Feeds

NASA postpones Discovery ISS jaunt

Ponders pesky hydrogen flow control valve

Build a business case: developing custom apps

NASA has postponed the Discovery STS-119 mission to the International Space Station while it ponders a possibly troublesome hydrogen flow control valve.

The agency explains that the shuttles have "three flow control valves that channel gaseous hydrogen from the main engines to the external fuel tank" - one of which was damaged on Endeavour's STS-126 gig last November.

NASA last Friday decided that "more data and possible testing are required" before a launch, and is additionally looking into "the consequences if a valve piece were to break off and strike part of the shuttle and external fuel tank".

Bill Gerstenmaier, associate administrator for Space Operations at NASA Headquarters in Washington, said: "We need to complete more work to have a better understanding before flying. We were not driven by schedule pressure and did the right thing. When we fly, we want to do so with full confidence."

STS-119 will, when it eventually gets off the ground, deliver the final sets of solar arrays to the ISS to enable it to accommodate a permanent crew of six. NASA elaborates: "The set of solar arrays that the STS-119 crew will be bringing up includes two solar array wings, each of which has two 115-foot-long arrays, for a total wing span of 240 feet, including the equipment that connects the two halves and allows them to twist as they track the sun.

"Altogether, the four sets of arrays can generate 84 to 120 kilowatts of electricity - enough to provide power for more than 40 average homes. Since the three existing arrays can handle the majority of the station's day-to-day operational and life support needs, the newest solar array will double the amount of power available for scientific research."

There's a mission summary here (pdf), and more on the pesky flow control valve here (pdf). ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Gigantic toothless 'DRAGONS' dominated Earth's early skies
Gummy pterosaurs outlived toothy competitors
Boffins ID freakish spine-smothered prehistoric critter: The CLAW gave it away
Bizarre-looking creature actually related to velvet worms
CRR-CRRRK, beep, beep: Mars space truck backs out of slippery sand trap
Curiosity finds new drilling target after course correction
'Leccy racer whacks petrols in Oz race
ELMOFO rakes in two wins in sanctioned race
Astronomers scramble for obs on new comet
Amateur gets fifth confirmed discovery
Boffins build CYBORG-MOTHRA but not for evil: For search & rescue
This tiny bio-bot will chew through your clothes then save your life
Vulture 2 takes a battering in 100km/h test run
Still in one piece, but we're going to need MORE POWER
What does a flashmob of 1,024 robots look like? Just like this
Sorry, Harvard, did you say kilobots or KILLER BOTS?
NASA's rock'n'roll shock: ROLLING STONE FOUND ON MARS
No sign of Ziggy Stardust and his band
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.