Author Topic: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus  (Read 56844 times)

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Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« on: 08/15/2012 07:03 PM »
“In human affairs there is no snug harbor, no rest short of the grave. We are forever setting forth afresh across new and stormy seas, or into outer space.”

Samuel Eliot Morison, 1971

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #1 on: 08/15/2012 07:04 PM »

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #2 on: 08/15/2012 07:07 PM »
The first “interplanetary” shuttle crew

Originally they had set their target on another planet in our solar system. David Walker, Ronald Grabe and Norman Thagard comprised the pre-Challenger STS 61-G crew who would have flown the mission to deploy the Galileo Jupiter probe from Atlantis on May 20, 1986 – along with James van Hoften, who retired from NASA after the Challenger accident. With Magellan’s journey to Venus they now will gain another chance to extend the shuttle’s reach to the planets – although the four-men-one-woman crew of STS-30 of course will stay in low Earth orbit.

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #3 on: 08/15/2012 07:10 PM »
“We try to share the load as much as we can,” Mission Commander David Walker says of his crew. While that is the case, they each have very defined roles. Of his own role, Walker says, “The commander obviously is in charge and does some of the flying. My pilot, Ron Grabe, handles a lot of the systems, backs me up on the flying and is there as my second in command.”

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #4 on: 08/15/2012 07:12 PM »
Captain USN David M. Walker was born May 20, 1944 in Columbus, Georgia, but considers Eustis, Florida, his hometown. As naval aviator and test pilot, flying F-4 Phantoms and F-14 Tomcats, he has logged more than 4,700 hours flying time. His involvement with the Navy included two combat cruises in Southeast Asia aboard the carriers USS Enterprise and USS America and two later deployments to the Mediterranean Sea, again aboard USS America. Selected by NASA in January 1978, Dave Walker became an astronaut in August 1979. His NASA assignments included astronaut office safety officer, deputy chief of aircraft operations, STS-1 chase pilot, software verification at the Shuttle Avionics Integration Laboratory, mission support group leader for STS-5 and STS-6, assistant to the director of flight crew operations and leader of the astronaut support crew at Kennedy Space Center. Walker piloted Discovery during mission 51-A in 1984, the second flight of OV-103 and the first space salvage mission in history, bringing the Palapa B-2 and Westar VI satellites back to Earth. He has logged 192 hours in space. Walker worked in the astronaut office as chief of Space Station design and development prior to resuming training duties for STS-30.

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #5 on: 08/15/2012 07:14 PM »
Atlantis’ pilot for mission STS-30, Colonel USAF Ronald J. Grabe, was born June 13, 1945, in New York City and after earning a BS in Engineering Science from the USAF Academy he studied Aeronautics at the Technische Hochschule, Darmstadt, West Germany in 1967. Ron Grabe has logged more than 4,000 hours flying time. As F-100 and F-111 fighter pilot he flew 200 combat missions over Vietnam and later attended the Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards. From 1976 to 1979 Grabe served as an exchange test pilot with the Royal Air Force at Boscombe Down, United Kingdom, where he was chief project pilot for the RAF Harrier and Royal Navy Sea Harrier. In 1980 he was a test pilot instructor at Edwards AFB when being advised of his selection by NASA. He became an astronaut in August 1981 and served as chief verification pilot for the STS-3 and STS-4 entry guidance, navigation and control simulation testing. He later became deputy manager for operations integration at the Space Shuttle operations office. While piloting the maiden voyage of Atlantis during the secret DOD mission 51-J in 1985 Grabe has logged 98 hours in space.

