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STS-107

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  • quarkcsj
    I was up this morning watching Fox News and one of the guys excitedly let people know that people from California to Florida would be able to see the Plasma
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 1, 2003
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      I was up this morning watching Fox News and one of the guys excitedly
      let people know that people from California to Florida would be
      able to see the Plasma trail of the Space Shuttle re-entry as it
      comes in for landing in Florida. I had seen on Spaceweather.com that
      there were a couple of days in a row that the Spaceshuttle would be
      visible passing over North America. This morning hearing the guy on
      Fox reminded me of that so I went online and found the NASA Human
      Spaceflight site with groundtrack maps at
      http://www.spaceflight.nasa.gov/realdata/groundtracs/. I sent Joy an
      e-mail to let her know that she might be able to see it to the south
      in Amarillo.
      The Map on the NASA sight was pretty cool. It updated automatically
      to show where the spaceshuttle was and had a circle to show where it
      would be visible from. The map was showing that it was just passing
      Dallas and the guy on Fox was talking about going to switch to
      Florida for the landing but first they had video just in from an
      affiliate in Dallas of it passing over. Meanwhile the groundtrack
      map had the shuttle passing over Florida and crossing the Atlantic,
      obviously the algorithms in the program couldn't show the shuttle
      slowing down during re-entry. As they were showing that they were
      showing mission control and they were saying that they had lost
      contact. About the same time you could see on the video from Dallas
      the multiple trails of the space shuttle and it was apparent that
      something was not right. Mission control was standing by for the
      shuttle to be coming in and it wasn't until 8:16 CST when Mission
      Control realized that it was not coming. Meanwhile we had been
      watching the breakup on TV since shortly after 8:00. I started
      switching between FOX and CNN. They guy on CNN showed the weather
      radar from Shreveport, LA of a streak on the radar that was the
      debris from the shuttle. I was able to pull that up on the NEXRAD on
      Intellicast. On the loop the debris streaked from just east of
      Dallas to halfway across Louisiana and continued for over 2 hours.
      The President Made a very eloquent speech...
      "...The cause in which they died will continue. Mankind is led into
      the darkness beyond our world by the inspiration of discovery and the
      longing to understand. Our journey into space will go on.
      In the skies today we saw destruction and tragedy. Yet farther than
      we can see there is comfort and hope. In the words of the prophet
      Isaiah, "Lift your eyes and look to the heavens. Who created all
      these? He who brings out the starry hosts one by one and calls them
      each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one
      of them is missing."
      The same creator who names the stars also knows the names of the
      seven souls we mourn today. The crew of the shuttle Columbia did not
      return safely to Earth; yet we can pray that all are safely home.
      May God bless the grieving families, and may God continue to bless
      America."
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