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Old 02-08-2010, 11:30 AM
 
196 posts, read 676,403 times
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this might be an odd question but why do they worry about a few clouds with all that power? I dont stop driving when there's a puddle
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Old 02-08-2010, 11:46 AM
 
3,215 posts, read 5,259,781 times
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Originally Posted by salmanalk View Post
this might be an odd question but why do they worry about a few clouds with all that power? I dont stop driving when there's a puddle

They have to be able to track it and possibly land it safely at one of the spots that they have for emergency landings around the world. Almost forgot. Yes, I got up at 4 to watch it from our yard here in South Brevard County. It was beautiful from our house and we could see it for so long. Rumble that we could hear from our house about 35 miles away was very short from this one, but we heard it several minutes after launch.
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Old 02-08-2010, 12:29 PM
 
222 posts, read 621,310 times
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Originally Posted by salmanalk View Post
this might be an odd question but why do they worry about a few clouds with all that power? I dont stop driving when there's a puddle

It is part of the weather launch commit criteria

KSC Release No. 49-98




"Range Safety Cloud Ceiling and Visibility constraints:
  • Direct visual observation of the Shuttle is required through 8,000 feet. This requirement may be satisfied using optical tracking sites or a forward observer
  • For cloud ceilings of any thickness between 6,000 feet and 8,000 feet the following conditions must be met for launch to occur:
    a.) the vehicle integrity can be observed without interruption through 6,000 feet.
    b.) all required Range Safety instrumentation is functioning properly
    c.) the U.S. Air Force 45th Space Wing Commander approves the decision to proceed
  • For cloud ceilings between 4,000 feet and 6,000 feet the following conditions must be met for launch to proceed:
    a.) the thickness of the clouds must be less than 500 feet
    b.) the vehicle integrity can be monitored by the Eastern Range airborne and/or the ground forward observers through 8,000 feet
    c.) all required Range Safety instrumentation is functioning properly
    d.) the U.S. Air Force 45th Space Wing Commander approves the decision to proceed
A "Good Sense Rule" is in effect for launch which states: "Even when constraints are not violated, if any other hazardous conditions exist, the launch weather officer will report the threat to the launch director. The launch director may hold at any time based on the instability of the weather." "
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