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #6 on: 08/15/2012 07:15 PM »

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #7 on: 08/15/2012 07:16 PM »
As Mission Specialist 1 Major USAF Mark C. Lee is primarily responsible for the deployment of Magellan. Lee was born August 14, 1952, in Viroqua, Wisconsin. Lee graduated from the USAF Academy in 1974 with  a BS degree in Civil Engineering, then earned a MS degree in Mechanical Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1980. While at MIT, he specialized in graphite/epoxy advanced composite material studies. Following pilot training at Laughlin Air Force base, Texas, and F-4 upgrade at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, he spent more than two years at Okinawa Air Base, Japan, in the 25th Tactical Fighter Squadron flying F-4s. Mark Lee was assigned to Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts, in 1980 and served as operational support manager in the AWACS program office. In 1982 returned to flying at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, and has logged 2,000 in the air by now. Selected as an astronaut candidate in May 1984, Mark Lee’s duties within the astronaut office included work on EVA techniques and the Inertial Upper Stage (IUS). He served as support crewman for mission STS 51-I in 1985. STS-30 will be Lee’s first journey to space.

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #8 on: 08/15/2012 07:18 PM »
M.D. Norman E. Thagard was born July 3, 1943 in Marianna, Florida, but considers Jacksonville, Florida, his hometown. During mission STS-30 he will serve as flight engineer. Designated MS2, he will sit in the seat at the shoulders of the Commander and Pilot during launch and landing, monitoring critical events during those phases. He will also act as the prime EVA astronaut, making any spacewalk – together with Mark Lee – that may be needed in an emergency situation. Thagard received both BS and MS degrees in Engineering Science from Florida State University before earning a doctor of medicine degree from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in 1977. He entered active duty with the USMC Reserve in 1966, earned the rank of Captain in 1967 and was designated a naval aviator in 1968. He flew 163 combat missions in Vietnam while being assigned to VMFA-115 from January 1969 to 1970. After leaving the military, Thagard resumed his academic studies in 1971, pursuing additional studies in electrical engineering and a degree in medicine. As licensed pilot he has logged over 2,200 hours flying time. Thagard became an astronaut in August 1979 and served as Mission Specialist on Challenger missions STS-7 and 51-B, logging a total of 315 hours in space.

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #9 on: 08/15/2012 07:19 PM »
The third Mission Specialist, Ph.D. Mary L. Cleave, is responsible for the orchestration of all secondary payloads and photography aboard Atlantis. Her flight marks another first – the flight of the first woman astronaut since Challenger. “To tell you the truth, I’m a little disappointed that anyone noticed,” Cleave says. “We’ve flown a lot of women in the program, and I think they’re flying as the turn comes.” Her technical assignments at NASA have included work at the SAIL. She was CapCom on five shuttle flights – STS-5 through 41-B – and has also assisted with the development of the malfunctions procedures book and crew equipment designs. Mary Cleave served as Mission Specialist aboard Atlantis STS 61-B in 1985, logging 165 hours in Earth orbit. (“Meet the Magellan handlers,” Countdown, May 1989 – edited)

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #10 on: 08/15/2012 07:24 PM »
Let’s talk to Mary Cleave…

As mentioned above – although she didn’t like the special attention – Mary Cleave became the first female astronaut of the post-Challenger era, and also the third U.S. woman to embark on a second trip to Earth orbit. In 1983, well before her first flight aboard Atlantis, she gave an interesting interview about her life as a member of the shuttle program and women in space in general to Nigel Macknight, editor and publisher of the British “Spaceflight News” magazine. So, after a short introduction by Nigel Macknight, let’s talk to Mary Cleave…

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #11 on: 08/15/2012 07:25 PM »
Doctor Mary Cleave is one of the new breed of astronauts that has sprung forth as a result of the Space Shuttle program. If you talk to the “grand old man” among the NASA astronauts, John Young, he’ll tell you that “Supermen” are a vanishing breed in the astronaut corps and that “ordinary people are going into space in the future.” Neither Mary Cleave, nor any of the other astronauts, could be described as “ordinary,” but when you meet her, you realize what Young is trying to say.

