Fire in the Sky.
Perhaps you saw moonwalk veteran astronaut Buzz Aldrin
attempt on NBC to read a poem he received in e-mail Saturday, and falter in tears. It was actually lyrics to the Jordin Kare song "Fire in the Sky,"
a tribute to manned space exploration:
Prometheus, they say, brought God's fire down to man.
And we've caught it, tamed it, trained it since our history began.
Now we're going back to heaven just to look him in the eye,
and there's a thunder 'cross the land, and a fire in the sky
posted by Tubes
on Feb 3, 2003 -
So, why hasn't the Shuttle been replaced? Because it hasn't been easy. In the late 80's and early '90s, the cold-war-fantasy-cum-shuttle-replacement was the X-30 National Aerospace Plane (NASP)
that was supposed to take off and land like a plane flying on super-fast Scramjet engines
that, alas, were never really successful...
In the late '90s, the New Economy, space-exploration-on-VC-money shuttle replacement was the X-33 VentureStar
program which was eventually cancelled
, after a long and turbulent history
. The X-33/VentureStar was one of the most technologically daring machines ever built --albeit too
daring. I cannot mention the X-33 without mentioning the ingenious-but-untested linear aerospike engine
that was going to take it to orbit. If the US is now (again) considering a Shuttle replacement, maybe the Delta Clipper
is worth a second look. The DC-X was a competitor for the X-33 program that was eventually scrapped, for technological and other reasons
. At least the Russians and Europeans liked it so much better than the other New Shuttle options that they copied it
posted by costas
on Feb 2, 2003 -
My house's windows just rattled from a sonic boom, so that means the space shuttle's home again
. I kind of forget about these things until a little visceral something like that brings you back in touch. Int'l Space Station that much closer to completion. Living in the future is cooooool.
posted by logovisual
on Jul 24, 2001 -