First I would like to apologize to my readership, a jam packed weekend and the rigors of grad school required my full attention. With that behind me and a slight reprieve before my next quarter I am back and ready to go.
Remember that shuttle launch last week? Well over the weekend NASA got worried because of some damage thermal blanket on the underside of the orbiter. News reports ranged from “everything was A-OK” to “we’re going to have to abandon Atlantis in orbit” (which would have been pretty fraking intense). Well the engineers at NASA decided that the astronauts needed to fix the 6 inch tear. And get this … they’re using a sewing kit. The most complex machine ever built is going to be hemmed … or is it darned a couple hundred miles above the Earth.
MSNBC reported that:
Engineers have looked at using duct tape or other adhesives to secure the blanket, but are leaning toward a method which would use stainless steel wire as thread and an instrument with a rounded end resembling a small darning needle.
â€œDuct tape doesnâ€™t work in the vacuum of space,â€ said John Shannon, the mission management teamâ€™s chairman.
Amazing. If there is one group of individuals that never fail to disappoint in this American bureaucracy, it’s those engineers down at NASA. More than once they’ve been able to get their people out of impossible situations. I’ll be keeping an eye on this because, well I am a space science nerd.