The first thing that strikes you is her pint-sized stature – a shock to anyone accustomed to the notion that astronauts had to be big and burly – for she’s just five feet two inches tall and weighs only 98 pounds. There’s an endearing sparkle in her green eyes, and she wears her long brown hair in a ponytail. We talk for a while before I turn the tape recorder on. Apparently, she enjoys cross-country and downhill skiing, sailing, hiking and camping, and her ancestors lived in Cornwall, England. She’s modest, but far from shy and retiring, and seems genuinely flattered that I’ve chosen to interview her when “there are so many astronauts around.” She laughs a lot. An infectious laugh you wouldn’t associate with an astronaut. Maybe John Young was right after all.

Mary Cleave’s academic background provides some pointers to hat these new breed mission specialists are made of. She was born February 5, 1947, in Southampton, New York, and graduated from Great Neck North High School in 1965. In 1969 she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences from Colorado State University, and a Master of Science degree in Microbial Ecology and a doctorate in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Utah State University in 1975 and 1979 respectively. Her work in the Ecology Center and the Utah Water Research laboratory at Utah State from September 1971 to June 1980 led to the publication of numerous scientific papers.

By all accounts, Cleave threw herself into a wide diversity of studies with unbridled enthusiasm. The studies included research into algae, the prediction of minimum river flow necessary to maintain certain species of game fish, and the effect of increased salinity and oil shale leachates on freshwater phytoplankton productivity, as well as the development of a complex computer program for current and future processing of data from surface impoundments in Utah.

Mary Cleave was selected as an astronaut candidate by NASA in May 1980, and in August 1981 she completed a one-year training and evaluation period that made her eligible for assignment as a mission specialist on future Space Shuttle flights. Thankfully, the rigors of NASA’s selection process did nothing to dampen her occasionally ribald sense of humor. In reference to her unsung work in the vital field of of waste management, a neatly framed statement on her office wall proclaims, “It may be crap to you, but it’s bread and butter to me!”

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #12 on: 08/15/2012 07:27 PM »
Macknight: How did it first occur to you that you wanted to be an astronaut? Was it a clear-cut decision, or did you somehow drift into it?

Cleave: It was a very clear decision. I was working as a research engineer, and one of my colleagues was flipping through one of the NASA brochures giving details of their requirements for the 1978 intake of astronauts. He suddenly said, “You’re the only engineer in this place crazy enough to wanna do something like that.” And he was right. So I went down to the local post office with a girlfriend of mine and picked up a Standard 1171 form; it was a straight civil service application for me, as opposed to the military guys. We sat and filled it out that night and sent it in. It was funny. I had never even considered anything like that before.

Macknight: You say it was funny, but once you sat down to fill out that form, were you still laughing then?

Cleave: I took it seriously once I found out I wasn’t too short! Because it was the first time that any job in aviation had opened up to me where I wasn’t considered too small.

Macknight: So you’d wanted to get into aviation before that time?

Cleave: Yeah. I had a pilot’s license for a year before I had a driver’s license. I started flying when I was fourteen, but I was raised as a standard girl, so when I wanted to go into aviation, I didn’t really consider being a pilot – I was too short in the first place and there weren’t women pilots then. So I wanted to be an airline stewardess, but I was too short. (Laughing) I was really lucky!

Macknight: So what was the extent of your experience up to that time? What types of aircraft did you fly in those early days?

Cleave: Cessnas and Helio Couriers. That’s all. Never worked on anything else. In fact, my big plan was – I’d just gotten out of graduate school and I’d got money ahead – I was in the mountains and I wanted to join the local glider club.

Macknight: Do you feel any kind of external pressure to “defeminize” yourself in order to function successfully as an astronaut?

Cleave: No. You see, I’ve been working in what would be classified as a male field for so long that I don’t think I’m affected in that way anymore. In fact, if anything, I feel that way less in this job because there are other females involved, whereas in previous jobs there weren’t any. I don’t know what’s going to happen when we go into space with our long hair, (Laughing) if you’ve ever thought about that. But that’s an issue they haven’t mentioned yet.

Macknight: Which aspect of your work on the Space Shuttle program stands out as being the most stimulating at the moment?

