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Posted: 11/21/2003 12:53:02 PM EDT
How different is that from "if it happens"? Not a good thing to hear about when the Chinese in such a hurry to take our place up there.


Next Shuttle Launch 'Will Be When it Happens'
By Jim Banke
Senior Producer,
Cape Canaveral Bureau
posted: 06:00 pm ET
18 November 2003




CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- NASA is hopeful that the space shuttle fleet will resume flying as early as Sept. 12, 2004, but time-consuming efforts to develop in-flight repair kits and solve other technical hurdles could alter those plans.

Though such a delay would be fine, senior shuttle officials said Tuesday.

"We're trying to launch when we can, safely. And if that means we launch in September, that's fine. If it means we don't launch a flight, any flight, in 2004, that's fine too," said astronaut Jim Halsell, who is coordinating NASA's return to flight efforts. "It will be when it happens."

Halsell's comments were in response to a question from a reporter who asked what the current probability was that the space agency would be able to get two shuttle missions off the ground by the end of 2004.

"We have not asked ourselves that question because it's not relevant to what we're doing right now," the veteran shuttle commander said.

The Columbia Accident Investigation Board (CAIB) report cited schedule pressure to complete the next phase of International Space Station construction as a contributing cause of the Feb. 1 loss of Columbia. As a result, the mantra of safety before schedule is trying to make a come back at NASA.

"Asking how late we can launch one flight to still make (a second) flight in 2004 is a throwback to the way we did business prior to STS-107. We're not doing business anymore like that," Halsell said.

Shuttle program manager Bill Parsons has ordered the United Space Alliance teams at Kennedy Space Center to prepare both Atlantis and Discovery for the return to flight mission.

Atlantis has the slight edge for flying first on the STS-114 mission and it won't be long before one or the other will have to be selected, but for now the agency is keeping its options open.

"Don't get caught up in which one is assigned at this point in time because that could change," Parsons said.

Both vehicles are far from being ready to fly right now. Discovery is being put back together following a major maintenance period, and Atlantis is missing several major components that were removed for testing.

As that processing work moves forward, shuttle workers in other parts of the nation continue their efforts to solve some of the specific technical problems addressed by the CAIB report.

The biggest hurdle right now seems to be how to detect flaws and then repair reinforced carbon-carbon (RCC) in orbit.

The RCC material is used to form the leading edge of a shuttle's wings, as well as the nose cap and a panel between the nose cap and the nose landing gear bay. The composite material helps protect the shuttle from the hottest temperatures of re-entry.

It was a breach in an RCC panel -- caused by a piece of foam shed from the external tank during launch -- that allowed hot gases inside Columbia's left wing and triggered the tragedy.

Shuttle managers and engineers are working on ways to inspect the RCC material in space for any signs of damage and then be able to send spacewalking astronauts outside to take care of the problem if needed.

A similar effort is happening at the same time for the heat protection tiles, and Parsons said the tile repair process is a lot farther along than the RCC task.

"It's something we need to figure out a good way to repair. We have a concentrated effort on that but I don't know if we've made as much progress in that area as we have in the tile repair," Parsons said.

Meanwhile, deputy shuttle program manager Wayne Hale is continuing his task of overhauling the Mission Management Team (MMT), which the CAIB report was very critical of and was at the heart of the NASA cultural issues indicted by the investigation board.

The MMT is responsible for overseeing a shuttle mission from launch through landing and is supposed to be the independent authority outside Mission Control that decides what to do when things aren't going by the book during the flight.

Hale has been working on restoring the integrity of the MMT by holding simulations, providing training courses in the non-technical areas of sociology and even studying details such as the design of the conference room and the shape of it's table -- all with an eye toward breaking down any barriers to communication.

Monthly simulations are expected to continue, with the next one scheduled for the first week of December.

Link Posted: 11/21/2003 7:29:12 PM EDT
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.

CW
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 7:32:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.

CW



I hope you are speaking of just the space shuttle in general and not the space program.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 7:42:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ColonelKlink:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.

