APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Comments and questions about the APOD on the main view screen.
sbdeadelf

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by sbdeadelf » Thu Jul 14, 2011 12:30 am

It isn't half full or half empty, and especially not twice as big as it needs to be....
after all- the shuttle MUST have space.
ar ar ar.
=)

Phil Sayre

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by Phil Sayre » Thu Jul 14, 2011 12:45 am

Is there a good reason why this is the last shuttle, when we don't have anything else to fly up there? I'm sorry, but it makes no sense to me.

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Chris Peterson
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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by Chris Peterson » Thu Jul 14, 2011 12:55 am

Phil Sayre wrote:Is there a good reason why this is the last shuttle, when we don't have anything else to fly up there? I'm sorry, but it makes no sense to me.
The shuttles are old, both physically and in terms of their underlying technology. It is increasingly difficult to fly them safely, but simply building new ones using old technology doesn't make much sense. The primary value of the shuttles was their ability to carry a heavy payload, which was important in constructing the ISS. Now that the ISS is finished, however, that heavy lift capacity is no longer needed. It is massively uneconomical to use shuttles for nothing more than carrying people up and down from low Earth orbit. A Soyuz can do that for less than 1/10 the cost. So what all this means is that there is very little need for the shuttles anymore, and no existing programs that would justify replacing them.
Chris

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islader2

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by islader2 » Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:07 am

Wow! Three pages of posts on this APOD==including some from people who do not know the Kingdom of the Bahamas from the {old} Kingdom of Italy. :(

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alter-ego
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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by alter-ego » Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:15 am

Chris Peterson wrote:
Phil Sayre wrote:Is there a good reason why this is the last shuttle, when we don't have anything else to fly up there? I'm sorry, but it makes no sense to me.
The shuttles are old, both physically and in terms of their underlying technology. It is increasingly difficult to fly them safely, but simply building new ones using old technology doesn't make much sense. The primary value of the shuttles was their ability to carry a heavy payload, which was important in constructing the ISS. Now that the ISS is finished, however, that heavy lift capacity is no longer needed. It is massively uneconomical to use shuttles for nothing more than carrying people up and down from low Earth orbit. A Soyuz can do that for less than 1/10 the cost. So what all this means is that there is very little need for the shuttles anymore, and no existing programs that would justify replacing them.
Yes.
It is time to retire the shuttles, and begin to commercialize the LEO transport technology - NASA has a place in space exploration, and that place is not wasting it's resources on ferrying people and garbage to and from LEO. I am optimistic that despite a seemingly bumpy road ahead for NASA and US (and the world for that matter), it is time to move on. I expect at least a decade of transition for NASA, and in the long run, I think it is this path that will pay off and ultimately keep US at the forefront of space exploration and its technology. Change is always difficult, but with change comes unforseen, even greater rewards. As of today, it is more important to get the JWST to launch than it is another shuttle.
This is my humble opinion.
A pessimist is nothing more than an experienced optimist

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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by DavidLeodis » Thu Jul 14, 2011 1:44 pm

The location quiz may have been harder if in the information brought up through the 'Pictured above' link it did not state "The space shuttle Atlantis is seen over the Bahamas". Easy peasy really! :)

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BMAONE23
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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by BMAONE23 » Thu Jul 14, 2011 1:56 pm

You mean there was a link that stated what was below???
Man, I gotta read those links!!! :wink:

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bystander
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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by bystander » Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:43 pm

Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
— Garrison Keillor

Guest

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by Guest » Thu Jul 14, 2011 10:59 pm

Eluthera Island, New Providence Island ( Nassau ), Bahamas. SharTomG.

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neufer
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Obtuse Goose

Post by neufer » Fri Jul 15, 2011 1:36 am

bystander wrote:
Abstruse Goose
http://www.planetary.org/blog/article/00003099/ wrote:
House Committee Votes the Wrong Way – JWST to be Canceled
by Charlene Anderson,Jul. 14, 2011

<<Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representative's Appropriations Committee marked up the bill covering NASA's budget that was sent to it by the Commerce, Justice, and Science (CJS) Subcommittee, and the results will not make Planetary Society supporters happy.

For example:
-- An amendment to overturn the cancellation of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) was defeated.
-- An amendment to add money to commercial crew development also failed.
-- The budget request for NASA's Space Technology program remains cut by 60 percent.

The big winner in today's House committee action was again the Space Launch System, the rocket legislated by Senate committee, which was given even more money than requested in NASA's proposed budget.

The appropriations bill now goes to the floor of the House of Representative for a vote by all 435 members, possibly next week, or possibly after the annual August recess. It is probable that another amendment to save JWST will be offered from the floor, but prospects for its passage are not good.>>
* SIGH *
Please, please, pleeease, Russians, buy the JWST and rename it the Yuri Gagarin Space Telescope :!:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Launch_System wrote: <<The Space Launch System, or SLS, is a Shuttle-Derived heavy launch vehicle being designed by NASA, following the cancellation of the Constellation Program, to replace the Space Shuttle after its retirement. The NASA Authorization Act of 2010 envisions the transformation of the Ares I and Ares V vehicle designs into a single launch vehicle usable for both crew and cargo. It is to be upgraded over time with more powerful versions.