Cleave: For enjoyment of what I’m doing, the proficiency flying we do is the best. The flying part of the training is definitely the best part of it as far as I’m concerned. The worst part is the meetings. We have to go to quite a few meetings. I never was a great meetings person anyway – I wasn’t very good at them when I was working as a research engineer either. I don’t like to sit still for long, so the flying is the best part.

Macknight: What types do you fly?

Cleave: We have fifteen hours a month in T-38s, proficiency flying. And then there’s the KC-135, when you’re testing anything that needs to be tested in zero-gravity. We don’t actually fly the KC-135s, of course. We fly in them and they do the parabolic trajectory which creates temporary weightlessness.

Macknight: Do you fly solo in the T-38s?

Cleave: No, not the mission specialists. NASA went for two different types of astronauts, as you know – pilots and mission specialists. They stopped sending everybody to flight school, so now all the guys who go into the program who have military flying experience are checked out in T-38s. We’re back-seaters; but because it’s a training aircraft we have a control stick in the back.

Macknight: The idea of the T-38 flying is to familiarize you with high-performance aircraft before you plunge into spaceflight?

Cleave: Right. For example, the G training we get in T-38s is real important. We don’t fly in anti-G suits so that we can get used to withstanding it. The maximum Gs you can pull in a T-38 is 6, so we go out and do aerobatics and stuff. When I first started flying in jets I’d start getting blurred vision at about 3 1/2 Gs, and now I can grunt back and pull 6Gs without a G-suit no trouble and still read gauges and function properly. I got to that level within the first year.

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #13 on: 08/15/2012 07:30 PM »
Macknight: So how do you feel now about the prospect of blasting off from KSC in a real, live Space Shuttle? I’d be terrified!

Cleave: Oh, I can’t wait! When they came back from STS-2, a couple of guys got together with the acoustic engineers and they put together a launch film taken out of Dick Truly’s window. They put the sound of it at the level in decibels that it was supposed to be inside the cockpit – because they’d measured it – and put it through a big speaker. We have a meeting every Monday morning when we all get together and they played this thing out and looked around the room. Everybody was just grinning from ear to ear! It was really funny. Nobody was scared.

Macknight: Was it really loud inside the cockpit?

Cleave: Relatively loud, yeah. But you’re wearing a helmet of course. It’s a bit like in a jet aircraft – they’re quite loud, too.

Macknight: So you’re not worried about flying aboard the shuttle, even though you won’t have ejection seats?

Cleave: If anything, I think that people like me will feel less uncomfortable about flying without an ejection seat than the normal guys, because I flew most of my life in light aircraft and I never even had a parachute. The military guys, on the other hand, have always had the option of using an ejection seat – except for the helicopter pilots.

Macknight: At this point in time (1983), you have no idea of when you’ll be flying in the Space Shuttle. Why does NASA only name crews at twelve months, or so, notice?

 Cleave: I don’t exactly know why they do it, but part of it is probably because, if they name you to a crew – and you know you only have a certain amount of time to prepare yourself before you go into this really intensive training program – then you’re under a heck of a lot of pressure. As it is now, we train a little bit – single systems trainers and stuff – but mainly we’re employed as research engineers. When you get named to a crew you go into this real high-intensity training period and you just couldn’t keep it up for much more than a year.

Macknight: NASA has been making a big point about the suitability of their new EVA spacesuits for women astronauts as well as men. Is the unisex suit as comfortable for you women as it’s claimed to be?

Cleave: I’ve been in it a lot – because I’m the smallest guy, I get to size a lot of stuff – and it’s fine. For me, unfortunately, there won’t be that much of an adjustment in the chest measurement! The only drawback to the new suit is that women won’t be fitted with the urine collection devices. However, we have flown tests on these big diapers – I get to do that, too, because I’m a sanitary engineer – and that seems to work okay. You’re just going to have to pace your fluid intake, etc. I’m going to go on a low-residue diet before I go (Laughing). But that’s your choice, see. You don’t have to do things like that anymore. It used to be you had to go on a low-residue diet, but now it’s getting to the point where you don’t have to. You can please yourself.

