[meteorite-list] STS Astronaut James Reilly on micrometeorite damage
From: MARK BOSTICK <thebigcollector_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Fri Aug 13 11:38:48 2004
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Dr. James F. Reilly was selected as a NASA astronaut in December 1994 Since
that time he has flown twice STS-89 in 1998 and on STS-104 in 2001. Reilly
has logged over 517 hours in space, including 3 spacewalks (STS-104)
totaling 16 hours and 30 minutes. Reilly was assigned to the crew of
STS-117, which was scheduled to fly in the fall of 2003. This flight has
since been delayed.
STS-89 (12th flight of Space Shuttle "Endeavour", January 22-31, 1998) was
the eighth Shuttle-Mir docking mission during which the crew transferred
more than 9,000 pounds of scientific equipment, logistical hardware and
water from Space Shuttle Endeavour to Mir. In the fifth and last exchange of
a U.S. astronaut, STS-89 delivered Andy Thomas to Mir and returned with
David Wolf. Mission duration was 8 days, 19 hours and 47 seconds, traveling
3.6 million miles in 138 orbits of the Earth.
STS-104 (24th flight of Space Shuttle "Atlantis", July 12-24, 2001) was the
ninth assembly flight of the Shuttle to the International Space Station
(ISS). Flight 7A delivered and installed the joint airlock module to
complete the second phase of ISS assembly. Three EVAs were conducted during
the mission with the third being the inaugural spacewalk from the joint
airlock. Mission duration was 12 days, 18 hours and 35 minutes traveling 5.3
million miles in 200 orbits of the Earth.
STS-117: Flight delayed after the Columbia disaster. STS-117 was to have
flown ISS Assembly mission ISS-13A. It would have delivered the second
right-side truss segment (ITS S3/S4) and a solar array set and batteries.
The crew would have attached the S3/S4 Truss to the first starboard truss,
the S1, along with the third set of solar arrays. They then would have
delivered four external attachment sites for truss-mounted exterior
experiments and research; activated and checked out the S4 Truss Solar Alpha
Rotary Joint (SARJ); deployed the channel 1A and 3A solar arrays;
reconfigured the station power supply; and retracted the P6 Truss Channel 2B
(starboard) solar arra
Mark: Did any meteorite damage happen during any of the the STS flights you
James Reilly: No reported damage on either flight. There was, however, a
hole in one of the solar panels on MIR that was thought to be meteor -
Mark: It is my understanding that micrometeorites form little craters when
impacting the ship. Have you ever felt any of these impacts and did you see
any damage on the craft after you landed?
James Reilly: During that same missions, STS-89, I did hear what sounded
like an impact to the hull of Space Hab. But never heard any reports of
strikes. Most meteorite material as you know, is quite small so they
generally don't penetrate the insulation.
Mark: Is there any special tools NASA sends with astronauts, or special
training you where given in the case a meteorite should strike and heavily
damage a craft while in use?
James Reilly: As for tools, we are working now on materials & techniques for
tile and leading edge repair that could repair damage due to meteor strikes.
So far, so significant damage or need.
STS-89, 104, 117
Received on Fri 13 Aug 2004 11:36:21 AM PDT