Sunday, May 15, 2011
".. but that's not meant to be."
What to make of a remark settling at the bottom of an article:
The shuttle program's end, and the uncertainly surrounding the future of NASA and the U.S. space program, have been hot topics in recent months. NASA's shuttle launch director Michael D. Leinbach acknowledged Saturday that "the mood is a little bit downcast" in the space agency, especially with some NASA employees getting notices this week warning them that they could lose their jobs.
"The timing is a little unfortunate, but we've all known it's been coming," he said.
Endeavour entered service in 1992 as a replacement for the ill-fated Challenger, which exploded in 1986.
Leinbach, who was a test director for Endeavour's inaugural mission, said the orbiter remains in prime condition 19 years later.
"She still looks awfully good out there," he said. "She's got a lot of life left in her, but that's not meant to be."
Challenger - Jan 28 1986
Chernobyl - April 26 1986
Fukushima - March 11 2011
Endeavour - May 16 2011
With it being the last flight by Endeavour, its 'death' so to speak, it appears in the same year as a major nuclear accident. Many other shuttles have probably been decommissioned without attendant nuclear fallout, but due to Mrs Giffords shooting, the event has taken on extra attention.
Maybe they need some extra rads on Earth to highlight something they will record from space.