Re: [MV] Columbia

From: Ken MacLean (
Date: Wed Feb 05 2003 - 13:26:47 PST

Columbia did not have a docking ring fitted. This clip is from CNN website.

"Because Columbia was in an entirely different orbit than the space station,
it did not have enough fuel to fly to the orbiting outpost. Even if the
shuttle could have limped there, it could not have docked. Columbia was not
equipped with a docking ring since it was never meant to go there. So the
shuttle astronauts would have had to float over in spacesuits to get there."

Possible to do in theory I suppose, but of course NASA was not aware of the
impending catastrophe at that time was it?

----- Original Message -----
From: "Floyd Petri" <>
To: "Military Vehicles Mailing List" <>
Sent: Tuesday, February 04, 2003 8:32 PM
Subject: [MV] Columbia

> Well I have heard about everything that can be said from NASA about how it
> would not have mattered because no one could have done anything about it
> anyway. I have heard from all you arm chair Generals about how terrible is
> was and I agree. I can't stand it any longer. I only post about once or
> twice a year and I just have to say it. Here is my 2 cents worth.
> If I was running NASA the Columbia Astronaughts would be alive today and
> Columbia would not be in a million pieces. I just don't know why no one
> any common sense any more. Here is what I would have done if I was running
> Houston to Columbia. This is the big boss of NASA speaking. Here is what
> are going to do. Just drive on over to the Space Station. Push it higher
> orbit because you are the only one that can do that right now and it needs
> to be done. Great. Good job. Thanks. That saved the Space Station. Now
> listen up. They have the suits and equipment for space walks at the Space
> Station. Tell them to get off their ass and on their feet and go outside
> inspect the Columbia for damage because it was hit on lift off. If it is
> damaged then you just stay at the Space Station a while and enjoy. In the
> meantime I will have my super scientist design and build what ever is
> necessary to repair the tiles on Columbia or what ever is wrong and have
> sent to you on the next supply rocket in a few days. Now quit your
> and tell me that building the Space Station is harder than repairing the
> tiles on Columbia. Yes I thought so too. Now if you get tired and can't
> repair it in a day or two or three just take your time until you get it
> right. Then come home "Alive".
> Yes I think that would have saved everything and everyone I think. And if
> it could not be repaired then this is the next decision. Until such time
> that we can come up with something to repair the Columbia here are my
> orders. Columbia will be assigned to the Space Station and will be left at
> the Space Station for two reasons. First it can be used to push the Space
> Station into a higher orbit when it is necessary. Second it can be used to
> evacuate the Space Station in the event a big asteroid is coming. Since
> Columbia was damaged during lift off and we see the damage then there is
> reason to ground the other shuttles. Another shuttle will be up to bring
> new Space Station rotation crew and to bring Columbia's crew home.
> Floyd.
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