... Now launching no earlier than 14 Oct

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle/main/index.html

Sept. 24, 2008
The target launch date for space shuttle Atlantis' STS-125 mission to service the Hubble Space Telescope has been reset to Oct. 14 at 10:19 p.m. EDT. A news conference is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 3, at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida to announce an official launch date.

With the delay of Atlantis' launch from Oct. 10 to Oct. 14, shuttle Endeavour's STS-126 supply mission to the International Space Station, also will move from Nov. 12 to Nov. 16 at 7:07 p.m. EST. The target launch date adjustments were made Wednesday during the Space Shuttle Program's Flight Readiness Review, which concludes Thursday.
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Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Wed Sep 24, 2008 10:28 pm

I hope there aren't any more delays. Landing is now 8:07pm ET on Oct 25, which is 7:07 Central Time, or only a few minutes after sunset. We might barely be able to see Atlantis re-enter over Central Texas, but any more delays and the chance will be gone.
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 25, 2008 7:21 am

How long will Hubble continue to work after this servicing mission has been completed? This is the absolutely final mission to hubble, Orion cannot dock to it or be used to service it, correct?
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 25, 2008 6:09 pm

It is generally thought that this mission will take Hubble to 2013.

This mission will attach a docking target/collar to Hubble's base, so that future spacecraft can dock to it. However, Orion will be very limited in what it can do. It would need a secondary module to carry spare/replacementr parts, etc., for Hubble, but Ares I doesn't have the performance to launch that much to Hubble's orbit. The DIRECT concept could do it with performance to spare, but the NASA brass staunchly refuses to reconsider DIRECT.
 
DfwRevolution
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 25, 2008 6:10 pm

Shucks, beat to the punch  Smile

[Edited 2008-09-25 11:11:26]
 
nomadd22
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 25, 2008 8:30 pm



Quoting Thorny (Reply 39):
It is generally thought that this mission will take Hubble to 2013.

The 2013 date is just NASA's traditionly overly conservative estimate. With the gyro problem supposedly fixed and new batteries a lot of people are hoping for ops through 2018 or so.
When they were designing this thing there was talk of the lifespan being limited by degradation of the main mirror, but I never hear anything about that issue now days.
With so many quarter century old mechanisms, any one of which could halt operations, I think they'd be getting a little nervous about continuing to pour money into the old girl in the next decade. In ten years they should be comfortable enough with segmented space based mirrors to consider a 10 meter instrument in the same spectral range that Hubble gives us such pretty pictures with.
Anon
 
rwessel
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 25, 2008 10:26 pm

An article at NewScientist Space:

http://space.newscientist.com/articl...d-by-effects-of-hurricane-ike.html

According to the text one reason that NASA want to get the Hubble mission flown is that they want to get the Endeavour/ISS mission finished before November 25th, when "the inclination of the ISS to the Sun makes it impossible for the space station to generate enough electricity to power itself and the shuttle."

Can they no longer do an inertial (non-rotating) attitude, perhaps a modified XPH with a yaw to get a better angle on the sun? Or can't they do an inertial attitude with the shuttle docked?
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Thu Sep 25, 2008 11:48 pm

In the ISS's present configuration, there are periods during the year when the position of the sun relative to the plane of the orbit ("the beta angle") does not permit sufficient cooling by both the Station and Shuttle radiators as well as have enough sunlight on the Station's solar wings. So the Shuttle is not able to be docked at the Station during those periods.

http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/feedback...r/mcc/sts-113/11_23_20_01_179.html

The next Beta Angle Cut Outs (periods on the calendar when Shuttle/Station operations are not possible) are Nov 26 to Dec 17 and Jan 26 to Feb 11.

NASA generally avoids flying the Shuttle over New Years, but they can if necessary.
 
rwessel
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 26, 2008 12:12 am



Quoting Thorny (Reply 43):
In the ISS's present configuration, there are periods during the year when the position of the sun relative to the plane of the orbit ("the beta angle") does not permit sufficient cooling by both the Station and Shuttle radiators as well as have enough sunlight on the Station's solar wings. So the Shuttle is not able to be docked at the Station during those periods.

But why not alter ISS's attitude to provide the required angles. There is a non-rotating attitude (XPH) already defined for use during the assembly stage, which leaves the station always facing the same way (so that it appears to be doing a slow tumble relative to earth as it orbits). Then you could pick any angle you want.

Admittedly this might increase drag a bit, but we’re only talking a couple of weeks.
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 26, 2008 12:46 am



Quoting Rwessel (Reply 44):
But why not alter ISS's attitude to provide the required angles.

My guess is MMOD (micrometeoroid / orbital debris) concerns.
 
nomadd22
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Fri Sep 26, 2008 3:02 am



Quoting Rwessel (Reply 44):
But why not alter ISS's attitude to provide the required angles.

They might be worried about messing with the thermal cycling on the 14 billion odd parts of the station.
Anon
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Mon Sep 29, 2008 6:05 pm

BREAKING NEWS...

Hubble suffered a major failure in orbit on Saturday.

http://www.spaceflightnow.com/shuttle/sts125/080929hubble/

It is now looking like the mission will be postponed to February 2009 so that replacement hardware can be built and the astronauts can be trained in how to install it.

Someone send aspirin to NASA, because I'm sure they have serious headaches right about now.
 
DfwRevolution
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:20 pm

Is there too much paper work involved with moving the -126 payload/crew to fly on Atlantis by mid/late-October, and then fly -119 on Endeavour in November? If not, I suppose they will still fly Endeavour with -126 in November as planned.

A February launch certainly means Atlantis will be rolled-back and de-mated, which would be a shame give how close to flight readiness she is.
 
Thorny
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RE: Official STS-125 Atlantis Shuttle Mission Thread

Mon Sep 29, 2008 9:32 pm



Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 48):
Is there too much paper work involved with moving the -126 payload/crew to fly on Atlantis by mid/late-October, and then fly -119 on Endeavour in November? If not, I suppose they will still fly Endeavour with -126 in November as planned.

The Orbiter Docking System was removed from Atlantis for the Hubble mission. She can't dock at ISS until it is put back in (which requires demating and going back to the OPF) so Endeavour will still fly STS-126.

STS-119 Discovery will now be the standby Shuttle for Atlantis, evidently. Her External Tank is already on a tight schedule, so she can't fly much before the scheduled mid-February launch date, which means STS-125 Atlantis can't fly until about a week earlier than that.

Lots of unanswered questions right now, such as what happens to the Ares 1-X test launch? That can't happen until Constellation gets control of Pad 39B to modify it, something that now won't happen until February or March, pushing Ares 1-X to late 2009.

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