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tv   Reel America Space Shuttle - Mission to the Future - 1981  CSPAN  April 12, 2021 8:30pm-8:59pm EDT

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we talk about the biography of the nation's 13th president. mr. polk who served when mexico was forced to cede much of what was the american southwest. watch tuesday beginning at 8:00 p.m. eastern and enjoy american history tv on every weekend on c-span3. >> american history tv on c-span3 every weekend, documenting america's story, funding for american history tv comes from these companies who support c-span3 as a public service. ♪♪ >> a new door to space opens. the space shuttle.
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everything that has gone before in space, this magnificent treasure is prologue. we are beginning a new and exciting age, signalled by the flight of columbia into earth's orbit. ♪♪ ♪♪ >> columbia is the first of a fleet of ships of the space transportation system. the others to follow, names which evoke the spirit of our purpose on this new ocean, challenger, discovery, atlantis. >> the monitors are all set up. >> the working environment will be quite ordinary. yet the meaning of all this to
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us is far from ordinary. >> okay, joe, i think i'm about done here. i'm going to head on downstairs and fix us something to eat. ♪♪ ♪♪ >> space shuttle, taking as many as four satellites into orbit, has the capability of retrieving orbiting satellites, repairing them in space or bringing them back to earth. >> okay, houston, we had a good eye alignment. time was 4:55:57. and numbers are on the tape and we did get the verification. >> roger, we copy. >> 2:05. >> copy on 2:30. >> the story of james mitchener to congress, there are moments in history when challenges occur of such a compelling nature that
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to miss them is to miss the whole meaning of an epoc h. space is such a challenge. >> i'm james mitchener. for most of my working years on this planet, i've been chronicling the rise and fall of human systems. but there is one thing i'm convinced of from years of studying history, it's that enemies do not destroy nations. time and the loss of will brings them down. to see that this does not happen to this nation of ours, the united states cannot retreat from the challenge of our age. each era of human history progresses to a point at which it is eligible to wrestle with the great problem of that
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period. for the ancient greeks, it was the organization of society. for the medievalists, the spelling out of their relationship to god. for the men of the 15th and 16th centuries, the mastery of the oceans. and for us it is the determination of how mankind can live in harmony on the finite globe we call earth while establishing relationships to an infinite space. >> okay. we're ready for final suit pressure adjustment. >> i am struck with wonder at the energy being expended by thousands of people. not only in the united states, but around the world, who have worked long and hard to overcome technical setbacks to make space travel available. not only to astronauts, but to anyone who wants to journey above our planet and work in space.
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the space transportation system they have developed introduces the decade of the '80s to the space ship columbia, the first of many spacecraft that will be propelled, not on the top of expensive one-time boosters, but by a space transportation system that can be used economically over and over again. >> our endeavor, guided and informed by our history of successes in space flight, is of immense proportions. 10,000 nasa employees at six research centers across our nation, and other centers in canada and europe, the effort has been advanced through over 5,000 contractors, government and industry and over 25 states, and 14 countries.
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it has challenged our creative and engineering genius in both its form and scope. that it has been complex is not deniable. but what monuments can we name to our progress that have been easy? some say it is our destiny to fill the wide vessel of the universe. a demanding role from which we must not retreat. the hangar, the building we call the assembly building, is so vast that robert goddard's first launch would not have escaped its confines. columbia. through her we expect much, and
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now sits our expectation in the air, cradled, to be made into the two solid rocket boosters and the projectile-shaped external tank. >> okay, we're rolling up now. >> today is the day the shuttle passes through the eye of the needle. aboard the elephantine crawler, she goes to 39. it is a trip made with deliberate speed. ♪♪ ♪♪
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♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ >> launch control rehearses. polishes skills, techniques, procedures of that day to come. >> roger, right engine. >> you got data back? >> wrapped in attention and detail, columbia now is not many days from her destination.
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two 15,000 foot run ways, one in california, one in florida, will accept ships when operational missions begin. down range, stations report. and columbia is go for launch. >> loud and clear. >> affirmative, loud and clear on all circuits. >> houston com tech. control houston. ♪♪
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>> the countdown has begun. ignition. ♪♪ ♪♪ >> after two minutes of flight, the solid rocket boosters burn out and fall away. they are recovered in the atlantic 175 miles down range
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from pad 39. to be towed ashore to be used again for another shuttle flight. the main engines continue to burn, and the external tank now empty is jettisoned to fall. in space orbit 150 miles above our planet. [ speaking foreign language ] [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> the astronauts moving with the rotation of the earth, fly into night and into day many times in each orbit. in a 54-hour flight, they will see 36 sunrises and 36 magnificent sunsets as they orbit above the planet earth, looking down on clouds and life below. ♪♪ ♪♪
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>> good morning. this is matthew james in melbourne. reentry poses one of the most critical moments as they are at 8,000 miles per hour. as the shuttle falls into the atmosphere, generates temperatures of up to 2800 degrees. the crew on the columbia have tilted the nose 40 degrees above the horizon. at this altitude they now begin reentry. ♪♪ ♪♪ >> the 31,000 silica fiber tiles on the craft must reject and
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absorb heat without transferring to the interior of the spacecraft. at the center, those on duty, contact has been made to determine -- >> the on-board computers guided by mission control houston and the pilots, fly the shuttle back toward earth. a long very fast glide from mid pacific to california. first at hypersonic speeds, then supersonic, then as the crew makes an approach to the landing at nasa's dryden center, the air speed slows dramatically. ♪♪ ♪♪ [ speaking foreign language ]
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>> the orbiter will be taken to the processing facility for a complete check-out before its next mission. progress is not a monopoly of the united states. the space transportation system will be used by nations of the world. payload space aboard shuttle has been booked ahead by many nations. the signature of the program again reflects the words our astronauts left on the moon. we came in peace for all mankind. and once again, columbia stands ready to be mated to the solid boosters and external tank for another mission. each orbiter is ready to fly up to 100 missions.
