Cool links


The opinions expressed on this page are those of the author, and very likely no one else.

Privacy Policy


01 Aug - 31 Aug 2004
01 Sep - 30 Sep 2004
01 Oct - 31 Oct 2004
01 Nov - 30 Nov 2004
01 Dec - 31 Dec 2004
01 Jan - 31 Jan 2005
01 Feb - 28 Feb 2005
01 Mar - 31 Mar 2005
01 Apr - 30 Apr 2005
01 May - 31 May 2005
01 Jun - 30 Jun 2005
01 Jul - 31 Jul 2005
01 Aug - 31 Aug 2005
01 Sep - 30 Sep 2005
01 Oct - 31 Oct 2005
01 Nov - 30 Nov 2005
01 Dec - 31 Dec 2005
01 Jan - 31 Jan 2006
01 Feb - 28 Feb 2006
01 Mar - 31 Mar 2006
01 Apr - 30 Apr 2006
01 May - 31 May 2006
01 Jun - 30 Jun 2006
01 Jul - 31 Jul 2006
01 Aug - 31 Aug 2006
01 Sep - 30 Sep 2006
01 Oct - 31 Oct 2006
01 Nov - 30 Nov 2006
01 Dec - 31 Dec 2006
01 Jan - 31 Jan 2007
01 Feb - 28 Feb 2007
01 Mar - 31 Mar 2007
01 Apr - 30 Apr 2007
01 May - 31 May 2007
01 Jun - 30 Jun 2007
01 Jul - 31 Jul 2007
01 Aug - 31 Aug 2007

Older Archives

1 Aug.-18 Aug. 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
1 Apr.-16 Apr. 2003
30 Mar.-5 Apr. 2003
17 Mar.-29 Mar. 2003
10 Mar.-16 Mar. 2003
9 Mar.-15 Mar. 2003
2 Mar.-8 Mar. 2003
23 Feb.-1 Mar. 2003
19 Feb.-22 Feb. 2003



Powered by Pivot - 1.40.1: 'Dreadwind' 
XML: RSS Feed 
XML: Atom Feed 

Listed on Blogwise

Blog Flux Directory

Blogarama - The Blog Directory

Countdown Creations, your space superstore!

eXTReMe Tracker Science Blogs - Blog Top Sites

My Profile

Name: David Hitt
About Me: Inspiring the next generation of explorers...
See my complete profile

Last Referrers


Time remaining until the STS-118 launch of Endeavour:


The "All These Worlds" Space Blog is maintained by David Hitt. Be sure to check out the full blog.

Last Comments

Joe (Waning Opportunit…): They should have put litt…
David (Grounded Virgin): WIRED: It’s the private r…
David (Today In History): Yeah, boy, the iPhone cha…
Willer (Today In History): Well you could call me an…
David (Today In History): Did you get your Blackber…
Willer (Today In History): I check by about every da…
Joseph Gurner (Diem Horribilis): What? Reporters assuming …
David (Diem Horribilis): Actually, though, it appe…
Joseph Gurner (Diem Horribilis): I hadn’t heard about the …
David (Today In History): Oh, yeah, forgot that you…

Space Blogs

Why Homeschool
Space Politics
Cosmic Log
Auxiliary Umbilicus

Aerospace Events

July or August

? -- SpaceShipTwo Unveiling


8/4 -- Mars Phoenix launch
NET 8/7 -- STS-118 launch


? -- Dawn launch


10/6 -- Exp. 16 Soyuz launch
NET 10/20 -- STS-120 launch
? -- Falcon I launch


NET 12/6 -- STS-122 launch


? -- Jules Verne ATV launch


NET 2/14 -- STS-123 launch


NET 4/24 -- STS-124 launch


NET 7/10 -- STS-119 launch


? -- Dragon I launch

NET 9/10 -- STS-125 launch


10/9 -- STS-126 launch
? -- LRO launch

Unknown 2008

? -- SpaceShipTwo test flight


NET 1/15 -- STS-127 launch


? -- Japanese HTV-1 launch


? -- Ares I-X launch
NET 4/9 -- STS-128 launch


NET 7/9 -- STS-129 launch


NET 9/30 -- STS-130 launch


? -- Silver Dart orbital test flight

Unknown 2009

Mid-year -- Silver Dart flight
Fall -- Mars Science Lab launch
? -- DreamChaser suborbital flight
? -- Rocketplane XP first flight


NET 4/1 -- STS-132 launch


? -- Ares I-Y launch

Other Missions
STS-131STS-133Shenzhou VIIShenzhou IXShenzhou X
All dates subject to change.


