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NASA Identifies Damage to Shuttle Endeavour's Heat Tiles

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posted on Aug, 10 2007 @ 06:18 PM
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NASA Identifies Damage to Shuttle Endeavour's Heat Tiles


www.forbes.com

CAPE CANAVERAL, FLA. - NASA discovered a worrisome gouge on Endeavour's belly soon after the shuttle docked with the international space station Friday, possibly caused by ice that broke off the fuel tank a minute after liftoff.

The gouge - about 3 inches square - was spotted in zoom-in photography taken by the space station crew shortly before the linkup.

"What does this mean? I don't know at this point," said John Shannon, chairman of the mission management team...
(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Aug, 10 2007 @ 06:18 PM
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It looks like a piece of ice bounced down the orbiter's belly, leaving several large gouges. I guess it's not clear yet what course of action will be taken.

www.forbes.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Aug, 10 2007 @ 06:24 PM
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I see a space walk coming and some duct tape and super glue...

No seriously, they'll get out there and fix it somehow. Or NASA will say it's safe, come on home.



posted on Aug, 10 2007 @ 06:35 PM
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For those that didn't see the live NASA conference, there are three repair options.

1. a heat reflective black paint;
2. an overlay patch for larger sections;
3. a kind of abatement 'goo' that can get into crevices.

I would presume a combination of 1 and 3 for this particular defect, if it turns out to be a gouge.

Should point out that it was emphasized in the Co that it was premature, and that, indeed, the SS has landed even with whole tiles missing.

Obviously the placement of the missing tiles or defect is important, leading edge tiles being very important. This one was placed approximately 4 feet from a wheel well, iirc.

Hope it turns out to be nothing.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 01:17 AM
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I have this strange gut feeling that Endevour might have an unfortunate mishap on the way back in. I hate to say that, I really do - something just doesn't feel right about this one. I think I read something about this somewhere too... wonder if I can find that again.

Preparing for the worst, hoping for the best.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 11:13 AM
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Anyone else noticed how, for years there were space shuttles up there every other week, no problems whatsoever. And now, they can barely take off without falling apart?

Spider sense...tingling...



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 11:21 AM
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Rik,

I think that's a misrepresentation of what the record is. Let's restate like this:

For years they were going up, not checking for damage in orbit, coming back and finding damage. Then one day damage destroyed a shuttle and now they look every time they get to orbit. Low and behold all that damage they detected upon return is now visible right after launch.

As far as I know there was never a single shuttle mission that the shuttle did not have damage on inspection after the return.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 11:32 AM
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The survey of the series of gouges in the OP is being run in the next few minutes. It's on NASA-TV for those with an interest. www.nasa.gov/ntv

Vic



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 03:19 PM
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Originally posted by Rikhart
Spider sense...tingling...

I'm with ya dude. Trouble is afoot... according to my instincts anyways.


Valhall, i understand what you are saying - its worth mentioning again that the SYS missions have always incurred damage, we just haven't always given so much media focus to it. Still though, I have this funny feeling about Endevour. I hope to God that she comes home safely, but wouldn't be suprised if something were to happen.


VKaminski, thanks for the update. Would you mind posting the information presented in that news brief?

[edit on 8/12/2007 by damajikninja]



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 03:40 PM
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These bloddy machines are falling apart! Seems like every time they take off something falls off. Nasa needs to pull it's finger out and get a new vehicle commishined pronto beofre you get another tragedy.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 03:43 PM
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As Val said earlier, they have ALWAYS had some kind of damage to the shuttles upon return. Even from the early days in the program. There was just not much coverage of the damage, because the shuttle landed safely each time, until Columbia. Since Columbia, every little scratch is suddenly flight threatening damage. I remember hearing of orbiters coming back with 3-4 complete tiles missing or more.



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 03:51 PM
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Zaphod is right, shuttle damage has been the status quo for a long time. It has only been in recent years that the shuttle program has been put under the microscope.

This much is fact - regardless of your personal convictions, beliefs,and feelings regarding anything NASA related. That being said, I still feel odd about this flight. Of course, my feelings are purely circumstantial and cannot be entered into any rational discussion. I would love to be wrong!



posted on Aug, 12 2007 @ 06:53 PM
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Here is the photo of the damage on the shuttle. To me it doesn't look deadly serious, but I'm not an expert.



Here is ABC report with updates:
Astronauts Zoom in on Shuttle Gash



posted on Aug, 13 2007 @ 01:38 PM
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I stand corrected then, wasn´t aware they usually returned with damage, even in the past.

Anyway, these vehicules are soo ancient now


Maybe they could unveil some really old "covert tech" from about 10 years ago, to replace it



posted on Aug, 13 2007 @ 02:04 PM
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Rikhart, NASA has announced that that Shuttle Program will end in X number of years. There have been threads about this here at ATS. Use the ATS/Google Search thingee at the top of the page to find them.

I am not aware of what the new platform will be, but I'm sure NASA/DoD has a sketch-up somewhere that they are working on. They may have already disclosed that info and I just missed it.

Anyways, just wanted to point out that the end of the Shuttle Program IS in sight - like you say, those old buckets have antique license plates.


[edit on 8/13/2007 by damajikninja]



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