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July 26, 2005 [LINK]
Discovery: All systems go
When Discovery was scheduled to launch earlier this month, I was skeptical that it would actually take place because NASA has become ultra-cautious in the wake of the Columbia disaster. Millions of high-tech components have to perform flawlessly, or "no go." So, it came as a pleasant surprise that NASA officials decided to proceed with today's flight on a common-sense basis, accepting a small degree of risk. This points to one of the reasons that government-run space flight will probably be supplanted by private space enterprise in future years. Nevertheless, there will always be a compelling reason for public space exploration, if for no other reason than the inherent inextricably close relationship between national security and technology. Also, it provides lots of material for "Nova" and other public television programs. For current news on the Space Shuttle mission, see NASA.gov. This image is a video screen capture from an NBC broadcast.
(The following is repeated from my "pre-blog" post of Feb. 20, 2003):
Let's not forget the seven brave astronauts who perished so suddenly aboard the space shuttle Columbia on February 1:
- Rick D. Husband, Commander (colonel, U.S. Air Force)
- William C. McCool, Pilot (commander, U.S. Navy)
- Michael P. Anderson, Payload Commander (lieutenant colonel, U.S. Air Force)
- David M. Brown, Mission Specialist 1 (captain, U.S. Navy)
- Kalpana Chawla, Mission Specialist 2 (born in India)
- Laurel Blair Salton Clark, Mission Specialist 4 (commander, U.S. Navy)
- Ilan Ramon, Payload Specialist 1 (colonel, Israeli Air Force)
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 26 Jul 2005, 12: 21 PM
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