For the first time…..first lanuches…

As the Space shuttle program draws to a close during this week on spending its last duration flight of 12 days in space in with the International Space station, and Atlantis ending the program on STS 135, ending a brilliant 30 years hard-working  programme in which could lasted a little bit longer, given that there was another vehicle emplaced from the last time Atlantis lands on that runway, for the very last time. on that note it’s also the Day when Apollo 11 landed on the moon.

One interesting thing watching the 30 years of the  Space Shuttle programme, is the televised shift from analogue to complete digital now viewed from the Cathode Ray Tube to the internet of watching it through NASA TV, via USTREAM.

Space Shuttle Enterprise OV 101– the sister that start in all.

Space Shuttle Columbia OV-102 STS 001

Space Shuttle Challenger OV-099 STS 006

Space Shuttle Discovery OV-102 STS 41-D- with an abort launch.

Space shuttle Atlantis OV-104– STS 51-J

Space Shuttle Endeavour OV-105 – STS 49

STS | space transport system

That  night staying up till the early hours in the morning  and didn’t get to sleep till roughly fourish in the morning. watching the last launch of the Space Shuttle programme on NASA TV on ustreamTV.  It was ionic sad really that a there’s no transitional vehicle program to immediately to replace it within straight after. But least a year or so we’ll have to wait till when Space X with their Dragon and Falcon heavy or Boeing’s Orion and using the Shuttle’s heritage design to replace the role of the Shuttle.

Looking back when back in the early Eighty’s, that is the late twentieth Century on the date of  April 21 1981. Watching on the Phillp’s K9 Cathode Ray Tube color television set where TVNZ,  was live broadcasting the live launch of  the Space shuttle Columbia, OV-102, with it’s nicely matt white  painted (ET) External Tank, which carries the fuel of liquid Hydrogen and Oxygen to be combust in the (SSME) Space Shuttle Main Engines, also strapped right next to the ET, a pair of older designs of the ( SRB ) Solid Rocket Booster. using the O-rings, now days they use the J-ring seals designs, a very hard lesson learnth after the STS-51L (Challenger OV-099), which ground the shuttle fleet for a couple of years, till it got the okay to fly on Discovery (OV-103) behalf, also on the return to flight on Columbia’s on July 4 2006 independence Day, after a fatale hull breach of Columbia on February 1st 2003. 

In which lessons from the incidents lead to many redesigning of the existing systems, multiple new cameras was installed on the ET, SRB’s also following after launch checks of the newly extend Canada arm, (RMS) Remote Manipulator System  to do inspecting the Shuttle’s hull scans any foam damage or incursion that incurred during launch also the (ISS) International Space Station  plays a partakes in safety aswell.

Television coverage over the last few decades of watching NASA, have dynamicaly change in from watching coverage from television to the internet and through NASA TV to the NASA app on the iphone. On that note with the advet of the internet providing social media to keep in real time information through Facebook, and Twitter.

One thing I’ve notice in the end of this great programme is the way how they used, the names of the shuttles, for Discovery it been used to inspire once more ever so again to see what’s out there after Challenger and Columbia.  Given the naming of Atlantis, it’s fitting that it there will be another manned vehicle of a different heritage  soon to bear that name also her sisters once more.

Enterprise- OV 101, – Columbia – OV 102- , – Challenger – ov 099 – , – Atlantis  – OV 104, – Discovery- OV 103,- Endeavour OV 105

From STS 001Columbia-OV 102

To STS 135-Atlantis-OV 104