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STS-113 Mission -- Day One
Question Board

Junichi Maki from Niihama, Japan
When I was watching NASA-TV broadcasting Soyuz docking with ISS, I wondered what language do they use on the ISS? Can Russian cosmonauts speak English?
Mark from Chicago
How does the orbiter get mounted on the flatbed orbiter transporter, and how long does it take to do this?
Joshua from Statesville
How many workers are there at the OPF?
John L. from Santa Barbara
What is the life expectancy of #1 or #2 crawler?
Scott from Melbourne
Why does it take so long to get shuttles ready for a launch?
Jeff from Hopkinsville
The tiles and thermal blankets are glued to the orbiter, right? The glue used has to be really strong to stand up to the aero pressures that are put on the vehicle during flight. So how do you remove a damaged tile or thermal blanket when it is damaged and must be replaced?
Miguel from Madrid
What is MECO? Thank you very much.
Emilio Pérez from Lugo, Spain
When the shuttle blasts off, why do you transfer the shuttle control to the Mission Control Center (Houston)?
Emilio Pérez from Lugo, Spain
Why will mission sts-113 blast off to an altitude about 122 nautical miles, when the ISS is in orbit about 400 kilometers?
Jon from Jacksonville
What is the purpose of the orange "bars" we sometimes see attached to the payload bay doors of the shuttle on the pad or in transit to the pad?
Emilio Pérez from Lugo, Spain
How much power do the two SRBs have? Thanks.
Nate from Florence
I was wondering what the time frame is for post landing processing of the orbiter before heading back for "overhaul"? For example, purging of lines of any gases, post flight checks of motors, etc. Thanks, a curious jet mechanic.
James Kelley from Cananduagia
How long does it take to retrieve the solid rocket boosters and get them ready for another launch?
Orion from Ninrveh
What are some of the activities that take place during turnaround, and can you give me a thorough explanation of the activities?
James from Millersport
What kind of fuel is used in the RCS and OMS Systems?
Joshua from Waldorf, Maryland
What is the current time table for shuttle Upgrades? With the new "Glass Cockpit" upgrade completed, what upgrade(s) are next for the shuttle fleet? Has NASA approached Congress about the possibility of upgrading the equipment in the Crawler-Transporters, or even about the possibility of constructing a brand new space shuttle using today's technologies and equipment? Finally, has NASA ever looked into or evaluated the possibility of using liquid-fuel boosters instead of the solid rocket boosters, similar to what the ill-fated Russian Buran shuttle used for a safer flight into space?
NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center