flymia
Topic Author
Posts: 6867
Joined: Thu Jun 14, 2001 6:33 am

ISS/Space Shuttle Wake Up Times

Sun Jul 17, 2011 5:09 am

Since this is the last shuttle mission I have been watching NASA tv a lot. One thing which I do not understand at all and have look on the internet for is how Houston decides when to wake up the crews. The first few days of the mission the crews were woken up at somewhat normal hours at least for here in the east coast US. Now they are waking up at 10-11pm on the east coast so 3-4am GMT. Are they gradually making them used to waking up early for their pre-dawn arrival into the Space Center on Thursday?

Also one more thing I do not understand why did they plan an early morning arrival? That just seems like poor planning people want to watch this. The views from the shuttle and of the space craft wont be that great and now I am waking up at 5:30 in the morning to catch the end of it. Why not plan for a 9am arrival?
"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
 
kalvado
Posts: 525
Joined: Wed Mar 01, 2006 4:29 am

RE: ISS/Space Shuttle Wake Up Times

Sun Jul 17, 2011 5:22 am

Quoting flymia (Thread starter):

Also one more thing I do not understand why did they plan an early morning arrival? That just seems like poor planning people want to watch this. The views from the shuttle and of the space craft wont be that great and now I am waking up at 5:30 in the morning to catch the end of it. Why not plan for a 9am arrival?

Arrival (and take-off) times planning is based on orbital motion of the ship. Shuttle can land within a certain corridor from projection of its orbit. As Earth rotates, landing sites move within the reach, and move out of reach. If orbital motion brings KSC strip within the reach of orbiting Shuttle at 7 AM - you either land at 7, land elsewhere, or stay in space until next day - no other options. OK, maybe there is a second opportunity for 8.30 - but if there are no issues (weather is OK, systems normal), NASA will use first chance.

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