View Full Version : Discussion: Second Interim Return To Flight ...

2004-May-19, 05:48 PM
SUMMARY: NASA has been working for the past several months to implement the changes requested by the Columbia Accident Investigation Board. The Stafford-Covey Task Group released their second interim report today, which tracks the status of the Return to Flight effort. Three of the fifteen recommendations have been completed, and they expect to wrap up several more by the summer. One of the most difficult tasks so far has been to eliminate falling debris during launch - it was a piece of foam that fell off the fuel tank that critically damaged Columbia - engineers are worried that the only way to test if the problem has been fixed is by actually launching the shuttle.

What do you think about this story? Post your comments below.

2004-May-19, 11:22 PM
I believe that the foam story is not complete. Lets look at some facts.
Foam breaks off during lift off. If it comes off, it must first be broken. Broken? How? During lift off or moving the vehicle? No. The foam is designed for it. I think its just boils down to a bad paint job. Think about it. If part of the foam is saturated with water, would it be heavier? Would it expand when frozen and cause cracking. Would it change the physical property of the foam and push it out of design paramiters? It happens to cement. Do you think foam is weaker? Do you think if a broken piece of foam is saturated with water it would be heavier. If that water was frozen. It would be like a stone. The shuttles can be modfied to handle dropping foam. How about falling stones?

Eric Vaxxine
2004-May-20, 10:32 AM
I think they should return to one of the original plans...where the shuttle sits forward of the main fuel tank, not in the middle of it.

John L
2004-May-20, 04:52 PM
The earlier shuttle main fuel tanks didn't have this problem, but the foam was environmentally unfriendly so it was replaced in the early 1990's with a different foam, that also had the problem of shedding from the tank. Go back to the old foam and to heck with the environment!

Eric Vaxxine
2004-May-21, 09:51 AM
The original foam that was used is more unfriendly than burning all that fuel and generating all that smoke? <_<

:angry: Mus&#39; be awful unfriendly.