Author Topic: 61-A Challenger launch - transcript/ pics  (Read 3752 times)

Offline AstroRJY

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61-A Challenger launch - transcript/ pics
« on: 05/11/2007 12:34 am »
Here is one I did today from the last round trip of Challenger, 61-A, the 22nd shuttle flight.

Launched at 12:00 noon October 30, 1985 carrying a crew of 8.  The one and only time the shuttle has flown with 8 people at launch: CDR Hank Hartsfield, PLT Steve Nagel, MS's James Buchli, Guion Bluford, Bonnie Dunbar, PS's Reinhard Furrer, Ernst Messerschmid and Wubbo Ockels.

KSC PAO was Jim Ball; JSC PAO was L.J. Lawrence

Interesting note: This is one of the few launches where the PLT answers some of the calls from Houston during ascent. Usually that is done only by the CDR.  There is a pattern to this.  On STS-4, Mattingly had PLT Hartsfield answer the major calls from Houston during launch.  Then on 41-D when Hartsfield was CDR, he had PLT Mike Coats answering the CAPCOM.  Now here on 61-A Hartsfield has PLT Nagel answering some of the calls and the CAPCOM is none other than Mike Coats, who was Hartsfield's PLT on 41-D. (And now JSC Director.)  Kinda neat huh?

I wrote these transcripts from the various mission highlights resoruce videos which I borrowed in the mail from JSC about 15 years ago.  I believe they still do that for the public.  They can ship to you and you can watch or duplicate them then ship them back.

For main engine start, they had the standard 070 pad camera shot zoomed in to the tail and engines.  For SRB ignition and lift-off they had camera 063-- zoomed out, as I wish they would nowadays-- showing the entire lower left side of the vehicle and the flame trench.  (This must have been a trend on NASA Select TV  in 1985 because they did the same thing for 51-D, 51-B, 51-F and 51-J too, as you  have seen on the archives.)  Challenger rises above the steam and clears the tower from a wide shot zoomed out from TV-1, south of the pad and then most of the rest of first stage is TV-3/ TV-4 the beach tracker looking at the roll and then (because of the roll angle) the left SRB and left wing of the orbiter as Challenger goes upward and downrange.  Then a long-range tracker for SRB tailoff, burnout and sep.

Sorry I don't have the means to upload the actual vids yet, so hope this will suffice for now and fill in some gaps for those who haven't seen launches from the mid-80's era.
In a couple cases the commentator is talking at the same time as someone else but you can still clearly hear what everyone is saying.


-00:14 KSC PAO: Minus... 13 seconds.

-00:10 LTD: T minus 10.

-00:10 KSC PAO: Minus 10.  

-00:09 GLS: GLS go for main engine start.
-00:09 KSC PAO: We’re Go for main engine start.

-00:07 LTD: 7, 6,

-00:05 KSC PAO: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, we have ignition and lift-off!  Lift-off of Challenger and the Spacelab D-1 mission.  And the shuttle has cleared the tower.

+00:08 JSC PAO: Houston controlling now
+00:09 CDR Hartsfield: Roll program.

.JSC PAO: Roll program initiated.
+00:10 CAPCOM Mike Coats: Roger roll, Challenger.

+00:13 JSC PAO: This 102-degree roll puts the ship on the proper attitude for flight downrange on the 57 degree inclination; wings level.

+00:22 CAPCOM: Challenger-Houston, the cryo H2 pressure is a ducer.  (transducer)
(Apparently a caution/warning light on one of the fuel cell H2 readings.)

+00:25 PLT Nagel: Roger, Thank you.

+00:30 JSC PAO: We’re throttling down now for limitation of dynamic pressures on the ship as we pass through the sound barrier.

+00:40 All three main engines running smoothly now at 65%, we’ll throttle back up momentarily.

+00:52 Velocity 2,000 feet per second  Altitude 4.3 nautical miles, 3 miles downrange

+01:05 And throttles now coming back up smoothly, all 3 at 103%--104% of thrust now.

+01:15 CAPCOM: Challenger-Houston, Go at throttle up.

+01:17 PLT: Roger, Go at throttle up.

+01:19 JSC PAO: All 3 main engines continue to run smoothly, velocity 3,000 feet per second, distance downrange 8 nautical miles, altitude 11 miles.  Fuel cell performance quite nominal.  APUs running smoothly.  

+01:39 All 3 main engines performing nominally.

+01:53 Standing by for call of "PC less than 50," which is a precursor to solid motor separation.

+02:00 PLT: PC less than 50, Houston.

+02:02 CAPCOM: Roger, PC less than 50.

+02:04 That call on time; booster separation now occurring.

+02:06 CDR Hartsfield: We have sep.

+02:08 CAPCOM: We copy sep.

Tags: STS-61A Spacelab