NASA Holding Firm On Launch Date
The space shuttle Discovery has one day remaining in its countdown to lift off, the first shuttle flight in over two years.
Discovery’s launch will have a greater than normal media interest in its Wednesday launch. If weather patterns allow for lift off as expected, a number of cameras will point skyward as thousands of pounds of fuel blast the shuttle into orbit.
NASA has embraced the web in the days leading up to the launch. The space agency hosted a webcast question and answer session with some of its mission experts, and will provide online coverage of the launch via NASA TV.
Meanwhile, shuttle managers made final preparations to load the liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen components of the Power Reactant Storage Distribution system. These components provide electrical power to the orbiting shuttle through fuel cell technology.
Florida weather forecasts show a 30 percent chance of rain for the launch day, with an expected temperature of 86 degrees and humidity of 70 percent. Discovery’s crew spent part of Monday reviewing the upcoming mission, Pilot Jim Kelly and Mission Commander undertook flying some test landing approaches in the early morning hours.
Around noon today, NASA will send its two booster rocket retrieval ships out to sea. They will be positioned to pickup the smaller rockets after they splashdown in the ocean after they help Discovery’s launch.
David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.