Monday in Houston

We started out the day on Monday making all of the final adjustments to our experiment.  We added padding to the outside, added Velcro to hold everything down, and ran through the software.Picture 002

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After a group photo in front of the plane, we had our Test Readiness Review.  I gave a quick presentation on our experiment to a panel of 20 engineers.  Weighed our experiments and loaded them onto the airplane.  The cargo hold was padded everywhere with seats in the very back.  Our glove box was bolted to the floor of the plane which is a C9 which is a modified Boeing 727.   Here is the C9 which NASA owns,

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but we are flying on the Zero G Airplane Ride. This plane is not owned by NASA but by a private contractor. You can buy your own ride on the Zero G for $5000.  New glitch.  As I tested our our FlipCam… didn’t work.

After loading our experiments

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we received our flight suits and learned move about the anti-motion sickness.  We finished the day a bit early.  So I went exploring and bought a new Flip Cam at Best Buy.  I also went to the mall and bought a Boston Bruins cap.

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That night we went to the Mission debriefing for STS-134.  This was the highlight of the entire trip.  It was held in the IMAX theator in Space Center Houston.  After a loooong line to get in (full of NASA families of the astronauts, flight crew, engineers, and NASA fans) we found choice seats.  Everyone stood up and cheered when Gabrielle Giffords came in smiling.  Commander Mark Kelly helped to pass out the awards to all of the NASA engineers who worked on the instruments for the flight.  The Astronauts from the flight also received their Flight Medals and showed pictures and a video from the flight.  The primary instrument they installed on the International Space Station was the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer.  The AMS will detect cosmic rays and help search for antimatter and dark matter in the universe. Another interesting thing is that the shuttle left their robotic boom arm on the ISS. They tested some equipment for the Orion space program.

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