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Space Shuttle Discovery rescheduled for Nov 30 - SpacePod 2010.11.08

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Discovery is being a diva - The final flight of OV-103 -- delayed on your SpacePod for November 8th, 2010. Kennedy Space Center in Florida was a flurry of activity this last week. NASA held a TweetUp hosting 160 people from 5 different continents. Press was not only broadcasting live to local television stations but also nationally and online and there was a general excitement and buzz in the air as the final flight of Space Shuttle Discovery was slated to lift off from Pad 39A November 1st, 2010. Then, a leak was found in the right Orbital Maneuvering System or OMS Pod, which pushed the launch to November 2nd. A minor electrical glitch pushed the launch back two more days to November 4th. Then on the 4th abysmal weather pushed the launch back yet again to the 5th, but that was looking to be it. That was the day. That was going to be the final flight of the Space Shuttle Discovery. But Discovery was having none of that! As fuel started loading in to the external tank a hydrogen leak was detected. This stopped the countdown, and threatened to push the launch back yet another 24 to 72 hours. As NASA was attempting to find and then repair the leak a second issue cropped up. Part of the external tank's foam was cracked and ice had formed inside. This was on the side of the tank that faces the underbelly of Discovery, so if that foam were to fly off at say 300 miles per hour and hit the orbiter, very bad things could happen to the heat shield. Ultimately NASA has decided to push the launch off of Space Shuttle Discovery until no earlier than November 30th. Now, that doesn't mean it's going to take off on the 30th, it just means it can't launch before then. While many of the tweeters at the press site didn't get a chance to see Discovery launch on her final mission, there is actually some good news to come out of all of this. First, it shows that NASA is not cutting any corners and will launch when they are ready. Hey, human space flight IS hard and this IS actually rocket science. Second, until now there were no additional night launches scheduled. Now that Discovery has been pushed back in to late November to early December the launch time has changed as well. We're looking at a 4:05am Eastern Standard Time launch, which means it will be completely dark when those boosters finally do ignite! Hey if Discovery is going to go out, she clearly wants to do it in style. If you thought you had missed your opportunity to see the shuttle launch at night, well, you may have been presented with a golden ticket. There is NOTHING like seeing and feeling a shuttle launch in person. We will keep you updated with additional details of launch times, but if you can find a way to make it to Florida to see this final launch, make it happen! You don't need to buy any special viewing tickets or anything like that, Space View Park in Titusville has an amazing view and it is completely free. This is your chance to see history in the making and possibly see one of the final night launch of the most awesome vehicle humans have ever built. If you simply can't make it down to Florida, then Spacevidcast will be covering the launch in HD quality online, sponsored by Perforce who got us the new broadcasting system able to not only get you 720p live HD streaming, but also mobile streaming to your smartphones, roku boxes and your computer. So no matter what you'll have an awesome seat for this last flight of the fleet's workhorse: Orbital Vehicle 103 also known as Discovery.

Video Details

Duration: 3 minutes and 22 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Genre: None
Views: 70
Posted by: spacevidcast on Nov 8, 2010

Discovery is being a diva - The final flight of OV-103 -- delayed on your SpacePod for November 8th, 2010.
Kennedy Space Center in Florida was a flurry of activity this last week. NASA held a TweetUp hosting 160 people from 5 different continents. Press was not only broadcasting live to local television stations but also nationally and online. There was a general excitement and buzz in the air as the final flight of Space Shuttle Discovery was slated to lift off from Pad 39a on November 1st. Then, a leak was found in the right Orbital Maneuvering System or OMS Pod pushed the launch to November 2nd. A minor electrical glitch pushed the launch back two more days to November 4th. Then on the 4th abysmal weather pushed the launch back yet again to the 5th, but that was looking to be it. That was the day. That was going to be the final flight of Discovery.
But Space Shuttle Discovery was having none of that! As fuel started loading in to the external tank a hydrogen leak was detected. This stopped the countdown, and threatened to push the launch back yet another 24 to 72 hours. As NASA was attempting to find and repair the leak a second issue cropped up. Part of the external tanks foam was cracked and ice had formed. This was on the side of the tank that faces the underbelly of Discovery, so if that foam were to fly off at say 300 miles per hour and hit the orbiter, very bad things could happen. Ultimately NASA has decided to push off the launch of Space Shuttle Discovery until no earlier than November 30th. That doesn't mean it will launch on the 30th, it just means it CAN NOT launch before then.
While many of the tweeters at the press site didn't get a chance to see Discovery launch on her final mission, there is some good news to come out of all of this. First, it shows that NASA is not cutting corners and will launch when they are ready. Hey, human space flight IS hard and it IS rocket science. Second, until now there were no additional night launches scheduled. Now that Discovery has been pushed back in to late November to early December the launch time has changed as well. We're looking at a 4:05am Eastern Standard Time launch, which means it will be completely dark when those boosters finally do ignite!
Hey if Discovery is going to go out, she clearly wants to go out in style. If you thought you had missed your opportunity to see a shuttle night launch, well, you may have been presented with a golden ticket. There is NOTHING like seeing and feeling a shuttle launch in person. We will keep you updated with additional launch details, but if you can find a way to make it to Florida to see this final launch, make it happen! You don't need to buy viewing tickets, Space View Park in Titusville has an amazing view and it is completely free. This is your chance to see history in the making and possibly see one final night launch of the most awesome vehicle humans have ever built.
If you simply can't make it down to Florida, then Spacevidcast will be covering the launch in HD quality online, sponsored by Perforce who got us the new broadcasting system able to not only get you 720p live HD streaming, but also mobile streaming to your smartphones, roku boxes and computer. So no matter what you'll have awesome seats for this last flight of the fleets workhorse: Orbital Vehicle 103 also known as Discovery.

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