STF: STSF-131 Landing

George Schellenger and Tim Bailey report from the Shuttle Landing Facility at NASA Kennedy Space Center on April 20, 2010. Space Shuttle Discovery landed after nearly 16 days in space during mission STS-131.

You can also check out our latest video of the STS-131 Landing on Vimeo!.

Extended STF: President Obama goes to NASA

George Schellenger and Tim Bailey at NASA KSC

George and Tim in front of NASA's VAB

George and Tim take a broad look at President Obama’s trip to NASA from Space X to Orion. What’s in it for you? How can you get involved? This time on the Space Task Force.

Click here to download STF Video: President Obama’s Visit to KSC

STS-130, First of the Final Five Launches

After low-lying clouds scrubbed the first attempt, STS-130 took off at 4:14 am in what is scheduled to be the last night launch of a space shuttle. The Space Task Force was on hand for the historic launch of Endeavour–as we will be for each of these ‘Final Five’ launches in 2010.

STS-130 is carrying the Tranquility module (formerly known as “Node 3”) along with the special multi-window “cupola” viewport. The crew of Endeavour will spend their first two days catching up to the space station before docking to start their mission.

The orbiter is scheduled to return to Kennedy Space Center Stay late on Feb 20 after 13 days in space. Stay tuned to the Space Task Force as we continue our extended mission coverage of STS-130 from rollout to the pad to rollout on the runway.

You can also download the video here: STS-130 Launch!

STS-130 Scrub

This is what it looks like at 4:30am in the KSC Press Center when a launch is scrubbed.

All eyes are on the Flight Director, waiting for his call. The launch polling just ended with two “NoGo” calls due to weather. Things have been tentative and getting worse all day.
Finally, he makes the tough call and scrubs the launch attempt. Everyone is a bit disappointed, but we know it is the safest thing to do. Now the press, much like the astronauts, must clean up enough to move out for a few hours and come back tomorrow.
Unlike the astronauts, we can get in our cars and go back to hotels (or for some of us, home to our families).  The crew of STS-130 has hours of work to do shutting-down the orbiter and getting out of their launch suits before they can retire–in quarantine–to the confines of the astronaut quarters.
And yet, there is a bit of excitement in the air knowing that we get to do it all again. We’d all prefer to have a good launch the first time, but there is also a knowledge that we won’t have many more shuttle launches. Very few of the Go/NoGo pollings are left to call. We’ll cherish every one and, if needed, come back and do it all again.
Good night, everyone. See you tomorrow!

STF 30: A Piece of the Action

Click here for: STF30 – March 1, 2009

When it comes to space, states across America are looking to the future, ready for a piece of the action. We’ll take a look at Yuri’s Night, see why there’s extra space on board SpaceShipTwo and preview ISDC. Join us in the “No Gravity Zone” as we launch… right now.

Click here for: STF30 – March 1, 2009

Episode 29: Orbital Mechanics Meets Orbital Junk

Click here for: STF29 – Feb 20, 2009

Is there enough space in space? George and Tim take on the big issues in this episode from colliding satellites to how it could impact a mission to the Hubble Space Telescope. Plus – the debut of new music for Yuri’s Night – expanded dates for Yuri’s Night and ISDC 2009. Come on in, the “No Gravity Zone” is open for business.

Click here for: STF29 – Feb 20, 2009

2007 X PRIZE Cup begins!

2007 X Prize CupThe 2007 X PRIZE Cup kicks off today at Holloman Air Force Base in Alamogordo, NM! This year the X PRIZE Foundation has teamed up with the Holloman air show to have a joint “Air & Space Expo” instead of two separate events.

One of the signature events at the Air & Space Expo will be the Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander Challenge, one of the NASA Centennial Challenges. Last year, only one competitor made it onto the field. This year there are rumors of up to nine teams competing for $2 million in prize money. The Space Task Force will give you updates after the competition. May the best teams win!

Until our next live feed, be sure to check out our video update from the launch of STS-120!