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CosmicRocker
02-24-2011, 10:14 AM
http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/space/os-mike-thomas-titusville-space-progr20110223,0,684232,full.column
TITUSVILLE (SPACE COAST) This city never wanted the space program. Fifty years later, Titusville is getting its wish.

The shuttle is ending, Constellation is canceled, the city is dying, and there is no Buck Rogers from Washington coming to the rescue.

"I don't know what the answer is going to be for Titusville,'' says Dave Curfman.

Dave has been operating his hot-dog kiosk in the Miracle City Mall, for 41 years. When he first opened, the mall was lined with stores and brimming with people.


"We were still going to the moon,'' says Dave. "Everybody had big incomes.''

Miracle City Mall began emptying out when the Apollo program ended.

Now all that remains are J.C. Penney, a GNC, a Prison Book Project collection site and Dave.

Dave is centrally situated in the main corridor. It's like a scene out of "The Twilight Zone." A man wakes to find everyone in the world has vanished. He runs through one empty building after another, and then in the last one he finds Dave, all by himself, quite serene, his hot dogs spinning slowly on the rollers as if nothing had happened.

For his lunch rush one day this week, Dave sold one man two hot dogs. A woman bought nachos.

"Business is slow in general,'' says Dave, who works seven days a week. "But it is particularly slow today.''

Will he survive?

"I raised my family,'' he says. "We have paid off the house and cars. My wife and I are conservative. So we can get by.''

On the outside, Miracle City Mall is a desert of barren concrete. It is on one side of U.S. Highway 1, and the Indian River Lagoon is on the other side. Beauty and the Beast

Titusville the gateway to the spectacular Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge has squandered its scenic setting.

Florida never was known for planning, but Titusville took that shortcoming to an extreme.

The city looks as if it was put together by engineers, using duct tape to join pieces not meant to go together, oblivious to the aesthetic aftermath. Strip shopping centers of all sizes border rows of small brick homes. Neither are aging well.

The best view of the lagoon was blocked by a towering, ugly block condo during the speculation boom.

The highway splits before hitting the town center, enveloping the strip of shops in surround-sound traffic. About 40,000 cars pass through a day.

The Florida Department of Transportation is trying to help with a streetscaping project. It includes 21,000 plants, big palms propped up with wooden braces and a bike path that, to the chagrin of some merchants, has eliminated some street parking.

There are some nice touches, primarily the coffee and bread shops. Maybe these seeds will take root. Maybe beneath the old, tired storefronts there are the makings of a quaint shopping district.

I think Titusville would have been better off if those scientists never showed up in 1950 with a German V-2 rocket, looking for a deserted beach to launch it. The city had an economy based on blue crabs, mullet and oranges. And it didn't want to change.

"When space came, the city fathers said we don't want any part of it,'' says Lee Starrick, the administrator of the U.S. Space Walk Hall of Fame. He is a retired Cape firefighter who has lived in the city since the 1940s.

But Titusville could no longer duck the growth when the moon became the mission in the 1960s.

"It overwhelmed us,'' says Starrick.

Like others who lived through the Apollo layoffs, he tends to be pessimistic.

"After Apollo every third house was empty,'' he says. "Some people left the door open when they left. It's going to be bad again. People are leaving.''

Among them are his daughter, grandchild and son-in-law, who was laid off from his job as a butcher.

Starrick is staying put, but he can't say the same for his Space Walk Hall of Fame Museum. The rusty downtown storefront doesn't attract many visitors. Those who do come will find a very interesting and enthusiastic tour guide. The museum survives by selling shuttle souvenirs during launches.

The remaining launches promise to bring a windfall as crowds gather to witness the end of an era. After that, people will leave and the city will be on its own.

"We are going to try to survive,'' says Starrick, who hopes to move to a location by Space Coast Regional Airport. "If we have to stay here, I'm afraid we're doomed.''

mthomas@orlandosentinel.com or 407-420-5525

CosmicRocker
02-24-2011, 10:17 AM
I'll be outside at 4:50 -i'm about 60 miles from there,and with binoculars can see the craft itself.

Shuttle has been around as long as I remeber, now what will NASA do?

The "brain drain: has already taken most of the engineers away, and GWB's insane idea to go to the moon, as a launching pad to Mars was never gonna fly.

Problem is, we have no more manned space program after this.
I did find this: maybe pretty cool:
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Life aboard the International Space Station will get a little cushier when a robot butler arrives at the orbiting lab later this week.

The space shuttle Discovery, slated to launch Thursday afternoon, is carrying a humanoid robot named Robonaut 2 up to the orbiting lab. Robonaut 2 — also known as R2 — is a prototype robotic assistant designed to help human crews with chores and repairs. Researchers will use the bot as a test bed to help develop more advanced robotic helpers in the future.