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astronaut john young, a veteran of the gemini and apollo programs and first space shuttle crew to go into orbit, astronaut bob griffin, space shuttle pilot on the first flight, both of these men experienced high-performance aircraft pilots. the young and crippen were specialists, analyzed everything. a procedure of the test pilot. each step is questioned, tested. solutions are tried, rehearsed, and the emergency is again simulated. this is the lesson we have learned in over 20 years of manned space flight. in the cockpit or the cabin of the shuttle, a pressure suit is not necessary. work outside in the near vacuum of space requires a pressure
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suit. the astronauts flying in a military jet transport are given brief moments of weightlessness as the pilot maneuvers the aircraft. bob crippen experiences this as he works in his pressure suit. he must learn to use tools. the problem of handling things with his gloves on is compounded by weightless flight. astronauts, mission specialists and payload specialists have a preview of the exhilaration and joy of space flight. ♪♪ survival school taught by the air force, it includes a bit of
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sky sailing and parachute training. at nasa's marshall space flight center, they experience under water training with a full-scale mockup of the payload bay. crew members workout some of the problems they may encounter in weightless condition. ♪♪ they find that movement under water, under mutual buoyancy strangely approximates the conditions they find in space.
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in the next five years, more than 60 space shuttle flights have been scheduled. ♪♪ we will see columbia, challenger, discovery, and atlantis launching into space from pad 39. the earth and its terrain can be a barrier to communications, isolating people and cultures. for some nations, it meant safety and protection and an advancing civilization. others have stayed the same.
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the struggle has been to live. food, water. with satellites, a new age is >> don:ing for all people. >> okay, everything's in position now. >> the role of a mission specialist starts once the orbiter gets on orbit. at that time it's the mission specialist who is really in charge of the orbiter's mission. the mission specialist's role could be anything from opening the payload bay doors to using the remote manipulator system, which is a big 50-foot-long arm that's made by the canadians, to dee power & light a satellite which we carry up in the cargo bay, or retrieve a satellite that might already be in orbit. if there is an experiment that's being carried along this shuttle
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by the mission, it would be the mission specialist that would operate it. anything they are asked to do, the mission specialist would be asked to carry that out. >> science places the creation of the universe 14 billion years ago. >> okay, joe, the camera is zoomed in. if you could go to free drift. >> this shuttle launch telescope may see galaxys at the very time they were formed. revealing the structure and history of creation. deep space probes will add to our knowledge of our solar system. of the far planets. and the cosmology of the galaxies.
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in the coming decades, the shuttle will place networks of satellites into earth's orbit. we will manage our resources, our land, and water, weather forecasting and communication on a global scale. braman, west germany, where essa, the european space agency will fly aboard space shuttle. >> in europe, we are well aware of the space activity taking place in russia and the united states. and we would like to participate in similar activities to benefit from the same technological advances. >> a physicist from the netherlands, a mission in payload specialist and a member of the european space agency. >> there has been a large
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interest in doing manned space activities. and back in '73, they decided to build a space laboratory which would be carried along in space with the american shuttle. about ten different countries, members of the european space agency, participated in the funding and development of this laboratory. germany being one of the bigger participants. it has insight, an atmosphere similar on earth. scientists will go up in this laboratory to do all kind of experiments in space. okay, houston columbia, we're reading you loud and clear. go ahead. >> roger, we got that done. let's see, joe, we have a minute. >> space shuttle will indeed be our work horse in space. with as many as four satellites
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orbited on one mission, >> engine is good. stand by for the execute. 30 seconds. >> the department of defense will have payloads on the 400 flights scheduled over the next 12 years. ♪♪ >> space is not now an american monopoly. it will be less so as time goes on. we are approaching the point where the world community, and not just a few nations, is interested in space. >> dr. isaac asamof, microbiologist, author and lecturer. >> the space shuttle. >> oh, thank you, thank you.
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we are entering a new era of construction engineering and architecture. now for the first time in space, we are going to be able to ignore gravity and build structures that will be strong for other reasons than simply passive resistance to gravitational pull. it's going to be a new kind of architecture. we're going to have pre-fabricated structures which we can just move into position and watch the structures grow before our eyes into new forms and new shapes. the space shuttle will serve the needs of the international community and will be one more strong binding force leading to world cooperation of nations presenting a global front to the space frontier, one that will help everybody, all nations give
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the earth, a way of forming a common consciousness of the planet. ♪♪ >> the maiden voyage of the spaceship columbia signals a new era. the space system, challenger, discovery, atlantis and columbia will be launched and return from space on a regular schedule. ♪♪ ♪♪
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♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ ♪♪ >> week nights this month we're
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featuring american history tv programs as a preview of what's available every weekend on c-span3. on tuesday night, programs about james k. polk. we begin with john siegenthaler talking about the 13th president. he served from 1845 to 1849 may be best known for the westward u.s. expansion when mexico was forced to cede what was the american southwest. watch tuesday at 8:00 p.m. eastern. and enjoy american history tv every weekend on c-span3. >> american history tv on c-span3, every weekend documenting america's story, funding for american history tv comes from these companies who support c-span3 as a public service.

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