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Re: UFOnet: Fwd = Space Station Warranty to Expire

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  • Leandro
    SunCruiser, ovni and ufos. http://www.ciranda.cjb.net*********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********On 28/03/00, at 14:26, Frits Westra wrote:From: Frits
    Message 1 of 3 , Apr 3, 2000
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      SunCruiser, ovni and ufos.

      *********** REPLY SEPARATOR ***********

      On 28/03/00, at 14:26, Frits Westra wrote:

      >From: Frits Westra <fwestra@...>
      >Forwarded by: fwestra@...
      >URL: http://abcnews.go.com/sections/science/DailyNews/shuttlewarranty000327.html)
      >Original Date: Tue, 28 Mar 2000 03:07:55 +0200
      >========================== Forwarded message begins ======================
      > Space Station Warranty to Expire
      > Barren Space Station Neglected Due to Lack of Russian Funds
      > By Marcia Dunn
      > The Associated Press
      > C A P E C A N A V E R AL, Fla., March 27 -- NASA's space station
      > warranty runs out this week, and the agency is no closer to finishing
      > the project than it was when the first two pieces rocketed into orbit
      > in 1998.
      > After almost 500 days aloft, the international space station has
      > no occupants, no experiments, no firm assembly plans. Instead, it's a
      > barren two-roomer with bad batteries, noisy equipment and poor
      > ventilation.
      > Blame the Russians: They were supposed to launch a service module
      > that would assume control of the station and provide living quarters
      > just five months after the initial components soared, but they have
      > been stymied by insufficient funds and malfunctioning rockets.
      > As a result, the all-important third component, the Zvezda
      > service module, will not fly before July and astronauts and cosmonauts
      > will not move in until October -- at the earliest.
      > Warranty for Russian-built Equipment
      > In the meantime, the warranty for what's in orbit is expiring. And
      > that has space shuttle astronauts flying to the rescue next month.
      > The 496-day guarantee for Russian-built electronic equipment runs
      > out Thursday, according to figures provided last year by then-station
      > manager Frank Culbertson, an astronaut who will command a future
      > station crew.
      > NASA expects the space station to keep running normally until
      > astronauts arrive in mid- to late April with new batteries, fans, air
      > filters, fire extinguishers and smoke detectors. The astronauts were
      > supposed to wait until the service module was in place, but with the
      > warranty expiring and batteries failing, NASA moved up the visit.
      > "Would you like it to fall out of the sky?" asks NASA
      > Administrator Daniel Goldin. "I mean, we're going to go up and keep it
      > in good repair and we'll be ready for the service module when it
      > comes."
      > Space station chief Michael Hawes expects the upcoming repairs by
      > astronauts to extend the certified lifetime of the orbiting Zarya
      > control module to the end of this year.
      > Neither Hawes nor program manager Tommy Holloway is overly
      > concerned.
      > No Cause for Concern
      > The design lifetime of parts is "mostly paper analysis kind of stuff,"
      > Holloway says. "As you know with your automobile, it may break a day
      > after you drive it out of the showroom and it may run for 100,000
      > miles."
      > Built by Russians with U.S. funds, Zarya was launched from
      > Kazakstan on Nov. 20, 1998. That's when the 496-day warranty began.
      > NASA sent up a connecting chamber called Unity two weeks later.
      > Since then, the space station has circled Earth nearly 8,000
      > times. Shuttle crews have been inside twice to drop off supplies and
      > make repairs.
      > The main trouble has been the batteries. Six are on board to
      > provide power and have been faltering one by one.
      > In addition, a crane attached to the outside of the station by
      > spacewalking astronauts last spring is not locked down properly. The
      > next shuttle crew will go out to secure it. The crew also will take
      > numerous air samples; the last visitors suffered headaches and nausea,
      > supposedly because the air ventilation was disturbed by maintenance
      > work.
      > Russians Lack Money
      > Zarya, Russian for Sunrise, was not designed to fly so long by itself,
      > says Hawes. It was modeled after Russian lab modules that were
      > self-sustaining units until they docked with space station Mir's nerve
      > center.
      > "We've always known that Zarya was a less capable module from a
      > lifetime standpoint," Hawes says. "But we have done quite a bit of
      > work ... to try to understand where the issues are component by
      > component, and that is what's really defined our mission for this
      > upcoming flight."
      > The problem is that for years, the Russians lacked the money to
      > complete Zvezda, Russian for Star. Now that it's done, the module
      > fails to meet NASA safety standards for noise, self-sustaining
      > equipment and shielding against space junk.
      > Then Russia's Proton rockets began failing. That's the type of
      > rocket needed to launch the heavy Zvezda.
      > "Right now, as I see it, the only thing standing in the way of
      > launching the service module is a demonstration flight from the
      > Proton," says NASA's boss, Goldin.
      > NASA Has Backup Plan
      > He'd like to see four or five successful Proton launches before the
      > Zvezda service module flies. Just in case, NASA is building its own
      > control module, which could be ready to go by December.
      > Goldin and others are quick to point out that NASA has had its
      > share of space station problems, most notably in computer software.
      > Boeing, the prime contractor, projects cost overruns of close to $1
      > billion, according to NASA's latest inspector general report.
      > The most embarrassing debacle occurred last month. With so many
      > stockpiled parts, workers accidentally threw out two oxygen and
      > nitrogen tanks at the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.
      > The tanks were worth $750,000.
      > Russian delays, meanwhile, have cost NASA as much as $3 billion.
      > Ironically, NASA and its foreign partners had invited Russia into the
      > international space station program in 1993 in hopes of saving time
      > and money.
      > Given all this, should NASA have waited to launch the first two
      > space station components when it was obvious the service module was in
      > deep trouble?
      > NASA officials are loath to second-guess that decision. But
      > former astronaut Jerry Linenger, who spent nearly five months on Mir
      > in 1997, says it was a political maneuver.
      > "Kind of you do it, then everyone has to come up with more money
      > or you've got things floating up there doing nothing," Linenger says.
      > NASA clearly anticipated delays, especially as Russia's political
      > and economic problems worsened. But no one guessed the Russians would
      > take this long to launch the service module. A 496-day warranty seemed
      > plenty.
      > "That's a long way off," Culbertson said with a shrug last year.
      > He's no longer shrugging.
      > Copyright 2000 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
      >========================== Forwarded message ends ========================
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