Macknight: Do you intend to remain an astronaut for a long time, or do you see it as a means to some other end?

Cleave: I’d like to go further than the shuttle. If I get to do exactly what I want to do, the space station proposal would get funded and in about ten or fifteen years I’d be doing a start-up procedure on a space station and getting it moving. Because what I’m really interested in is life-support on space stations. That’s what I’d like to work on.

Macknight: So as long NASA is happy with you, you’d like to stay fully involved for as long as possible?

Cleave: Yeah, I think they make it pretty clear that they’re investing a lot in your training, although you don’t have to stay – like I signed a contract for five years back in 1980. In your first year you don’t have to sign a contract, so you can decide whether you want to do this or not – it’s a sort of mutual thing. And then you go ahead and commit for five years. Most of the people I know are sticking around. If you look at what’s been happening after the first few shuttle flights, the older guys are sticking around. There’s a real commitment to the program and getting it going. I think everybody here really believes in what they’re doing, and the potential of it.

But if you want to know what I’d really like to be doing in about twenty years, I’d like to be going to Mars! But that’s too far-fetched. Actually, there’s been some hypotheses that we’d be better off sending older people to Mars, because you’re gonna get quite a bit of radiation exposure.

Macknight: And why would that make it more likely than older people be sent?

Cleave: Well, you’re not going to blow your… your ability to have children. You can only have a certain amount of radiation exposure in a lifetime before you start getting complications. So let’s say that if in the future they’re going to be doing a lot of extra-vehicular work out in geosynchronous orbit – where you’re up in a high-radiation belt – theoretically, what would limit your career as an astronaut would be the amount of radiation exposure you’ve had. You’re only allowed to get x number of rads in a lifetime. It’s just like people who work in nuclear power plants. They have to watch how much exposure they get. So (Laughing), you’d send older people because they wouldn’t have to worry about it.

Macknight: What is it that particularly attracts you to Mars?

Cleave: That’s the one that has water on it. I’m interested in life-support, and if you have water you can support life.

Macknight: Your interest in life-support comes from the fact that, for all other qualifications, you’re a biologist at heart?

Cleave: I’m a biologist, yes. I started as a biologist but I got my PhD in civil engineering, so I’m both.

Macknight: They’re somewhat diverse interests. Why the sudden shift of emphasis?

Cleave: It isn’t really a sudden shift, because I was involved in civil sanitary engineering. I got into that because I was studying algae and water pollution. I was working in a research lab as an algae specialist, and the guys I was working with convinced me that if I really wanted to have an impact on the environment, I should go to engineering school – I shouldn’t be a biologist. And they were right. So I went to engineering school.

Macknight: So, you see your involvement in the Space Shuttle program as being a facet of your concern for the environment?

Cleave: Definitely. The Earth is just a fragile little object contained in a nice protective envelop, and if you look at pollution control – particularly air pollution and water pollution – you can take x amount of impurities out and it’s economically feasible. But you really get to a point of diminishing returns when you take the last little piece of junk out of waste water or air – it’s just not economically feasible. So for me the answer is to get dirty industry out of the envelope, because that way you don’t have to worry about it anymore. That’s working way, way down the line, but that’s how I feel about my work here – to where it’s leading.

Macknight: There are a lot of high ideals behind the Space Shuttle program. A lot of genuinely humanitarian causes are being pursued. But don’t you feel that, to some extent, these potential benefits for mankind as a whole are going to be negated by the heavy involvement of the Department of Defense and the resulting development of space for military purposes? We’ve all heard the stories about the possibility of laser weapons being put into orbit, and other equally frightening prospects.

