Author Topic: NASA managers approve STS-135 mission planning for June 28, 2011 launch  (Read 122832 times)

Offline wjbarnett

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I'll bet they won't announce until/unless Congress (and the Pres) authorize 135 in the FY2011 NASA budget bill. Though perhaps the targeted '335 crew' will be trained w/o announcement
« Last Edit: 09/12/2010 03:28 PM by wjbarnett »
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Offline psloss

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I'll bet they won't announce until/unless Congress (and the Pres) authorize 135 in the FY2011 NASA budget bill. Though perhaps the targeted '335 crew' will be trained w/o announcement
We'll see; if the 335 crew is named, it's probably going to go public one way or another.  As Bill Harwood wrote, the 335 crew will fly either mission designation.  And as the article that is the topic of this thread details, the program recently aligned the content and launch dates such that training can start while waiting for a decision.


Offline Space Pete

Holds relevance to STS-135:

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2010/09/sts-134-hardware-planning-aligning-endeavours-mission/

Nice article, Chris!

Quote
In such a scenario, all the unused hardware – which has already been paid for – will be wasted and likely sent to exhibitions, or decommissioned and destroyed – if it can’t find a role in a notional SD HLV program.

Sounds like a subtle hint to somebody (hope they're reading)! ;)
Electronic Engineer by day, NASASpaceflight's ISS Editor by night | Read my NASASpaceflight articles here

Offline Orbiter

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Will NASA announce the STS 335/135 crew this coming week?

It should be named tomorrow, as indicated from the August 20th article on STS-135.
Quote
According to the meeting notes, crew selection will take place on September 14, with training – or crew loading – to begin on September 27. The June 28, 2011 launch date moves the mission four days to the right of previous evaluations.

Orbiter
« Last Edit: 09/13/2010 03:27 PM by Orbiter »
Attended space missions: STS-114, STS-124, STS-128, STS-135, Atlas V "Curiosity", Delta IV Heavy NROL-15, Atlas V MUOS-2, Delta IV Heavy NROL-37, SpaceX CRS-9, SpaceX JCSAT-16, Atlas V GOES-R, SpaceX SES-11.

Offline Chris Bergin

Holds relevance to STS-135:

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2010/09/sts-134-hardware-planning-aligning-endeavours-mission/

Nice article, Chris!

Quote
In such a scenario, all the unused hardware – which has already been paid for – will be wasted and likely sent to exhibitions, or decommissioned and destroyed – if it can’t find a role in a notional SD HLV program.

Sounds like a subtle hint to somebody (hope they're reading)! ;)

Thanks :)

Offline Space Pete

Will NASA announce the STS 335/135 crew this coming week?

It should be named tomorrow, as indicated from the August 20th article on STS-135.

Oh, I'd forgotten about that! Now you've got me all excited (although we probably won't get to hear about it for a week or so yet).
Electronic Engineer by day, NASASpaceflight's ISS Editor by night | Read my NASASpaceflight articles here

Offline Chris Bergin

Not looking all that likely NASA's going to issue a press release on the STS-335/135 names today, as it's getting a bit late in the day for such a release. I don't want to run ahead of any public announcement (crew selections are rightly protected) so let's see if NASA will announce a crew this week and go from there.

For the record I don't have a full crew on an official memo or something, but we're confident we know who the commander and pilot are. And to be honest, if we did have the full crew, I'd seek a lot of permissions to run names. Reason being, it'd be a nightmare scenario for a crewmember's family to read it on a website before being told themselves.

Offline Chris Bergin

They've released it! :)

RELEASE: 10-222

NASA ASSIGNS CREW FOR FINAL LAUNCH ON NEED SHUTTLE MISSION

WASHINGTON -- NASA announced the four astronauts who will make up the
crew of STS-335, the rescue mission that would fly only if needed to
bring home the members of space shuttle Endeavour's STS-134 mission,
currently the final scheduled shuttle flight.

Chris Ferguson, a retired U.S. Navy captain and veteran of two
previous shuttle missions, would command the flight. Astronaut and
U.S. Marine Col. Doug Hurley would serve as pilot, and astronauts
Sandy Magnus and retired U.S. Air Force Col. Rex Walheim would be the
mission specialists.

Based on recommendations made after the loss of space shuttle Columbia
in February 2003, NASA has trained a launch on need crew to be ready
to fly in the event of irreparable damage to a shuttle while in
orbit. Typically, the next crew to fly serves as the rescue crew for
the current mission. The STS-335 crew will prepare for a potential
rescue mission and preserve flexibility if another shuttle flight is
added to the launch manifest.

"These astronauts will begin training immediately as a rescue crew as
well as in the baseline requirements that would be needed to fly an
additional shuttle flight," said Bill Gerstenmaier, associate
administrator for NASA's Space Operations Mission Directorate in
Washington. "The normal training template for a shuttle crew is about
one year prior to launch, so we need to begin training now in order
to maintain the flexibility of flying a rescue mission if needed, or
alter course and fly an additional shuttle mission if that decision
is made."

