Many folks would like to see us back on the Moon and developing its resources.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008 Draws to a close and a New Year Ahead

Kendall and Jim sent me links on the recent report on details of how
the Columbia Astronauts died.

Not the most pleasant read for closing a year but food for thought on
what happened and how similar circumstances can affect us all.
Sometimes we don't listen to those who are closest to a problem and
make judgments based on outside pressures.
If you choose to read the articles, please do so with an eye to how we
each conduct our lives in relation to others.
Maybe some pointers on how to make for a better time in the future.
- LRK -

New Report on '03 Disaster Details How Astronauts Died

Seven astronauts slipped into unconsciousness within moments and their
bodies were whipped around in seats whose restraints failed during the wildly
spinning final moments of the shuttle Columbia in 2003, according to a new report from the
space agency.

NASA released a detailed engineering study Tuesday outlining lessons
learned about astronaut survival based on an analysis of the 2003 Columbia
disaster. The study does not provide any significant new details about the
fate of Columbia's crew - investigators earlier concluded the seven
astronauts died of sudden oxygen loss and blunt force trauma as the crew
module broke up - but a new timeline shows the pilots attempted to
troubleshoot a cascade of problems in the final moments before the
spacecraft's computers lost control. The timeline also shows, in grim
detail, the forces acting on the shuttle's crew module in the final minute
or so before it broke apart, subjecting the astronauts to a sudden loss of
air pressure that occurred so rapidly they did not have time to close
their helmet visors.

More links can be found at the NASA Watch post.
- LRK -

Columbia Report Issued
NASA Report: Understanding Columbia's Loss, SpaceRef

"Accidents are things to be avoided. However, by the very nature of
how we currently send humans into space and return them to Earth,
there is a substantial amount of risk involved. Much of that risk has
been identified and is manageable. But not all of it. Of course, when
you hear this discussion, someone inevitably says that the only way to
make these things risk free is not to do them.

Well, we have decided to do these risky things, now haven't we?"

NASA Space Shuttle and Constellation Program Actions Resulting From
SCSIIT Recommendations

What about next year?
- LRK -


MOFFETT FIELD, Calif. - NASA Television will broadcast the annual
FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology)
Robotics Kickoff event on Saturday, Jan. 3, 2009, at 7 a.m. PST from
Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester.

During the live broadcast, FIRST Robotics founder Dean Kamen will
reveal the competition scenario for 2009, launching a six-week design
and building frenzy for thousands of students in 1,687 international
student teams.

The event also will be streamed live at NASA Robotics Alliance Project
(RAP) Web site at

When I was working at NASA Ames these events were always a lot of fun.
I had the opportunity to help as a volunteer in setting up, retrieving
items, and general clean up.
I think the students had more fun even if their robots didn't survive
the ordeals of the game.
A lot of creative work and hands on practice in overcoming adversity.
You can see the potential engineers hard at their tasks.
The adrenaline rush was there.
- LRK -

Well I hear noises in the kitchen with Sangad making Thai food.
It seems we are to have some friends over to remind me I will be a
year older come 10:30 pm.
I try not to look at the magic mirror for it has quit telling me I am
the fairest of them all.
I wish I could wipe the silly smirk off its face.

Bought myself an upgrade to National Instruments LabVIEW and LabWindows/CVI
and will continue studying what makes the brain tick.

The floor has piles of books on the brain, neurobiology, and who folks
think we are.
Best get another book shelf.

Need a longer day and sometimes neglect you folks.

Sangad and I flew up to see Mom(98), my brother and sister and had a great time.
My brother puts on a great spread. The Army daughter and family drove
up after Christmas.

It had snowed for two weeks in the Seattle WA area like I had never seen before.
Two foot of snow and no garbage pickup. Downed trees and power outages, and
people adapt, part of what the human brain helps us do.

Wonder how we will do on the Moon?
Exciting times.

Thanks for looking up with me.

Larry Kellogg

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