Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Good bye Discovery

Well I am sure you know what 3/9/11 is all about. I can't imagine that anyone reading this right now has to have STS 133 explained in detail. However just to put a small cap on it.
  • Discovery landed for the final time here at NASA's Kennedy Space Center at 11:57 a.m. EST
Having that melancholy moment again are we?

And just so can nail it home for Discovery one last time:
  • after 27 years and 39 flights, Discovery's wheels rolled to a stop for the very last time under the warm sun at the Florida spaceport's Shuttle Landing Facility.
Not to lessen the fact that the shuttle program was fraught with engineering failures, cost over-runs - despite the fact that it was never even close to as fast, cheap or safe as it was promoted as becoming - It still was a damn fine space craft of a fleet of supremely capable machines. The people who designed, maintained and flew the system were and are the best in the world at what they do. I know, it's just a machine, but at the risk of anthropomorphizing it - it was a damn fine one! article


Dave Tackett said...

Well said Paul. It is a sad day.

Beam Me Up said...

Thanks Dave, why am I not surprised that you get it too. I mean, Mercury when it ended was just a doorway to the brightness that was Gemini. With the ground breaking accomplishments of that program were in the history book, we were ready for Apollo. When 17 splashed down (not even a live event now but a couple minutes of Dan...I was already missing Walter plus Chet was history now as well) it seems sad but there were so many projects that seemed to promise bigger and better things. Skylab held some promise and these new "lifting bodies" were proving mystery and excitement with the possibilities of low cost delivery of science to LEO. Then Enterprise "flew" and the ISS was becoming a real possibility. Big things in our future......and then today Discovery's flying days are done. I begin to feel old.