CW



I hope you are speaking of just the space shuttle in general and not the space program.



The space program i.e.civilian, commercial, military and intelligence, although somewhat of a charlie fox sometimes, is one of the shining examples of what we as a nation and humanity in general can achieve when we put our hearts and minds to it. I've been in all ascpects of the biz for over 25 years and wouldn't trade it for anything. You are quite right, my rant was about the Shuttle program. It was FUBAR from the beginning and continues to be.

CW
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 8:05:17 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/21/2003 8:06:27 PM EDT by Airwolf]
We need to put the Shuttle into the category of equipment hauler. We HAVE to have it finish Alpha but I think the best bet is to reconfigure it to fly automated (or with a crew of 1 or 2) for UP/DOWN missions. Let’s get Alpha finished and start getting back on track.

In the meantime put some SERIOUS resources into something better and within our grasp technologically. No “We’ll design this on the basis that we’ll have the technology we need when we need it” bullshit. I still think a capsule configuration is the way to go.

The Russians have been VERY successful using that configuration. Hell, Soyuz and Progress are DECADES old technology and they are damned near 100% reliable. I like the idea of the enlarged Apollo CSM configuration using current technology. We KNOW that works and works damned well. Build enough hardware and the price per launch is going to be far cheaper than the Shuttle and you have valid and survivable abort modes from the pad to orbit.

The chances for a failure on re-entry is extremely slight (far, far less the Shuttle) and we don’t need the whole damned Pacific Ocean and a carrier group for recovery. Apollo was VERY accurate when it came to targeted re-entry. We could recover just off KSC and have the ship and crew back at the cape in a couple of hours.

Problem is that NASA is fixated on wings==new hotness/capsules==old and busted. It’s bullshit and until O'Keefe stands up and says “This is the direction we need to move in” they’ll keep pushing for sexy spaceplanes.

Nixon forced NASA to throw away the entire infrastructure and manufacturing base that we went to the moon on. The shuttle was the only thing they could do (supposedly) cheap enough to get support on. Everyone tossed perfectly good concepts and hardware away to rush to the Shuttle. I shed a tear every time I’m at JSC and KSC seeing the last 2 Saturn V’s. Man Rated, flight ready hardware that was dismantled for exhibits. Myopic rat-bastards!

There WILL be winged spacecraft but first we need to focus on getting back on track. Once we get out there as inhabitants and not just short term visitors people will see that there are profits to be made and the rush will be on. Until then we’re sitting at the starting line pissing away peoples lives, money, resources and momentum.

I just want NASA to ACTUALLY FINISH SOMETHING. How many projects and spacecraft designs have been started, funded, tinkered with and then suddenly stopped because of a glitch, change of heart, change in direction or the political winds shifted?

Remember the X-33? Promising design. Fabricated the fuel tank using some cutting edge technology and it failed on first test. What happened? The project was abandoned shortly after that. Christ, these people need to do some research into the origins of the Space Program! We’d be watching the Russians building Martian colonies by now if we’d stopped Mercury every time something failed!

Idiots.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 8:12:37 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.

CW



+1
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 8:31:15 PM EDT
Go back to the apollo program!

I've seen a shuttle launch - but I desperately want to see an appalo launch! Is it too mach to ask for my tax dollars at work!
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 8:43:55 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Airwolf:
We need to put the Shuttle into the category of equipment hauler. We HAVE to have it finish Alpha but I think the best bet is to reconfigure it to fly automated (or with a crew of 1 or 2) for UP/DOWN missions. Let’s get Alpha finished and start getting back on track.

In the meantime put some SERIOUS resources into something better and within our grasp technologically. No “We’ll design this on the basis that we’ll have the technology we need when we need it” bullshit. I still think a capsule configuration is the way to go.

The Russians have been VERY successful using that configuration. Hell, Soyuz and Progress are DECADES old technology and they are damned near 100% reliable. I like the idea of the enlarged Apollo CSM configuration using current technology. We KNOW that works and works damned well. Build enough hardware and the price per launch is going to be far cheaper than the Shuttle and you have valid and survivable abort modes from the pad to orbit.

