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back to article Endeavour heads for ISS on sixth try

Space shuttle Endeavour has finally blasted off on its mission to the International Space Station. Image courtesy NASA TV The belated liftoff of mission STS-127 from Kennedy Space Center is NASA's sixth attempt to get Endeavour off the ground. Two cancellations in June were due to a leak in the shuttle's hydrogen gas venting …

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Happy

I bet the shuttle

was in pretty good shape just before launch. Have you any mind-bogglingly obvious quotes from Nasa spokespeople to this effect?

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Flame

Godspeed?

What is the maximum airspeed of an unladen omnipotent deity?

Surely such speed would be beyond the speed of light, acceleration to which would turn the astronauts in astro-nauto-sauce.

Is praying to god/s a part of the technical specs of the shutte?

"Accident investigators found that Columbia broke up due to either not enough people praying, or malevolent action by omnipotent deities".

Why use a shuttle? Surely with enough faith you could just pray yourself into orbit, never mind the vacuum.

With an attitude like this, no wonder NASA can't get their act together. Leave religion to the religous, and flying hi-tech space craft to people who rely on training and technology rather than pleas and whining to fictional characters.

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Silver badge

Crammed?

13 people in 240 feet is hardly cramming them in! That's over 17 feet each!

Transport for London would get thousands into that kinda space (I mean the 17 feet, I can't calculate how many they'd get into 240 feet!)

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@ Pretty good shape

You'd hope so, what with the number of times all those guys had polished the hatches, filled the tanks, kicked the tires, etc.

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Unhappy

Bugger...

Shame really, I've always wanted to watch the shuttle launch and I was going to be in the area during the next available launch date after that Russian cargo pod had moved out the way...

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Alert

@Jeremy

You need to try and get there for one mate, I saw Endeavour launch as STS118 back in August '07 and you don't just watch or hear a shuttle take off, you feel it. No kidding, from where we were on the river back opposite KSC you feel the noise in your chest.

Get there before they finish!

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NASA TV

the NASA TV Live feed runs about 60 seconds behind spaceflightnows live feed from NASA..... shame that FSN has such poor quality Jerky and unwatchable...

Missed the shuttle transit from the UK was a thin layer of cloud but saw the ISS following up at about 11:40 crossed about half the sky before it passed into shadow.

Was thinking if they had to abort (due to say a main engine failure) and had to land in spain would they get the world record for fastest Atlantic crossing??

So does anyopne know where they dropped the Main Tank last night??

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@ Parax

'So does anyopne know where they dropped the Main Tank last night??'

It's jettisoned into the Indian Ocean, but they ensure it tumbles on re-entry so that it breaks up at altitude.

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@Godspeed

It's not a religous thing, it's to overcome the lack of numeracy in american schools.

The speedo on the shuttle is calibrated in 'slow, moving a bit, weeeee, god that's fast and F@@@ me. So godspeed was simply telling them to turn the dial to the third click.

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@Mike Richards

Thanks, that would be a good half hour (45mins?) after launch then?! I could have sworn they dropped it way earlier (shortly after meco) I obviously spent to long listening and not watching...

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@ Parax

'Thanks, that would be a good half hour (45mins?) after launch then?! I could have sworn they dropped it way earlier (shortly after meco) I obviously spent to long listening and not watching...'

You're right, the ET's jettisoned about 8 1/2 minutes after launch just after MECO; but it's only just sub-orbital so the burn-up is between 60 and 80 minutes after launch. It only needs a small change in velocity to put it into LEO, so during the 1980s there were a number of studies about putting the ET into orbit as the basis of a space station.

Yesterday's launch is here, the tank is jettisoned around 9 minutes in:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_MlgxV1lqo

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@ Elsie

'Get there before they finish!'

Yep, there's going to be a big gap in launches before the Ares V flies.

NASA doesn't have that launching until 2018; but that's going to be a monster - 110m tall and 3,300 tonnes - it'll be like the good old days of the Saturn V. Now if only they'd built the Nova - that'd have been TWICE as powerful as the Saturn V; and if they hadn't had a sudden attack of 'what if it all went wrong?', the upper stage would have been nuclear.

If only they'd put Gerry Anderson in charge of the space programme.

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