Space Shuttle Endeavour To Launch, 7th Feb 2010


Champion Elect
I know that I seem to have a Space Shuttle complex going on, but I just love watching this stuff. I just never get tired of it! :)

Anyway, this weekend sees another launch of the Shuttle, this time it's Endeavour's turn. Mission STS-130 takes off 09.39am on Sunday 7th of February. For a video of Edeavour rolling out to the lauch pad, click this link.]Endeavor Rollout[/url]

Here's a countdown clock and Mission Calendar. Click here for a brief summary of the upcoming mission and relevant links.

Essentially, they're taking something large (called Tranquillity Node 3) to the International Space Station. According to the Wiki page, the node contains the most advanced life support systems ever flown in space, (i.e. a tiolet! :snigger: )

There will be a few other things happening, like three space walks, so the best way to keep abreast of things is by checking out this schedule for NASA TV.

The launch coverage starts at 4.30am on Sunday, so you might want to set your alarms! Don't worry though, the launch is at 9.39am, so the sleepy heads can sleep in!

There are only a hand-full of Shuttle missions remaining, before the Shuttle fleet is retired. History in the making, again brought to you by NASA, via Clip_the_Apex! :D

For any NASA/ISS buffs, here's a Launch Manifest of future missions.
Nice one McZ :thumbsup:

It never ceases to amaze me the way the shuttle was designed to be built away from the launch pad and then transported there by possibly the largest vehicle ever built at 1mph.

So technologically advanced and yet such a backward solution.
Interestingly here is the other solution. This is a picture of Shuttle Launch Complex 6 at Vandenberg Air Force Base. It was originally conceived to launch Shuttles from the West Coast of the states in order to meet a launch schedule of about one shuttle per week.

This picture was taken some time in 1985 and shows Enterprise on a dummy stack on the launch pad. The Shuttle was assembled on the pad and then the pay load check out facilities and hanger would be rolled back to allow the shuttle to launch.

This was as close as Vandenberg got to a real shuttle launch due to the challenger disaster. All flights from Vandenberg were at first postponed and then cancelled. Most of the facilities in the picture have now been taken down or converted for other use.

Now this is for the real space nuts. The first few shuttle missions were designated STS1, STS2 etc. With there being two launch sites NASA realised they would need a different method of numbering to distinguish between the various missions in preperation. It was last used for the Challenger mission and which was designated STS 51-L which broke down as 5 = the financial year in which the mission was manifested, 1 = Launch from Kennedy and L was the sequence of the mission that year A, B, C etc. The first mission from Vandenberg Airforce Base would have been STS 62-J which would have been flown by Robert Crippen (co-pilot on the very first shuttle mission) around July of 1986. John Young was scheduled to make a record breaking 7th space flight on the second Vandeneberg mission later that year.


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Vandenberg would also have given the option of polar orbit launches with a view to launching certain satellites with a big classified stamp on them :)
I am, personally speaking, quite happy. I slept in this morning! :embarrassed:
Can't think why... :whistle:
Tomorrow morning sounds good for me... :D

The alternative view being, of course, is 'cos they caught aliens!
The launch went ahead this morning. The last "night launch" of a space shuttle, I think. It was as exciting as always. Just imagining how it must feel to be attached to all that Oxygen & Hydrogen sends shivers...

Also, don't know if anyone was aware, but there is a Brit on board. Nicholas Patrick is mission specialist and will partake in the three space walks. :)
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