Space News

Spaceflight Now
Martian Soil
Space Buffs
Space Daily
Saturn V Renovation

Think Different

In honor of the STS-107 crew of the Space Shuttle Columbia

Microsoft: Embrace Mediocrity

Hatbag button

Hatbag Productions logo


More Space Blogs

| ATW Full Blog | About David | Contact | ATW Theme Song | |

31 May 2007

+ 2 - 1 | § Once In A Blue Moon

the moonSo, yeah, there's a blue moon tonight.

Just so you know.

Keywords: astronomy,moon

30 May 2007

+ 1 - 3 | § Going Out For A Walk

YurchikhinThe two cosmonauts on the International Space Station will venture outside today for a spacewalk to install debris protection panels on the station's exterior. The spacewalk will begin around 1:20 CDT, will last about six hours and will almost certainly be covered by NASA TV.

Keywords: apple,international_space_station,space,steve_jobs

+ 4 - 0 | § Strange New Worlds

exoplanet artworkPer UC-Berkeley:
The world's largest and most prolific team of planet hunters announced Monday, May 28, the discovery of 28 new planets outside our solar system, increasing to 236 the total number of known exoplanets.
Wright said the research teams have become much more sophisticated in their analyses of the stellar wobbles caused by orbiting planets, enabling them to detect the weaker wobbles caused by smaller planets as well as planets farther from their parent stars.

"We've added 12 percent to the total in the last year, and we're very proud of that," said Wright of the 28 new exoplanets. "This provides new planetary systems so that we can study their properties as an ensemble."

Keywords: astronomy,planets,space

09 May 2007

+ 2 - 0 | § STS-117 Update

U.S. Air Force Thunderbird F-16 jets fly in formation past the Vehicle Assembly Building in the Industrial Area of Kennedy Space Center. The purpose of the flyover was to photograph the planes at KSC for promotional purposes.Photo by Kennedy Space Center

OK, that picture has nothing to do with STS-117, other than the fact that it shows the VAB, where preparations are currently underway to get the shuttle ready for roll-out, expected to take place next week.

Anyway, this update is just to point out that as of today, it's currently one month until the scheduled STS-117 launch of Atlantis.

Keywords: ksc,launch_schedule,nasa,space,space_shuttle,sts_117,vab

05 May 2007

+ 1 - 2 | § Today In History

Freedom 7

On this date in 1961, the era of American human spaceflight began.

Keywords: history,mercury,nasa,space

04 May 2007

+ 3 - 1 | § Gordo's Final Flight Update

SL-2 launchWhoops.

After the weekend's SpaceLoft's SL-2 suborbital spaceflight, the rocket's payload, including the ashes of Mercury astronaut Gordon Cooper and Star Trek actor James Doohan, can't be found.
There is hope nearly a week later of finding the rocket’s payload of ashes and experiments.

Word from Jerry Larson, President of the rocket group, is that recovery of the payload has been slowed by rough, dense terrain and windy conditions in the mountains 30 miles away from Spaceport America and within the White Sands Missile Range.

The SpaceLoft XL booster was successfully located earlier on the side of a mountain, but the helicopter crew could not find the rocket’s payload...

Larson has advised me that analysis of White Sands Missile Range radar skin track data revealed both the payload and booster had reentered Earth’s atmosphere under drogue parachutes as planned. That same data further pinpointed where the payload is, he noted.
The ashes had originally been going to fly on the second flight of SpaceX's Falcon I. As it turns out, despite delays in the Falcon program, that flight still launched first, and, while it ended up being unintentionally suborbital, I tend to think at the moment that burning up on re-entry might have been a more fitting end that being misplaced. (I'll hasten to add, though, that this is just my impression from the handful of stories I've read -- there may be other things going on I'm unaware of.)

Keywords: altspace,mercury,space,star_trek

03 May 2007

+ 2 - 1 | § Godspeed, Skyray!

wally schirra portrait

Wally Schirra, the third American to orbit the Earth, the only man to fly on Mercury, Gemini and Apollo missions, has died.

Schirra named the spacecraft for his six-orbit Mercury mission "Sigma 7" to recognize the contributions of all those whose work made the flight possible. (Using the engineering/mathematics "sum" meaning of Sigma.)

His Gemini 6A mission would make history as part of the first rendezvous between two manned spacecraft, 6A and Gemini 7. His pilot's instincts kept the mission from being historic in a tragic way -- when the Titan launch vehicle shut down on the pad, Schirra refused to use the ejection seats, which could well have killed the two cremembers.

In 1966, Schirra was assigned to Apollo 2, a planned second validation flight of the new three-person spacecraft. When that mission was cancelled, he and his crewmates became the back-up for the Apollo 1 crew. When a fire claimed the lives of the Apollo 1 crew, Schirra was tapped to command the first flight of the retooled Apollo; now Apollo 7.

