Monday, April 26, 2010

Final shuttle mission now targets November

NASA plans to swap the shuttle program's two final missions, which means the last orbiter won't fly until November -- two months later than originally planned.

Endeavour's mission to the International Space Station will move from its planned flight on July 29 to November, NASA officials said today. No exact date has been set. But NASA faces a launch blackout between Nov. 8 and Nov. 25. The sun angle on the station at that time will be such that the outpost could not generate enough electricity or dispel enough heat to host a visiting shuttle.

The postponement was prompted by a delay in readying the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer for flight.

Space shuttle Discovery, which had been planned as the final mission, will still target a Sept. 16 launch. But when its wheels touch back down on Earth, it will herald the end of Discovery's career - but not the end of the program.

That title will fall to Endeavour.

NASA has $600 million in funding from Congress to carry out the program through the end of this year - a decision that was made to reduce the danger of schedule pressure.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

The slippin and sliding has begun, USA slipped a payoff to the payload processor to help slide! Next move will be to postpone through the Christmas holidays so they can get paid. They will keep this thing going with or without Mr Prez's support.

Anonymous said...

What ever it takes to keep these people working for a while longer.

Anonymous said...

Thats beautiful a stay of execution ! Layoffs just in time for the holidays yeah!

Anonymous said...

With any luck they will be able to push this off until next year. Nobody wants to be laid off but at the holidays really suck big time. I know alot of these people and they are good hardworking people and the President should be ashamed of himself.

dnieds said...

No matter how much time it takes or how far they stretch the schedule out after these three flights, there is only ONE external tank left (for use on an if needed rescue mission)

Thats it. Done . . . Over . . . . Finished . . . .

The US will be a Third rate space power.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a sign that the shuttles need to continuing flying? By the way, there are I think 2 or 3 External Tanks at Michoud. They have all some damage from Katarina and could be repaired for later use.

Anonymous said...

So let me get this straight. All you folks just got 2 more months of paychecks and all of you are complaining about being laid off right before the holidays. Quit in September and save youself's all that trauma. Don't worry the cash cow is alive and well!! Let's do the math.. 600 million from congress.. 200 million a month to keep the shuttle alive X 2 = 400 million. If your lucky, you can ride this puppy right into January.

Mortimier said...

Unemployment Insurance for a "rocket science"? I'm sorry, but I don't hear any forclosure signs being hammered into any of those homes. Sucks? I think it'll be alright for now. We'll be back up there when we can afford the ticket.

Anonymous said...

I agree lay them off in September; Nobody wants to be laid off around the holidays that will really suck big time.

Anonymous said...

Weak reporting.

Anonymous said...

Time to layoff the Democratic and Republican Congress and Senators in November that did not support the Space Shuttle extension.

Anonymous said...

As long as space programs are seen as job programs we will get NOwhere.

Greetings from Austria

Anonymous said...

Well there is one thing not being discussed here...what this does to local hotels who were planning on a big bump for their Summer this July. There goes that. So when thinking about how this will help out some workers for a couple of months, think about what this does to the server, the bellboy, the valet, the housekeeper etc at the local hotels and motels. I bet the amount of refunds being handed out today across the county were enormous with this announcement. Now, with a potential high season launch? The hotels won't be able to capitalize on the extra business...it will just morph into what would have been booked anyway.

Anonymous said...

Bush killed the Shuttle program, not Obama. Just like Nixon killed Apollo in the early 1970s and pulled the plug on any plans for a Mars mission. We've been locked in LEO ever since.