Cleave: When I was working at the water lab as a research engineer, I worked on a lot of DOD projects, and I don’t know of any university – people that are heavy-duty into research – that aren’t doing DoD projects for one type or another. For me, I grew up on ‘em. I don’t see ‘em as being a big aggressive thing. I see it as being defensive rather than aggressive. There are any number of projects you can work on. In Utah State University we were working on weather modification. If someone wants to attack you it’s the best way to keep planes out or anything else. Make it rain like hell! Or make it snow. Make the weather miserable. Everybody likes to fight in good weather, right? (Laughing) That’s how I see it.

But a lot of people could take it the other way. A lot of people’s reaction to things depend on their basic mental state. I know that when I was at college there were a lot of people who always needed something to complain about. Or they always needed something to combat.  They were the aggressors. That’s the funny part of a lot of people that I see that are picketing for peace and stuff like that – they basically have very aggressive personalities and they need something to fight all the time. It’s weird. But I’m more involved in environmental issues.

Macknight: So, as someone dedicated to developing the humanitarian aspects of the Space Shuttle program, you don’t see the military involvement as being detrimental?

Cleave: Let me give you an analogy. I believe in the multiple use of recreational land. I think that the multiple-use concept is the only way that you get viable use of anything. So you have to learn to share. And you’re not going to particularly like certain aspects of any organization you’re sharing with. But that’s alright. There are a lot of people with a lot of different beliefs, and nobody says you’re right – or I’m right. (Laughing) I’m sort of apolitical, areligious, awhatever – you know? Much to my mother’s dismay.

Macknight: Have you got any theories on why it’s taken America so much longer to put a woman into space after the Soviets did it with Valentina Tereshkova back in 1963? Yet, now you’re doing it with a vengeance – no less than eight woman astronauts are assigned to the shuttle program (1983).

Cleave: Yeah, well, now we’ve got affirmative action, too. Way back then there was no push to do anything for women… let’s say professionally. Now it’s a social/political force. It sort of went hand-in-hand with equal opportunity and the whole thing. I think you’re seeing a little shift in society here, and I know I really felt the difference. Like I said, when I was a little kid I wanted to be an airline stewardess. And what did I end up being? I mean it’s nuts! It’s a product of how society here is changing.

The only thing I knew about Valentina Tereshkova’s flight is… have you ever read Jim Oberg’s book “Red Star in Orbit?” He works here, but he works for McDonnell Douglas, and his hobby is Russian space studies. You should get a hold of that book. It’s really amazing, because in reading his book you get the feeling that Khrushchev didn’t really want to have a woman fly in space, so he chose four factory workers and put them into training. She, Tereshkova, made one flight and was married to the person she went to space with. Khrushchev gave the bride away at the wedding, and she never went to space again. So she was taken off a factory floor, trained for six month and put into space! Jim said that on reentry she lost it, and that’s how the Russians came through and said that women are unfit for spaceflight. They did say that, and that’s why they didn’t fly any more women until last year (1982).

Macknight: When you say “she lost it on reentry” do you mean emotionally?

Cleave: Right, and physically. She was sick to her stomach and started screaming. That’s just what Jim said – it’s all from unofficial sources, obviously. My thoughts on that are this: if it wasn’t just something Khrushchev had decided to do just to represent women in the proletariat, kinda thing, then why didn’t he pick an engineer or someone who was properly qualified to go through with it? Why a factory worker? Why train her for just six months, if he didn’t want to doom it to failure from the very beginning? – Whereas here at NASA I can’t really see any difference between the women mission specialists and the men mission specialists. They go ahead and train us the same.

Macknight: You feel it’s a genuine attempt to do it?

Cleave: Oh, yes. Or else I wouldn’t have taken the job. A lot of us had really heavy-duty goin’ careers to start with and we would not have sacrificed them for something that we thought was a one-shot thing.

Macknight: Mary, I know you have a very busy schedule at the moment. Thanks for taking the time to stop and talk for a while.