"This project exemplifies the promise that a future generation of robots can have both in space and on Earth, not as replacements for humans but as companions that can carry out key supporting roles," John Olson, director of NASA's Exploration Systems Integration Office, said in a statement. [Photos: NASA's Robonaut 2 Space Droid]

The $2.5 million space bot consists of a head and torso, along with a pair of dexterous arms that pack down into a puncher's pose. R2 stands 3 feet, 4 inches (1.01 meter) tall and weighs about 330 pounds (150 kilograms).

R2 is a joint project of NASA and carmaker General Motors. It's the product of a cooperative agreement to develop a robotic assistant that can work alongside humans, whether they're astronauts in space or workers at GM plants here on Earth, NASA officials have said.

The bot is made primarily of aluminum and steel. Its head houses five cameras — including one infrared camera in the mouth — to provide stereo vision and depth perception. The torso contains 38 PowerPC processors, and R2 carries a backpack that can be filled with batteries or a power conversion system. [Infographic: Meet Robonaut 2]

Each of R2's arms can carry about 20 pounds (9.1 kg), and its hands have articulating fingers and thumbs. The robot, which builds on NASA's work with its first Robonaut project, should be able to use the same tools astronauts on the space station use, agency officials said.

Astronauts will install Robonaut 2 inside the station's U.S. Destiny laboratory and put it through some test paces. The goal is to see just what the robot helper can do — how it can work side-by-side with astronauts to make station operations run more smoothly.

"We're going to use Robonaut on orbit to learn more about how robots can take over astronaut tasks — some mundane things and then potentially some of the more dangerous tasks," said Scott Higginbotham, payload manager for Discovery's STS-133 mission.

Robonaut 2 was designed to use both internal and external interfaces, so future bots could eventually be installed on the station's exterior to aid in spacewalks and other difficult or dangerous tasks. However, R2 itself will likely stay inside, officials said, since the bot lacks protection against the extreme cold of space.

As advanced as it is, R2 represents an early stage in the effort to get robots more involved in space travel and exploration.

"I think we see Robonaut as the program does — a technology demonstration," said astronaut Michael Barratt, a mission specialist for STS-133. "This is very much a first step, but we’ll be identifying and mapping some of the tasks and capabilities that Robonaut demonstrates over the years."

http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/02/24/robot-butler-hitching-ride-space-shuttle-discovery/

Roger from Ohio
02-24-2011, 12:16 PM
I think the space program is the greatest thing America ever did..

and here it is after being gutted.... finishing up as a whimper.

There just arent heroes in America any more..... greedy bastards took over and ruined so much.

CosmicRocker
02-24-2011, 12:44 PM
I think the space program is the greatest thing America ever did..

and here it is after being gutted.... finishing up as a whimper.

There just arent heroes in America any more..... greedy bastards took over and ruined so much.
Sad thing it didn't have to be this way, we had a great lead for years, but UTTER mismanagement/mission creep/ budgetary fluctuations year by year made long term planning impossible for NASA.

Some things should be left out of politics -GWB's INSANE ideas to "build a launching pad on the moon to go to Mars" was all out crazy.

He put the next to last last nail in the coffin - Obama just came in and said
"privitize it" well that's fine.
In the meantime we have no manned space program.
Droids, probs, etc, but we've lost all advantages -which lead to a technology gap, as we are not inventing things for space travel, that spin off to industrial/consumer products.

Prety sad state of affairs, another loss for 21st century America

CosmicRocker
02-24-2011, 03:45 PM
-w5sE82dKV0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-w5sE82dKV0

Bill Cosby
02-24-2011, 04:23 PM
Don't be sad fella's the guVment is gonna make sure that money saved will be put to good use.........

Bailouts, wallstreet bonuses & pay raises, those new jets everyone is talking about & cases of drone joysticks........

COuple new military installations somewhere....

There is no oil in space, get over it...........

ziggy
02-24-2011, 04:40 PM
YqtgEmTeajc

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 04:53 PM
already a glich...here it goes

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 04:57 PM
something just fell off that shuttle.

maybe ice.

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 05:02 PM
all these years, it's still exciting...

in orbit now.

CosmicRocker
02-24-2011, 09:26 PM
There is 1 more launch in April my facts wrong.

cottonbroker1
02-24-2011, 10:20 PM
I'll miss that certain brand of adreneline that NASA has brought to the table of my life for so many years...I wish I could go back in time and see it all again...just one more time....

Brian_W
02-24-2011, 10:51 PM
There is 1 more launch in April my facts wrong.
That is the flight Giffords husband will be on.

T-Cat
02-24-2011, 10:54 PM
There is 1 more launch in April my facts wrong.Today was the last flight for the shuttle Discovery. The Endeavour has one more flight later this year and then that's all she wrote.

