Tuesday, July 04, 2006
I am afraid.
I am terribly worried that there is some big dick contest taking place over there on the east coast of Florida that is driving you to send this space shuttle into flight. I am worried because I once out of boredom watched a shuttle lift off only to see it explode because of a safety issue that had been considered insignificant. I am worried because I once casually strolled into my living room holding my new baby and turned on the tv, only to see the space shuttle screaming across the sky in bits and pieces, because of a safety issue that had been considered insignificant.
The problem with the shuttle today is a piece of foam ON THE EXTERNAL FUEL TANK. It fell off, if you aren't aware. Your grounds crew found it. On the ground. It just fell off. SITTING THERE WITH NO PRESSURE OR HEAT FROM LIFT OFF.
The problem with the Challenger was the O rings on the EXTERNAL FUEL TANK. The problem today that we are blowing off is insulation ON THE EXTERNAL FUEL TANK. You know, the thing that will BLOW UP AND KILL EVERYONE ON BOARD IF IT GETS TOO HOT?
I realize that I'm getting worked up about this, because I've been on Space.com for the past three days reading all of the posts and updates...and I've got a three year old who really wants to see it go up. Living in Florida I am sort of looking forward to it as well, I hope the sky is clear and we can watch it fly. And I hope that I don't take my son outside to watch the most trafic firework EVER on the 4th of July this afternoon.
I am not against the space program. Let's face it, the future of humanity eventually IS space. What a fantastic adventure it will be many lifetimes after mine. I am FASCINATED by space flight.
But I am full of dread and I really really really think it's a bad idea to fly that ship today or any day. And I know where we can get some Soyuz rocket ships cheap.
And they work.
Posted by Gidge Mcneal at 9:35 AM