The chances for a failure on re-entry is extremely slight (far, far less the Shuttle) and we don’t need the whole damned Pacific Ocean and a carrier group for recovery. Apollo was VERY accurate when it came to targeted re-entry. We could recover just off KSC and have the ship and crew back at the cape in a couple of hours.

Problem is that NASA is fixated on wings==new hotness/capsules==old and busted. It’s bullshit and until O'Keefe stands up and says “This is the direction we need to move in” they’ll keep pushing for sexy spaceplanes.

Nixon forced NASA to throw away the entire infrastructure and manufacturing base that we went to the moon on. The shuttle was the only thing they could do (supposedly) cheap enough to get support on. Everyone tossed perfectly good concepts and hardware away to rush to the Shuttle. I shed a tear every time I’m at JSC and KSC seeing the last 2 Saturn V’s. Man Rated, flight ready hardware that was dismantled for exhibits. Myopic rat-bastards!

There WILL be winged spacecraft but first we need to focus on getting back on track. Once we get out there as inhabitants and not just short term visitors people will see that there are profits to be made and the rush will be on. Until then we’re sitting at the starting line pissing away peoples lives, money, resources and momentum.

I just want NASA to ACTUALLY FINISH SOMETHING. How many projects and spacecraft designs have been started, funded, tinkered with and then suddenly stopped because of a glitch, change of heart, change in direction or the political winds shifted?

Remember the X-33? Promising design. Fabricated the fuel tank using some cutting edge technology and it failed on first test. What happened? The project was abandoned shortly after that. Christ, these people need to do some research into the origins of the Space Program! We’d be watching the Russians building Martian colonies by now if we’d stopped Mercury every time something failed!

Idiots.


Amen brother!

NASA is run by a bunch of risk-averse wankers. It's better to try and fail than never to try at all. When you fail, you learn from it and try again. Don't run screaming into the night like a bunch of little girls.

The Wright brothers failed many of times before they succeeded. So did Igor Sikorsky and his helicopters. So did Goddard and his little liquid rockets. So did Von Braun and his big rockets.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 8:49:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DK-Prof:
Go back to the apollo program!

I've seen a shuttle launch - but I desperately want to see an appalo launch! Is it too mach to ask for my tax dollars at work!



I've seen a night Shuttle launch and I can still remember it (and get chills from it) today. 0400, crystal clear and summer. The color of the SRB's at night was beyond description. I could track the main engines with binoculars to 700 miles down range.

Also have seen a landing at Edwards, that was cool too.

But I would give my left nut to be in the VIP viewing stands for a Saturn V launch.
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 9:03:38 PM EDT
I see every launch...from my front door or closer, as I'm barely 20 miles from the launch site.


The shuttle program should certainly continue, and even better, we need a replacement for it. A more capable, stronger, faster, better replacement.

I am greatly disappointed that 2001 is behind us and we have none of the space vehicles shown in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. No orbital space station built on a double wheel concept with simulated gravity by centrifugal force. No Orion shuttle. (Which still to this day looks like the shuttle that will replace the shuttle that will replace the one we have now...what a great looking design!) No Aries moon shuttles, and no moon buses...and no moon bases, either. We dropped the ball.

If we'd continued to spend money like mad on the space program all along, we'd HAVE all that now. I'm SURE of it.

When I see Star Trek, I don't see science FICTION, I see science PREDICTION. But it won't happen without throwing billions of dollars into research on many fronts: Practical, engineering, theoretical, and "way out there" experimental.

I've come to believe that all the fantasy technologies in Star Trek (any version) are all possible. It's just a matter of WHEN it will be developed.

The day will come when it is not a big deal to hitch a ride on a faster-than-light starship powered by a super-efficient drive system that converts matter directly to energy. The entire galaxy will be accessible. And we will find so much life, and so much intelligent, spacefaring life, that it will shock and stun us as we realize that we are not alone and we are not the most advanced race we know anymore.

I believe that. I hope to live long enough to see it come true.