If required, the STS-335 rescue mission would launch on shuttle
Atlantis in June 2011 to bring home the STS-134 crew from the
International Space Station. STS-134 currently is scheduled to lift
off on Feb. 26, 2011, from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. If
converted to an additional shuttle flight, STS-335 would be
redesignated STS-135 and targeted to launch in June 2011.

Ferguson, who was born in Philadelphia, flew on two prior shuttle
missions, STS-115 in 2006 and STS-126 in 2008. Hurley, who was born
in Endicott, N.Y., but considers Apalachin, N.Y., his hometown,
served as the pilot on STS-127 in 2009. Magnus, of Belleville, Ill.,
flew on STS-112 in 2002 and launched to the space station in 2008 on
STS-126, where she served four and a half months as a flight engineer
and science officer on Expedition 18 before returning to Earth on
STS-119 in 2009. Walheim was born in Redwood City, Calif., and
considers San Carlos, Calif., his hometown. He flew on STS-110 in
2002 and STS-122 in 2008.

Offline steveS

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Good to see a female astronaut selected for the final shuttle mission and also for Atlantis after two consecutive all male crews (STS-129 and STS-132)

Offline nathan.moeller

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Good to see a female astronaut selected for the final shuttle mission and also for Atlantis after two consecutive all male crews (STS-129 and STS-132)

Also notable is the fact that all of these astronauts, with the exception of Doug Hurley, made their first flights on Atlantis and in consecutive flights of the orbiter.

STS-110 Atlantis - Rex Walheim as MS
STS-112 Atlantis - Sandra Magnus as MS
STS-115 Atlantis - Chris Ferguson as PLT

This is interesting as well - all three pilot-heavy branches of the military (USAF, USN and USMC) are represented on this flight.

Ferguson - USN
Walheim - USAF
Hurley - USMC

Obviously these had no bearing whatsoever on their selection, but it's cool to see!
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Offline steveS

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Also notable is the fact that all of these astronauts, with the exception of Doug Hurley, made their first flights on Atlantis and in consecutive flights of the orbiter.

STS-110 Atlantis - Rex Walheim as MS
STS-112 Atlantis - Sandra Magnus as MS
STS-115 Atlantis - Chris Ferguson as PLT

This is interesting as well - all three pilot-heavy branches of the military (USAF, USN and USMC) are represented on this flight.

Ferguson - USN
Walheim - USAF
Hurley - USMC

Obviously these had no bearing whatsoever on their selection, but it's cool to see!

Indeed the crew seems to have ample experience with Atlantis :). Ferguson and Magnus have flown with the STS-126 (a MPLM mission) while Walheim has EVA experience. Magnus has also stayed at ISS for a long duration. Seems like a very good combination and a selection :)

Offline Sesquipedalian

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Chris Ferguson, a retired U.S. Navy captain and veteran of two
previous shuttle missions, would command the flight.

Congress may have something to say about this.  Based on the Senate bill, it seems they want Charlie Bolden himself to command the flight.

Quote
(e) SPACE SHUTTLE MISSION TO ISS.—
16 (1) SPACE SHUTTLE MISSION.—The Adminis-
17 trator shall fly the Launch-On-Need Shuttle mission
18 currently designated in the Shuttle Flight Manifest
19 dated February 28, 2010, to the ISS in fiscal year
20 2011, but no earlier than June 1, 2011, unless re
21 quired earlier by an operations contingency, and
22 pending the results of the assessment required by
23 paragraph (2) and the determination under para
24 graph (3)(A).

I wonder if the Supreme Court has ever established how literally you're supposed to read these bills. :P


Offline steveS

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Lets say STS-135 does not fly. In that case will NASA bring back STS-335 to say April or still it will be in June?. If some of the current funding expires on March, then how will NASA plan to cover the costs of STS-335?

Offline psloss

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Mark Carreau's article in Aviation Week includes comments from Bill Gerstenmaier on when a decision would need to be made:

Link

Offline steveS

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Will part of the Discovery, Endeavour and Atlantis teams be joined together for the processing of STS-135 if congress approves?. Since after STS-133 and 134, Discovery and Endeavour wont be going through mission preparations (although there will be de-servicing actives needed to be done)

Offline Chris Bergin

In case it remains STS-335:
MAF speak of their pride in returning ET-122 to the Shuttle manifest - by Philip Sloss.

http://www.nasaspaceflight.com/2010/09/maf-pride-returning-et-122-shuttle-manifest/

Offline brettreds2k

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When is it expected to get a final announcement on if STS-135 will fly or not?
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Offline renclod

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NASA Engineering and Safety Center Technical Assessment Report:

Assessment of NASA’s Approach to STS-135 with Soyuz Crew Rescue
September 13, 2010

http://www.nasa.gov/pdf/482702main_NESC-RP-10-00640%20Assessment%20of%20the%20%20SSP%20Approach%20to%20STS-135%20with%20Soyuz%20Crew%20Rescue%20(9-13-10%20NRB)%20FINAL%20REPORT.pdf


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