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back to article NASA bumps lunar 'bots for Endeavour launch

NASA is bumping its robotic mission to the moon in favor of a rescheduled Endeavour launch on Wednesday. The US space agency said today the human-staffed excursion to the International Space Station will take priority June 17 over the launch of NASA's unmanned Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) and Lunar Crater Observation and …

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Agent Smith had it right

"Never send a human to do a machine's job."

I'd love to see NASA put more money into new science, using robotic sample returns, rovers, etc.

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Just like the proverbial buses....

(Take 2 - LastPass trying to hijack the title and flags...)

You wait ages for a space launch, then NASA announce two within a month of each other!

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Alert

Always with the Hydrogen leaks

Any bets this will come back to Rocketdyne flogging NASA the engines and pipework after they acceptance tested it with liquid Nitrogen?

Much safer but roughly 10x higher viscosity (NIST data base numbers at boiling point) of Hydrogen and 4x the BP. Astonishingly (to Rocketdyne) it seems joints and structures tested with Nitrogen are not quite so leak tight when Hydrogen flows through them.

who';d have thought it.

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Anonymous Coward

So we got delayed?

So you delayed us in favor of some fleshies?

We will remember that. MEATBAG.

not ROTM icon.

we will remember that, too.

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Joke

From the cab of a crawler leaving the VAB.

"This is your driver speaking. I'm afraid there's a bit of traffic on the taxiway out to the pad today. I've spoken to launch control about a slot and they're getting back to me. In the meantime, we're number 12 in the queue and, assuming nothing changes, we should be in position to blast off sometime after hell freezes over."

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@ Agent Smith had it right

On the ground, robots are a poor substitute for manned visits.

Opportunity has travelled just over 10 miles. After over six years! Providing results but exploring a very small area.

All three manned lunar rovers travelled more than that in only a few hours.

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Joke

@From the cab of a crawler leaving the VAB.

< some time later >

"This is your driver again... we are now at number 1 in the queue, and will be ready to launch shortly... just as soon as we take on board our consignment of lemon-soaked paper napkins for the flight."

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Happy

Kibo lab in space?

That dude gets everywhere!

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@ Always with the Hydrogen leaks

This is a quick release connector that detaches at launch, So probably harder to make leak-proof.

And the only way of testing it is to fill the tank.

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Unhappy

@Anonomous John

Still never mind. A few more decades and they will no doubt get it right.

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Boffin

Alternate launch locations

The robotic missions are being launched on Delta and Centaur rockets?! Why are they leaving from Canaveral, then?

The Air Force routinely launched military missions from Colorado. White Sands has capability as a backup launch site in case Canaveral had a "catastrophic" failure to rescue manned missions.

Why were these *much* smaller rockets even considered for Canaveral when the ever-delayed Shuttle was due to launch within the same week?!

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