CJ
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 9:17:21 PM EDT
I got ya beat. I've seen a Saturn V night launch.:) 7 December 1972, launched at 12:33 EST and I was there. Had to lookup the exact date and time. Mostly I remember it was LAAAAAAATE!I was also very young, but it was something I will never forget. I can still remember it like it was yesterday. My dad took me because he figured even if I didn't actually remember it, I could still say I watched the last moonshot. That was back when NASA was still inspiring, although, if memory serves, that launch was in fact late by a couple of hours. Dad likes to tell people that I was plugging my ears because "It's loud!" and at the time what I didn't know was it was one of the loudest manmade noises in history.

NASA went from being awe-inspiring to being less exciting than shopping for socks in record time.




Cpt. Redleg
Link Posted: 11/21/2003 9:59:01 PM EDT
I can tell you this much, things are moving forward as if the shuttle will fly again. The CAIB was brutal and necessary, it will take time to work through it. The crews and the casts of thousands that support them continue to work as hard as they can to prepare for the eventual return to flight. It will be a proud day when it happens. I think, check that, I know the 107 crew would expect nothing less. God Bless The USA and our space program.




Link Posted: 11/22/2003 5:29:07 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.



What a joke. People in our country spend more annually on cosmetics than we spend on the space program. And waste of lives? How many astronauts have died? Contrast that with how many people have died in automobile accidents...should we outlaw driving now?
Did you actually THINK before you typed that idiotic bullshit?
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 5:54:23 AM EDT
What the hell hapened to the SSTO VentureStar program? They should be concentrating on a replacement rather than patching an obviously "totally bogus" design.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 6:04:26 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Cpt_Redleg:
I got ya beat. I've seen a Saturn V night launch.:) 7 December 1972, launched at 12:33 EST and I was there. Had to lookup the exact date and time. Mostly I remember it was LAAAAAAATE!I was also very young, but it was something I will never forget. I can still remember it like it was yesterday. My dad took me because he figured even if I didn't actually remember it, I could still say I watched the last moonshot. That was back when NASA was still inspiring, although, if memory serves, that launch was in fact late by a couple of hours. Dad likes to tell people that I was plugging my ears because "It's loud!" and at the time what I didn't know was it was one of the loudest manmade noises in history.

NASA went from being awe-inspiring to being less exciting than shopping for socks in record time.

www.nasa.gov/images/content/31033main_MM_Image_Feature_53_rs4.jpg


Cpt. Redleg



That must have been awesome.

My finacee has seen Saturn V launches and tons of shuttle launches - she actually grew up right around where cmjohnson lives, and when the shuttle was new, they'd get "shuttle days" off from school - I guess to watch to launch from the causeways or something.

I'd be willing to pay a little more in taxes if we woudl get SERIOUS again about the space program, and start planning for a trip to Mars and a permanent base on the moon.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 7:57:50 AM EDT
We are going to have to go after it....or we are finished.
There are not enough resources and energy supplies on this planet to support evryone at our standard of living. This leaves two alternatives: bring us down to their level (what most of the world wants), or secure the bounty that space offers and bring everyone else up.
How long before we walloped with another catastrophic asteroid or comet impact, anyway? If we don't start spending the money on things that are REALLY important, rather than purple dinasaurs and happy meals, we are doomed.

Nick
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:05:34 AM EDT

Originally Posted By RikWriter:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.



What a joke. People in our country spend more annually on cosmetics than we spend on the space program. And waste of lives? How many astronauts have died? Contrast that with how many people have died in automobile accidents...should we outlaw driving now?
Did you actually THINK before you typed that idiotic bullshit?



All right. You tell me what the Shuttle program has accomplished that couldn't have been done with a) un-manned launch vehicles b) disposable manned capsules ala Apollo and c) a hell of alot less money. The fact that people have died both in flight and on the ground supporting this program has nothing to do with the automobile death rate. Their deaths are tragic because they stifle the rate of progress that could otherwise be had.

BTW, I have thought about this long and hard and have experienced all of this first hand. You have a friend who died in a shuttle explosion? I did.

