Second Discovery tanking test

May 08, 2005

Following Space Shuttle Program management discussions this week, a plan was laid out today reflecting how the program will move toward the STS-114 Return to Flight launch.
Preparations are under way for a tanking test no earlier than the week of May 15 to continue troubleshooting two issues that arose during another tanking test on April 14. Engineers are evaluating the liquid hydrogen sensors in the tank that gave intermittent readings during last month’s test. These sensors serve as fuel gauges to notify the Space Shuttle Main Engines to shut down when propellants reach a certain level in the tank. This is critical in the safe operation of the main engines. Engineers are continuing to evaluate a liquid hydrogen pressurization relief valve that cycled more times during the tanking test than is standard. This valve opens and closes to ensure the liquid hydrogen stays at the correct temperature.

Following the tanking test, technicians will begin preparations for rolling Space Shuttle Discovery back to the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB). Once in the VAB, orbiter Discovery most likely will be removed (destacked) from its External Tank (ET) and lowered into the transfer aisle. This will be the eighth time in the program’s history that a destacking will be performed following a rollback.

In parallel, the External Tank (ET-121) and Solid Rocket Boosters scheduled to fly with orbiter Atlantis on mission STS-121, is being prepared to fly with Discovery on mission STS-114. The preparation of ET-121 currently is ongoing in the VAB’s checkout cell. A new heater will be added to the feedline bellows to minimize the potential for ice and frost buildup. This heater modification kit arrived yesterday from the tank manufacturing plant in New Orleans and will be installed over the next 24 days. Once Discovery returns to the pad, another tanking test may be performed to test the new modifications.

This week, the STS-114 crew participated in the Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test. This provides the crew and ground teams of each mission an opportunity to participate in various simulated countdown activities, including equipment familiarization and emergency egress training.

Explore further: NASA issues 'remastered' view of Jupiter's moon Europa

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Mutating virus suppresses cow's immune response

Sep 04, 2014

Bovine viral diarrhea virus infections result in one of the most costly diseases among cattle with losses in U.S. herds estimated at $2 billion per year, according to professor Christopher Chase of the South ...

Discovery Wraps up Second Tanking Test

May 20, 2005

Technicians at NASA's Kennedy Space Center conducted a new tanking test on Friday, May 20, at Launch Pad 39-B to continue troubleshooting two issues that arose during the tanking test on April 14.

Discovery Set for Tanking Test on Friday

May 19, 2005

On Friday, technicians at NASA's Kennedy Space Center will conduct a new tanking test at Launch Pad 39 to continue troubleshooting two issues that arose during the tanking test on April 14.

Seeds keep vital much longer when stored without oxygen

Jul 28, 2014

If seed breeding companies, gene banks and the Svalbard Global Seed Vault on Spitsbergen should store plant seeds under oxygen-poor conditions, it would be possible to store them for much longer while still ...

Recommended for you

NASA issues 'remastered' view of Jupiter's moon Europa

Nov 21, 2014

(Phys.org) —Scientists have produced a new version of what is perhaps NASA's best view of Jupiter's ice-covered moon, Europa. The mosaic of color images was obtained in the late 1990s by NASA's Galileo ...

European space plane set for February launch

Nov 21, 2014

Europe's first-ever "space plane" will be launched on February 11 next year, rocket firm Arianespace said Friday after a three-month delay to fine-tune the mission flight plan.

Space station rarity: Two women on long-term crew

Nov 21, 2014

For the 21st-century spacewoman, gender is a subject often best ignored. After years of training for their first space mission, the last thing Samantha Cristoforetti and Elana Serova want to dwell on is the ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.