That was back in 1983. Now, in 1989, Mary Cleave already was scheduled to make her second trip into Earth orbit. But that would also be her last spaceflight, as Michael Cassutt describes in “Who’s Who in Space” (The ISS Edition, 1999): “Immediately following her STS-30 mission in 1989 she was assigned as a mission specialist for the International Microgravity Laboratory, a Shuttle/Spacelab mission then scheduled for launch in December 1990. However, in January 1990 she withdrew from the assignment because of conflicts with Spacelab program managers at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center.

She was then detailed to the engineering branch of the NASA Johnson Space Center, where she served as special assistant for advanced programs in the crew systems and thermal division until transferring to the NASA Goddard Space Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, in April 1991, as deputy manager for Seaviewing Wide Field Sensors (SeaWiFS) at Goddard. SeaWiFS was launched aboard the OrbView-2 satellite in August 1997 to provide, among other things, data on global warming and El Nino.”

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #14 on: 08/15/2012 07:31 PM »
Only you…

Dear Editor:
Taking a closer look at the STS-30 crew portrait, I found astronaut Mary Cleave wearing a non-NASA emblem – a Smokey the Bear pin! Out of curiosity, you wouldn’t know why? – Charlie Atkeison IV, Atlanta, Georgia

Dr. Cleave lists skiing, sailing, hiking and camping as her hobbies, so she is undoubtedly interested in preserving the areas where these events take place. As a doctor of Environmental Engineering, conservation is a concern of hers. – Donald Andrew Gardner, Assistant Editor, Countdown

(“Air to ground,” Letters to the Editor, Countdown, July 1989 – edited)

Offline Ares67

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #15 on: 08/15/2012 07:32 PM »
Smokey Bear is the mascot of the U.S. Forest Service. He was created in 1944 for an advertising campaign to educate the public about the dangers of forest fires – “Only you can prevent forest fires…” So, maybe Mary Cleave just wanted to celebrate Smokey’s 45th birthday by wearing that pin on the official STS-30 crew portrait.

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #16 on: 08/15/2012 07:34 PM »
And at 68, Smokey, meanwhile fighting all kinds of wildfires, still seems to have a strong connection to the space program – currently a Smokey Teddy Bear “lives” aboard the ISS; Expedition 31 flight engineer Joe Acaba carried this furry companion into orbit aboard Soyuz TMA-04M in May 2012.  :)

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #17 on: 08/15/2012 07:36 PM »

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #18 on: 08/15/2012 07:38 PM »

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Re: Atlantis STS-30 – One Touch of Venus
« Reply #19 on: 08/15/2012 07:39 PM »
Mission STS-30 – Rebirth and Marriage

STS-30 marks both a rebirth and a marriage. For the first time in nearly a dozen years, the U.S. will launch a planetary mission. For the first time in the 30-year history of NASA, the unmanned planetary program and the manned program will join in one mission. The four-day STS-30 mission, to be launched aboard Atlantis on April 28, 1989, carries one main goal – to deploy the Magellan probe to Venus.

“It is symbolic in that we have not previously launched planetary probes from the shuttle,” says Mission Commander Dave Walker. “I don’t really believe there are two space programs. I think there is one space program. Manned and unmanned are combined to do the same thing, and this is the logical marriage of the two branches of the one space program.” – Although, thinking about the consequences of the Challenger explosion, one might also find good arguments for both programs going their separate ways…

The flight is scheduled for launch just 46 days after Discovery lifted off on STS-29. “I feel like we have begun to establish a rhythm wit STS-27 and STS-29,” said STS-30 Lead Flight Director Milt Heflin. “That is a good feeling, and I can’t think of a better way to keep that rhythm going than to involve my friends and colleagues at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. STS-30 starts a series of interplanetary-probe missions. We’re beginning a very scientifically exciting year for the agency.”

As well as being a rebirth for the planetary program, STS-30 stands as another mark of the rebirth of the shuttle program. “We’re very pleased at the way we’ve been able to hold to the established manifest,” says STS-30 Pilot Ron Grabe. “We think that bodes well for the future.”

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