CW
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:20:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:

Originally Posted By RikWriter:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.



What a joke. People in our country spend more annually on cosmetics than we spend on the space program. And waste of lives? How many astronauts have died? Contrast that with how many people have died in automobile accidents...should we outlaw driving now?
Did you actually THINK before you typed that idiotic bullshit?



All right. You tell me what the Shuttle program has accomplished that couldn't have been done with a) un-manned launch vehicles b) disposable manned capsules ala Apollo and c) a hell of alot less money. The fact that people have died both in flight and on the ground supporting this program has nothing to do with the automobile death rate. Their deaths are tragic because they stifle the rate of progress that could otherwise be had.

BTW, I have thought about this long and hard and have experienced all of this first hand. You have a friend who died in a shuttle explosion? I did.

CW



Without starting a huge debate and getting into detail, the science that the crews perform in space can not be accomplished using computers. In what capacity did your friend fly? I can guarantee his/her funtion on that flight could not have been accomplished using a computer. To stop now would be an insult to those that have given their lives to help their fellow beings.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:21:59 AM EDT
I think we would have had a viable space station lots earlier if we had to rely on disposable launch vehicles actually. We would have had to build a station to do the experiments that the shuttle has done.

I really think it has been time to move on from the shuttle for a long time, but I do think we learned some valuable things from the shuttles also. I think it took our resources and thoughts off more valuable pursuits for too long though..
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:45:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By dave223:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:

Originally Posted By RikWriter:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
Hope they never launch it. It was a waste of resources since its conception and still is. A really tragic waste of money, human effort and human lives.



What a joke. People in our country spend more annually on cosmetics than we spend on the space program. And waste of lives? How many astronauts have died? Contrast that with how many people have died in automobile accidents...should we outlaw driving now?
Did you actually THINK before you typed that idiotic bullshit?



All right. You tell me what the Shuttle program has accomplished that couldn't have been done with a) un-manned launch vehicles b) disposable manned capsules ala Apollo and c) a hell of alot less money. The fact that people have died both in flight and on the ground supporting this program has nothing to do with the automobile death rate. Their deaths are tragic because they stifle the rate of progress that could otherwise be had.

BTW, I have thought about this long and hard and have experienced all of this first hand. You have a friend who died in a shuttle explosion? I did.

CW



Without starting a huge debate and getting into detail, the science that the crews perform in space can not be accomplished using computers. In what capacity did your friend fly? I can guarantee his/her funtion on that flight could not have been accomplished using a computer. To stop now would be an insult to those that have given their lives to help their fellow beings.



She was a mission specialist, and I did not say that manned space missions are wrong. iamblades post sums up my thoughts nicely, thanks.

CW
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 10:46:39 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
All right. You tell me what the Shuttle program has accomplished that couldn't have been done with a) un-manned launch vehicles b) disposable manned capsules ala Apollo and c) a hell of alot less money. The fact that people have died both in flight and on the ground supporting this program has nothing to do with the automobile death rate. Their deaths are tragic because they stifle the rate of progress that could otherwise be had.

BTW, I have thought about this long and hard and have experienced all of this first hand. You have a friend who died in a shuttle explosion? I did.

CW



My apologies...I hadn't read your follow-up post in which you explained you were only referring to the shuttle...I thought you were referring to the space program in general. My bad. I don't completely agree with you about the shuttle---it was a political compromise, yes, but that's the system we're forced to work under---but I can respect your viewpoint about it.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 11:18:09 AM EDT

Originally Posted By cmjohnson:
I see every launch...from my front door or closer, as I'm barely 20 miles from the launch site.


The shuttle program should certainly continue, and even better, we need a replacement for it. A more capable, stronger, faster, better replacement.

I am greatly disappointed that 2001 is behind us and we have none of the space vehicles shown in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey. No orbital space station built on a double wheel concept with simulated gravity by centrifugal force. No Orion shuttle. (Which still to this day looks like the shuttle that will replace the shuttle that will replace the one we have now...what a great looking design!) No Aries moon shuttles, and no moon buses...and no moon bases, either. We dropped the ball.

