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Discovery - STS- 133, it's final voyage

Posted by: The Pianist

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The Pianist

Discovery will do it’s last lift off, hopefully, in just under 12 hours time.  This twenty six year old shuttle, will go on it’s last mission (STS-133) today for eleven days.  After this shuttle has returned, there are another two shuttles that go into orbit, before the Space Shuttle retires.

 This is a high risk mission.  There have already been two delays, and there is most likely going to be a third.  The first delay was due to a leak, the second to electrical problems in the cockpit and the third might be due to bad weather.  The rocket will not be fuelled unless the weather is perfect.  This means a cool platform, no lightening, and no rain, and no clouds.  There is only a 20% chance, that the weather will be suitable. 

 There are six crew members that will board the shuttle.  Their mission is to transport the Permanent Multipurpose Module (Leonardo) and the third of four ExPRESS Logistics Carriers to the International Space Station.  Another fun component in the shuttle will be Robonaut2, a robot set to help work on the International Space Station.

 This twelve day voyage, will not only mark Discovery’s 39th flight, and  the Space Shuttle programme’s 133rd flight.  But it will be the third last voyage, of one of man’s greatest inventions.  The Space Shuttle.

 Naturally, due to previous disasters such as Challenger and Columbia, the precautions must be carefully dealt with.  Such amazing science, can turn into disaster, within seconds.  And NASA has yet to develope an ejection part of the shuttle.  By now, I doubt they will.

 I look forward to seeing what space flight developes in the future, and possibly flying beyond Earth will be more affordable, than $20 million  per person.

Comments (6)Add Comment
Dissol
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written by Dissol, November 04, 2010
It is an amazing programme the Space Shuttle. But I hope that the next programmes are funded properly to continue, and the recent republicans (and crazy tea party morons) do not cut the programme.
The Pianist
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written by The Pianist, November 04, 2010
Agreed Dissol. Sigh, i hope Obama gets the Atlantis mission funded quickly before too many of them take office...
Dissol
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written by Dissol, November 07, 2010
sigh, I see that the launch has now been pushed back to 30th Nov, due to problems with the umbilical cord...
The Pianist
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written by The Pianist, November 08, 2010
It has. Rather have the fate of Endevour, than that of Columbia... That's what I always say *air punch* I think they chose wisely. Even though they had to take hundreds of thousands of litres of fuel out of the rocket again. NASA however, have called the launch of any shuttle "a work in progress", emphasizing no specific tragedy if a shuttle can't take off. I however, would prefer to be in a position to watch this work in progress on you tube at home, so they'd better keep me informed. I'm now gonna hop on to Twitter to see what Nicole Stott has to say, as one of the crew members.
Dissol
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written by Dissol, November 08, 2010
I also get Twitter updates from the Voyager II probe! Currently over 13 hours of light travel time from earth...how cool is that??!!
The Pianist
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written by The Pianist, November 08, 2010
AH i will follow thissmilies/smiley.gif

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