Especially after the flight of John Glenn on STS-95, Schirra was asked if he would ever want to complete his series by flying on the shuttle. He would reply that, unlike Glenn, he had no desire to ride as a passenger, and didn't have the time to train to command a shuttle flight.

Schirra was the first of The Seven that I met, and the only one that I've had a conversation (albeit brief) with. On one of the occasions I saw him, he was speaking here at Marshall. He was a fascinating speaker, and his famed sense of humor was fully on display.

The first time I met him was at a symposium at the Naval air museum in Pensacola. I had only been working at Marshall for a few months, so he was probably in the first dozen astronauts I ever talked to. At the time, we were working on a series of astronaut profiles for the NASAexplores Web site, and so I approached him about whether he would be willing to let me get in touch with him later for an interview.

Schirra, of course, had no idea who this guy approaching him was, and likely got many requests like that, so is trying to politely decline, although I didn't realize that at the time. So he says the best way to get the information would be the internet, but he says it in such a way that I'm thinking he means I should contact him online. I have no idea how, and, probably seeing my confusion, he asks if I know how to do that.

I reply, no, thinking he's about to give me his e-mail address or Web URL or something. Instead, he begins explaining search engines to me.

And that's my story of how a Mercury astronaut taught me to use Google. Sort of.

To be honest, I just learned his death literally a minute or two before beginning to write this. I had gone to the NASA homepage to look something else up, and was shocked to see his picture, with "1923-2007" by his name. I wanted to write something, but didn't have anything good, so wrote this.

A huge loss. Truly.

Godspeed, Wally!

Keywords: history,mercury,nasa

+ 4 - 0 | § Boosters Derailed

train photo
Photo by

Officials from NASA and ATK Launch Systems, Edina, Minn., are assisting the Federal Railroad Administration during its investigation of a train derailment Wednesday morning near Pennington, Ala. The train was carrying space shuttle reusable solid rocket motor segments from the ATK Launch Systems manufacturing site in Brigham City, Utah, to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Fla.

"Several members of the NASA family were injured in this serious accident. Today our prayers are for those who have been injured and their families. Our employees work in hazardous jobs every day, and it is our goal to keep them safe," said NASA's Space Shuttle Program Manager Wayne Hale.

The special train carrying only solid rocket motor segments and a passenger car to monitor their transportation was crossing a bridge or a trestle, which collapsed under the locomotives. Six people were injured when the two locomotives and the passenger car dropped about 10 feet and turned on their sides.

One of the cars carrying a solid rocket motor segment is also on its side. The remaining cars containing seven solid rocket motor segments and two aft exit cone segments are upright.

The hardware was intended for use on shuttle Discovery's STS-120 mission in October and shuttle Atlantis's STS-122 mission in December. These segments are interchangeable, and ATK Launch Systems has replacement units that could be used for the shuttle flights, if necessary.

Each segment weighs approximately 300,000 lbs. and is protected by a white or yellow colored fiberglass cover during shipment. The condition of the rocket motor segments will be assessed as soon as teams conduct a full inspection. Solid Rocket Motor segments have been transported across country by rail for more than 26 years with an excellent record of safe transportation.

Notes The Demopolis Times: "It was the second time in less than a week that the train jumped the tracks while carrying the booster segments across the country from the manufacturer, ATK Launch Systems Group of Promontory, Utah, to Cape Canaveral, Fla., Herring said.

Last Friday, two axles on one car came off the tracks for unknown reasons about 60 miles west of Salina, Kan., while the train was traveling at less than 20 mph, Herring said. The train was back on the tracks after several hours, the spokesman said."

Keywords: nasa,sts_120,sts_122

02 May 2007

+ 2 - 1 | § Second Space

second life screenshot

From Cosmic Log:
"Can anyone tell me what is the rocket equation?" the teacher asks. "That's a hard one," one of the students says. Then the teacher starts giving hints: "I use force to power my rockets. Force depends on the mass of the rocket."

Finally, another student types out the answer: "Thrust equals dM/dt (-vrel)."

I can already tell that I'm out of my depth. Thank goodness that most of the class time is taken up in rocket rides, launch-pad tours - and levitating from one cool spaceship to another. Levitating is the easiest way to go on a class field trip when you're in the virtual world known as Second Life.

During today's first class, Second Life's most prolific rocket-builder showed us many of his computer-generated creations - including a space shuttle taking shape at his secret hangar - and taught us a little real-life rocket science along the way.

I've never used/played/visited/whatever Second Life, but I've been really fascinated by things I've read about the virtual spaceflight community there.

Keywords: second_life,space,virtual_reality