Thursday, May 5, 2011

T-3 Days for BTS-1 Launch

We are now 3 days away from our "Inspiration" capsule launch as part of the Balloon Transport System (BTS).  On Sunday May 8, 2011 we will launch from Houston, TX. You can all follow us live on Ustream starting at 10:30 AM CST. Our actual launch will happen at approx. 11:00 AM CST. Watch the BTS-1 Launch live here.  And if you would like to learn more about our BTS-1 mission you can go to our mission blog and get some information. 

Since our T-15 days Pre-Flight Medical a lot has happened. The crew arrived at Squaw Valley on April 30 for two reasons. At Squaw Valley the Living with a Star (LWS) Solar Dynamics Observatory is holding a workshop for over 200 solar scientists from all over the world. At this meeting the scientists are sharing information, findings, ideas and their science after Year 1 of having SDO operational. 

The other reason is for Fuzz, Skye and I to get ready for our ballon flight mission. We are doing some high altitude training and team work preparations. As of last night we went into quarantine. Why do we have quarantines at NASA?

Why are we going into quarantine? Well, NASA is cautious about exposing the crew to any and all viruses and bacteria in the preflight phase, whether that be swine flu or the common cold.

In 1963, a special subcommittee of the Space Science Board of the National Academy of Sciences was convened to consider the general problem of handlin
g material and personnel returned from flights to the moon. The subcommittee recommended that NASA establish a quarantine program to ensure that the Earth and its ecology would be protected from any possible hazard associated with the return of lunar material.

Flight crews typically spend seven days split between JSC and Kennedy Space Center in isolation before flight, and the Russian crews spend approximately five days of postflight isolation at JSC.

Once the crew arrives at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center the quarantine is strict, and the crew surgeon is isolated with the crew. The astronauts undergo a second exam two days prior to launch, and are given a brief medical check just before they suit up on launch day. Anyone on the ground who is sick or exhibits any signs of illness is prohibited from working with the crew.

1 comment:

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