The Space Launch System is to be a Shuttle-Derived heavy launch vehicle and is to be upgraded over time. The initial capability of the core elements, without an upper stage, should be for between 70 tons and 100 tons into low-Earth orbit (LEO) in preparation for transit for missions beyond low-Earth orbit. With the addition of integrated upper Earth Departure Stage the total lift capability of the Space Launch System should be 130 tons or more.

Preliminary designs indicate that the current Space Shuttle Main Engines (RS-25) and Space Shuttle Solid Rocket Boosters would be utilized, and much of the External Tank design would remain the same. This design would require dramatically less development time than the Ares V heavy lift launch vehicle.

On May 24, 2011, NASA announced that development of the Orion from the Constellation program will continue under the name Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV). NASA was expected to make an announcement on July 8 about the SLS's Shuttle-based configuration. For early flights it has an 8.4-meter diameter core with RS-25 engines, 8.4-meter upper stage with J-2X engine, and 4 to 5 segment solid rocket boosters. However, further evaluations have delayed NASA's decision on SLS until late July or August 2011. On June 17, 2011, Aerojet announced a strategic partnership with Teledyne Brown to develop and produce a domestic version of the NK-33 engine, with its thrust increased to 500,000 lbf at sea level. This booster is to compete against Shuttle-derived solid rocket boosters for the SLS launch vehicle.>>
Last edited by neufer on Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:10 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Art Neuendorffer

alabala33

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by alabala33 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 12:15 pm

Indonesia and australia

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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by NGC3314 » Fri Jul 15, 2011 2:11 pm

rwb wrote:One serious question: Why have they almost always opened the bay doors early in the mission? Is there a cooling issue, or is there some other reason, such as making a shuttle more visible to observers?
Cooling - there are large radiators attached to the inner sides of the doors, and if for some reason they cannot be opened, the mission must be terminated quickly (within hours, IIRC). The Shuttle cooling design also assumes a one-orbit day-night cycle. The ISS orbit is at high enough inclination to be in continuous sunlight for brief periods around the solstices, and shuttle visits have not been possible during these times.

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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by NoelC » Sat Jul 16, 2011 2:57 am

Cargo bay only half full... Obvious inefficiency and waste.

Couldn't anyone think of anything else (even something light) to send up? If not, why send it so soon?

-Noel

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Re: Obtuse Goose

Post by neufer » Sat Jul 16, 2011 11:43 am

Last edited by neufer on Sat Jul 16, 2011 3:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Art Neuendorffer

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Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by owlice » Sat Jul 16, 2011 12:10 pm

I think that YouTube needs to be emailed to every member of the House of Representatives.
A closed mouth gathers no foot.

Omegaman

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by Omegaman » Sun Jul 17, 2011 9:41 am

It has already been posted, but since some are still offering wrong guesses, he is the caption from the picture on another site:

ISS028-E-015805 (10 July 2011) --- The space shuttle Atlantis is seen over the Bahamas prior to a perfect docking with the International Space Station at 10:07 a.m. (CDT). Part of a Russian Progress spacecraft which is docked to the station is in the foreground.

Bripie

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by Bripie » Sun Jul 17, 2011 4:48 pm

How can we find out the answer to what land mass lies below?

Bripie

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by Bripie » Sun Jul 17, 2011 4:51 pm

...specifically, what island in the bahamas?

nGuinn

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by nGuinn » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:00 am

alter-ego wrote:
nGuinn wrote::?: Does anyone know where the LCM (Lightweight Multi-Purpose Carrier) is in this photo? :?: Were it and the RRM already offloaded before docking and the taking of this photo? I don't see the LCM anywhere - the payload bay seems to be missing something :?
As Davico said, the LCM is located at the engine end of the cargo bay, supporting the MPLM. The picture here shows the LMC (aka Lightweight Multi-Purpose Equipment Support Structure Carrier) carrying an ammonia tank assembly. You can see this same framework in the APOD.
Thanks, Davico & alter-ego. I had a feeling someone here would know the answer to my question!

The LCM is smaller than I expected - I expected it would be about 4x that size. I thought what is actually the LCM was Shuttle structural support for the cargo bay and/or mounting points for cargo. Turns out it is a mounting structure for cargo, but not a permanent one - it's the LCM! :)

While entirely impractical for many reasons, the idea of parking a shuttle in high orbit does have a sense of beauty and would be rather fitting.

MyTaraven

Re: APOD: Atlantis Last Approach (2011 Jul 13)

Post by MyTaraven » Sat Aug 27, 2011 11:17 am

Could it be Novaya Zemlya in the Arctic Circle?