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The Space Above Us

A podcast about the history of NASA human spaceflight. New episodes every other Thursday.
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Now displaying: Page 1
Dec 4, 2022

It's Kent Rominger's birthday, so what better way to celebrate than launching into space? Along the way we'll send CRISTA-SPAS out for one last adventure, try out a Japanese robot arm, take pictures of comets, and try to avoid Blue Screens of Death.

By the way, I did hit a BSOD while editing the episode, but luckily no data was lost!

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Nov 20, 2022

The crew, payload, and orbiter of STS-94 all have unfinished business in low earth orbit thanks to a busted fuel cell on STS-83. Let's kick the tires, light the fires, and then light around 200 more fires, but carefully.

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Nov 4, 2022

Spektr has been sealed off from the rest of Mir and the station's attitude is back under control, but there's still a lot of work left to do. Can the crew regain access to Spektr's solar panels? What happens to laptops left in a vacuum? And who knew that you actually should bring a knife to a space fight!

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Oct 22, 2022

Mike Foale is replacing Jerry Linenger on Mir for NASA's next long duration mission on the Russian space station. After the raging fire and near-collision by a Progress resupply ship on NASA-4, surely things will settle down for a while on NASA-5.. right?

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Oct 6, 2022

It turns out the NASA-5 episode was taking a little more time than I anticipated, can't imagine why. But since I'll be on vacation next week, I would have had to slip by TWO weeks. Rather than leave you all hanging, I have a story about my second rocket launch, along with a little review of early SpaceX history. Plus a trip to Waffle House!

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Sep 24, 2022

On STS-84 we'll deliver Mike Foale to Mir, bring Jerry Linenger back to Earth, wonder how much Elektron really weighs, enjoy the music in the base block, and contemplate the mystical powers of a shouting Marine.

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Sep 11, 2022

The crew of STS-83 is gearing up for a 16 day flight aboard Space Shuttle Columbia. With Spacelab packed full of materials science experiments, everything seemed ready to go.. so why did the flight end up only being four days long?

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Aug 27, 2022

On STS-82 we've got another ground-up rendezvous on our hands. But instead of flying to Mir, we'll be visiting our old friend the Hubble Space Telescope. It's been a few years since STS-61 fixed its optical flaw, and it's due for an upgrade!

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Aug 7, 2022

We've still got half of Jerry Linenger's mission on Mir to cover, and while there aren't any fires, it's just as action packed! We've got near-misses, secret contraband, and a history-making EVA.

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Jul 24, 2022

Jerry Linenger's long duration mission on Mir was so jam-packed that I had to break it up into two parts! In Part 1, we'll heed some lessons from John Blaha, learn where to find extra photographic film, and light some candles during dinner.

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Jul 8, 2022

On STS-81 we'll deliver Jerry Linenger to his new home for the next few months, return John Blaha to Earth, and transfer a few tons of equipment while we're at it. Along the way we'll go for a run, admire a previous crew's DIY fix, and toss some meat and cheese around the Mir base block. Just don't get lost on the way from the orbiter!

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Jun 23, 2022

We've seen him fly on STS-59, STS-68, and STS-80.. and now we'll see him on The Space Above Us! Astronaut Tom Jones joins us and answers a bunch of questions ranging from stopwatches, travel strategies, and pranks on John Young.

Thanks again to Tom Jones for speaking with me. Go check out his website and buy his excellent books! www.astronauttomjones.com

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Jun 13, 2022

STS-80 is jam packed with everything the shuttle program has to offer, which makes sense since it's the longest flight of the entire program! We've got two free-flying payloads, a troublesome EVA, and a reentry to remember.

 

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May 29, 2022

John Blaha is settling in for his four month stay on Mir. Science experiments, clattering fans, limited communications, 14 hour days, and the first ever NASA in-space handover await.

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May 14, 2022

Shannon Lucid has been waiting for her ride home and John Blaha is ready to swap in as America's next long duration spacefarer. We'll also fix our SRBs, try to heat up some metal, and enjoy some barbecue in Atlantis.

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Apr 28, 2022

On this flight we'll be setting new duration records, studying the muscles of the crew, and waking up to some on-theme music. Let's just hope there's enough fuel to make it to orbit!

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Apr 9, 2022

On STS-77, we've got one of the strangest shuttle payloads I've ever seen, a satellite that's passively stabilized by aerodynamic forces (mostly), a bunch of SPACEHAB experiments, and a blast from the past.

Also, here's that deployment video of IAE that I recommend looking up.. wait until you hear about it first! https://youtu.be/adatQ59j6sc?t=1485

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Errata: In the outro I mention how I'm not familiar with any passively stabilized spacecraft. This neglects the entire category of spinners, which is kind of their whole point. But I was thinking of "passively stabilized by aerodynamic forces" and just didn't use my words.

Mar 24, 2022

Astronaut Dan Tani joins us once again and talks about what the astronaut interview process was like, what day to day life was like before being assigned to a mission, wearing the "astronaut suit", what makes a good team, and some sage advice from John Young.

 

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Mar 10, 2022

Shannon Lucid is ready to become the second American to perform a long duration aboard the Russian space station Mir. All she'll need to do is survive Russian language class, memorize a few bolt names, and find her missing shoe.

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Feb 19, 2022

On STS-76, the space shuttle will finally shuttle someone to space! Plus the first American EVA outside a space station in 22 years, antics in the SPACEHAB tunnel, and thoughts about 1996 web design.

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Feb 6, 2022

On STS-75 we'll take another try at the Tethered Satellite System. It didn't work so great on STS-46, but with much of the same crew and a little luck, maybe it will go better. Also on this flight, starting fires in space, and disembodied consciousnesses.

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Jan 23, 2022

After checking in with it for years, Galileo has finally arrived at Jupiter. For the 150th episode of The Space Above Us, let's find out what the Galileo orbiter and probe did while they were out there and why it was worth the wait.

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Jan 6, 2022

I'm taking my first break this week! So instead of an episode, I tell the tale of my first rocket launch, what it's like, and what you can do to make yours even better.

 

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Dec 23, 2021

On Endeavour's tenth flight, we're somehow going to deploy one satellite, but pick up two! Plus more EVA development, zero-gravity karate, and a farewell to a frequent flyer.

 

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Dec 9, 2021

We've docked at Mir before, but moving the Kristall module around is such a hassle. What if we could just make it a little longer so the shuttle could dock with it in its usual location? Also, please don't keep your ice cream next to the blood and urine samples.

 

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