WBEZ | Atlantis http://www.wbez.org/tags/atlantis Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Space explorers look to infinity and beyond after final space shuttle mission http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-07-22/space-explorers-look-infinity-and-beyond-after-final-space-shuttle-missi <p><p>The tallest building will never reach the skies quite like the space shuttles did. For 30 years the U.S. space shuttle program launched Americans into orbit. When Atlantis touched down Thursday, it punctuated a great chapter of space exploration.The shuttles kept many looking up at the sky but now, it's time to look to the future – or so says the <a href="http://www.adlerplanetarium.org/" target="_blank">Adler Planetarium</a>’s Michelle Nichols-Yehling.</p><p><em>Live Music Button: DJ Matt Warren spins Kid Cudi's "Enter Galactic" with live violin accompaniment by Katarina Visnevska</em></p><br> <p><br> &nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 22 Jul 2011 14:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-07-22/space-explorers-look-infinity-and-beyond-after-final-space-shuttle-missi NASA, Atlantis blast off into history, new era with final shuttle mission http://www.wbez.org/story/nasa-atlantis-blast-history-new-era-final-shuttle-mission-88888 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//story/photo/2011-July/2011-07-08/Fans Atlantis lift off_Reuters_Scott Audette.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Space shuttle Atlantis thundered off its seaside launch pad Friday, rising atop a tower of smoke and flames as it left Earth on the final flight of the U.S. <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2FgenericHasher-1%2Fc1ff2a3d-18d0-359a-a0a8-cd6ce20bf2c0&amp;display=space%20shuttle%20program">space shuttle program</a>.</p><p>About 1 million sightseers lined causeways and beaches around the <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2FgenericHasher-1%2F1c36125b-1297-3824-a440-da0bd3718629&amp;display=Kennedy%20Space%20Center">Kennedy Space Center</a> in central <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2Fer%2Fgeo%2Fprovinceorstate%2Fralg-geo1%2Fead8a759-31d2-262c-540f-e93fc56b22eb&amp;display=Florida">Florida</a>, angling for a last glimpse of the iconic ship that has defined the U.S. space program for the last 30 years.</p><p>They were nearly disappointed, as cloudy skies and nearby rain threatened to delay Atlantis' launch on a 12-day mission to the <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2FgenericHasher-1%2F2182d754-74be-3657-ae06-26abcb1647c5&amp;display=International%20Space%20Station">International Space Station</a>.</p><p>Skies cleared in time for liftoff, which was delayed for about three minutes by a last-minute technical glitch. It went ahead at 11:29 a.m. EDT.</p><p>The ship's cargo of food and equipment is intended to bridge the gap until newly hired commercial freighters are ready to fly supply runs to the station.</p><p>The shuttle and its four-member veteran crew are scheduled to arrive at the station, a recently completed orbital research outpost, on Sunday.</p><p>Here are highlights of Atlantis' 32nd flight:</p><p>* The shuttle's primary payload is an Italian-built cargo hauler named Raffaello which is loaded with 8,640 pounds of food, clothing, supplies and science equipment for the space station. Additional gear is packed in the shuttle's crew cabin.</p><p>* One spacewalk is planned during <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2FgenericHasher-1%2F6dafe04e-26e1-3f10-94b9-4038e4205dbf&amp;display=Atlantis%27%20mission">Atlantis' mission</a>, though it will be conducted by NASA's two resident space station astronauts, rather than the shuttle crew.</p><p>* Only four astronauts will fly on the shuttle, instead of the usual six or seven, to accommodate the smaller Russian capsules the crew would use if Atlantis was too damaged to return to Earth. NASA has no more shuttles to mount a rescue mission.</p><p>* The shuttle carries a technology demonstration project to test how a robot can refuel and service satellites in orbit. The two-year experiment, using the station's Dextre robot, will begin after the shuttle leaves.</p><p>* Among the tons of old equipment and trash coming back from the station on the shuttle is a broken ammonia cooling system. Engineers want to take it apart and figure out why it failed.</p><p>* Atlantis is the last of NASA's three space shuttles to be retired. After its mission, it will go on display at the <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2FgenericHasher-1%2F1c36125b-1297-3824-a440-da0bd3718629&amp;display=Kennedy%20Space%20Center">Kennedy Space Center</a>'s Visitors Complex in <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2Fer%2Fgeo%2Fprovinceorstate%2Fralg-geo1%2Fead8a759-31d2-262c-540f-e93fc56b22eb&amp;display=Florida">Florida</a>.</p><p>NASA is ending the shuttle program due to high operating costs.</p><p>Instead, the <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2Fer%2Fgeo%2Fcountry%2Fralg-geo1%2F152649df-347e-e289-1a9e-acc883e07d17&amp;display=United%20States">United States</a> will rely on <a class="cite" id="/controller/search.action?type=entity&amp;entityId=http%3A%2F%2Fd.opencalais.com%2Fer%2Fgeo%2Fcountry%2Fralg-geo1%2F1c625cc8-6f82-4660-a320-d185916e3c55&amp;display=Russia">Russia</a> to fly its astronauts to the station, at a cost of more than $50 million a seat, until commercial firms are ready to take over the work.</p><p>The U.S. space agency also plans to develop spaceships that can travel beyond the space station's 220-mile orbit where the shuttles cannot go.</p><p>(Editing by Tom Brown, Kevin Gray and Cynthia Osterman)</p></p> Fri, 08 Jul 2011 16:13:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/nasa-atlantis-blast-history-new-era-final-shuttle-mission-88888 A NASA space shuttle may find a new home at Adler Planetarium http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-03-22/nasa-space-shuttle-may-find-new-home-adler-planetarium-84068 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//segment/photo/2011-March/2011-03-22/Adler Flickr Caribb.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>More than 20 museums across America are competing to house one of two retired shuttles from NASA&rsquo;s fleet. Discovery is thought to be heading to the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. That just leaves Atlantis and Endeavour.<br /><br />Among the competitors are the <a href="http://www.kennedyspacecenter.com/" target="_blank">Kennedy Space Center</a>, <a href="http://www.museumofflight.org/" target="_blank">Seattle&rsquo;s Museum of Flight</a> and Chicago&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.adlerplanetarium.org/educate?gclid=CPyCk5Kl4qcCFQprKgodnxc1_w" target="_blank">Adler Planetarium</a>. <em>Eight Forty-Eight</em> spoke with Dr. Marvin Bolt, Vice President for Collections at the Adler, to find out why the Alder wants a Shuttle, and why he thinks it should get one.</p></p> Tue, 22 Mar 2011 12:31:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-03-22/nasa-space-shuttle-may-find-new-home-adler-planetarium-84068