If we'd continued to spend money like mad on the space program all along, we'd HAVE all that now. I'm SURE of it.

When I see Star Trek, I don't see science FICTION, I see science PREDICTION. But it won't happen without throwing billions of dollars into research on many fronts: Practical, engineering, theoretical, and "way out there" experimental.

I've come to believe that all the fantasy technologies in Star Trek (any version) are all possible. It's just a matter of WHEN it will be developed.

The day will come when it is not a big deal to hitch a ride on a faster-than-light starship powered by a super-efficient drive system that converts matter directly to energy. The entire galaxy will be accessible. And we will find so much life, and so much intelligent, spacefaring life, that it will shock and stun us as we realize that we are not alone and we are not the most advanced race we know anymore.

I believe that. I hope to live long enough to see it come true.

CJ



Centrifugal force isnt a force.
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 11:21:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By RikWriter:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
All right. You tell me what the Shuttle program has accomplished that couldn't have been done with a) un-manned launch vehicles b) disposable manned capsules ala Apollo and c) a hell of alot less money. The fact that people have died both in flight and on the ground supporting this program has nothing to do with the automobile death rate. Their deaths are tragic because they stifle the rate of progress that could otherwise be had.

BTW, I have thought about this long and hard and have experienced all of this first hand. You have a friend who died in a shuttle explosion? I did.

CW



My apologies...I hadn't read your follow-up post in which you explained you were only referring to the shuttle...I thought you were referring to the space program in general. My bad. I don't completely agree with you about the shuttle---it was a political compromise, yes, but that's the system we're forced to work under---but I can respect your viewpoint about it.





Seriously, thanks for the reply. as you can gather, space has been my career and the shuttle program was one of my hot buttons. I've had stuff fly on the shuttle,

lmms.external.lmco.com/photos/solar_arrays/solar_array_flight_exp/safe_solar_wing_lo.jpg

had to deal with astronaut safety, worked on systems that were forced to fly on the shuttle that had to be re-designed for flight on a ULV because of the Challenger explosion, watched the money drain away from worthy projects to feed horrendous overruns on the space station to give the shuttle a reason for existence, and generally watch NASA go from a "can-do" organization to a CYA behemoth. The sad thing is that I was a little late in being born to be part of the beginning (rocketry, manned space, lunar landings, near earth/lunar/martian/venusian exploration) but I worked with the guys that did. They were the ones that I have looked up to during my career.

CW
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 12:57:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
and generally watch NASA go from a "can-do" organization to a CYA behemoth.



This, my friend, is right in the bulls eye. My roots are in the training aspect of the program. I am a die hard fan of the space shuttle, the crews, and the teams of people that support them. I have never ever met people more dedicated in any other industry. Down in the training trenches we work with what they give us and do our level best to put up with and cut through the budget constraints and red tape. Nothing I can do at my level to change it, so I/we keep moving forward. As long as the crews show up willing to train and wanting to fly, we will be there to make it happen. Would like to buy you a few beers if you ever make it to Houston. Ever been to JSC?
Link Posted: 11/22/2003 2:18:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By dave223:

Originally Posted By Cold_Warrior:
and generally watch NASA go from a "can-do" organization to a CYA behemoth.



This, my friend, is right in the bulls eye. My roots are in the training aspect of the program. I am a die hard fan of the space shuttle, the crews, and the teams of people that support them. I have never ever met people more dedicated in any other industry. Down in the training trenches we work with what they give us and do our level best to put up with and cut through the budget constraints and red tape. Nothing I can do at my level to change it, so I/we keep moving forward. As long as the crews show up willing to train and wanting to fly, we will be there to make it happen. Would like to buy you a few beers if you ever make it to Houston. Ever been to JSC?



More times than I care to count. Used to go to the Crazy Cajun with Max Faget and my management. Will take you up on the beer offer if I get out that way. GF works for Oxy Pete and goes there often.

Hang in there, things are changing.

CW

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