Could you see it with Binoculars?

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 10:57 PM
I think there are two flights left guys, one with Endeavor around mid april and then later, one more.

I might be wrong.

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 10:59 PM
That is the flight Giffords husband will be on.

That's affirmative....




:D

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 11:01 PM
Today was the last flight for the shuttle Discovery. The Endeavour has one more flight later this year and then that's all she wrote.

Could you see it with Binoculars?


Did you watch the the take-off? something fell off, but it looked like ice...and they were near orbit.

Just wondering what you thought.

T-Cat
02-24-2011, 11:02 PM
I think there are two flights left guys, one with Endeavor around mid april and then later, one more.

I might be wrong.I think you are right, the shuttle Atlantis is scheduled for one more flight after the Endeavour but I don't think they've received the funding for it yet.

T-Cat
02-24-2011, 11:03 PM
Did you watch the the take-off? something fell off, but it looked like ice...and they were near orbit.

Just wondering what you thought.I watched the takeoff but I didn't see anything fall off. It couldn't have been ice from the launch though because it has been quite warm in Florida.

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 11:15 PM
I watched the takeoff but I didn't see anything fall off. It couldn't have been ice from the launch though because it has been quite warm in Florida.

the ship was already near orbit, so a camera view from the shuttle took over, and two pieces of something clearly broke away. They looked small and didn't appear to hit anything.
It caused Dylan Ratigan to say, uhhhh what was that? So I know I wasn't seeing things...
:D
...in rewind with the DVR, it did look like ice. But you know, things are moving so fast, I couldn't get a good shot with pause.

hmmmm, now I'm really going to wonder what the heck that was.


Does Nasa have a chat room/message board or something? :lmao2:

I really don't want to worry about these guys for a week. I watched both shuttle disasters live.

T-Cat
02-24-2011, 11:22 PM
the ship was already near orbit, so a camera view from the shuttle took over, and two pieces of something clearly broke away. They looked small and didn't appear to hit anything.
It caused Dylan Ratigan to say, uhhhh what was that? So I know I wasn't seeing things...
:D
...in rewind with the DVR, it did look like ice. But you know, things are moving so fast, I couldn't get a good shot with pause.

hmmmm, now I'm really going to wonder what the heck that was.I can't see how it would ice up during the flight although maybe all that liquid fuel evaporating could make it cold enough for ice to form on the surface. Hopefully it wasn't insulation.

Sephiri
02-24-2011, 11:32 PM
I can't see how it would ice up during the flight although maybe all that liquid fuel evaporating could make it cold enough for ice to form on the surface. Hopefully it wasn't insulation.

EXACTLY what I was thinking. Maybe I'll start googling, I think ice does form.

Let's put it this way, ice won't matter considering how far they were out and it didn't seem to strike anything, but if that was insulation, then we aren't talking "small" anymore. Those would be huge pieces.

I'll google.

AK Gandy
02-24-2011, 11:41 PM
-w5sE82dKV0

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-w5sE82dKV0

The very first tape I bought, for my newly installed 8 track........... in my first car!!! :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:


I guess that makes me old. :doh:

.

Sephiri
02-25-2011, 12:03 AM
I don't know how this guy found the vid on you tube, I couldn't find one that went this far into flight...

start watching at 5:00, around 5:12...tiles, foam or ice break off.

http://www.flightsim.com/vbfs/showthread.php?227389-What-fell-off-the-space-shuttle-today

just scroll down, first entry...and then they discuss.

Sephiri
02-25-2011, 12:29 AM
http://us.cnn.com/2011/US/02/24/nasa.shuttle/index.html?hpt=T2


NASA confirms foam, unlikely to cause any damage due to flights altitude. (air thiness)

CosmicRocker
02-25-2011, 09:36 AM
Today was the last flight for the shuttle Discovery. The Endeavour has one more flight later this year and then that's all she wrote.

Could you see it with Binoculars?
Ya. I can see seperation, and the craft itself.

Leaves a long trail that dissipates.

CosmicRocker
02-25-2011, 09:38 AM
the ship was already near orbit, so a camera view from the shuttle took over, and two pieces of something clearly broke away. They looked small and didn't appear to hit anything.
It caused Dylan Ratigan to say, uhhhh what was that? So I know I wasn't seeing things...
:D
...in rewind with the DVR, it did look like ice. But you know, things are moving so fast, I couldn't get a good shot with pause.

hmmmm, now I'm really going to wonder what the heck that was.


Does Nasa have a chat room/message board or something? :lmao2:

I really don't want to worry about these guys for a week. I watched both shuttle disasters live.
Not sure what that was, somme kinna Cosmik Debris ( Zappa)