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John F. Kennedy Space Center Americas gateway to the universe Spaceport News www.nasa.gov/centers/kennedy/news/snews/spnews_toc.html Oct. 31, 2008 Vol. 48, No. 22 Inside this issue . Page 2 IBEX begins mission Page 3 Page 6 Kennedy visitors watch as space shuttle Endeavour moves away from Launch Pad 39B and turns toward Launch Pad 39A on Oct. 23. Endeavour is targeted to launch Nov. 14 on the STS-126 mission to the International Space Station. On Oct. 23, space shut tle Endeavour took center stage as it moved from Ken nedy Space Centers Launch Pad 39B to Launch Pad 39A on the crawler-transporter -a journey that took about eight hours and covered a distance of 3.4 miles. For more than a month, Endeavour stood stately on Pad B while Atlantis occu pied Pad A for its STS-125 mission to service NASAs Hubble Space Telescope. Endeavour was prepared as Atlantis rescue mission and for its STS-126 mission to the International Space Station. After a technical prob lem on Hubble delayed the servicing mission, Atlantis and its payload returned to Kennedys Vehicle Assem bly Building, making way for Endeavours move to the centers primary launch site. Its a very rare set of circumstances, said Ken for Endeavour. By rolling around (to Pad A), that al lows the Ares and Constella cations they need to do for their launch. Endeavour originally was scheduled to move to its next seaside launch pad Oct. 25, but a stormy weekend forecast prompted NASA mission managers to rol laround a few days early. The Multi-Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo, already inside the payload changeout room at Pad A, was moved into the shut tles payload bay Oct. 26. Leonardo, considered one of NASAs three moving vans, is jam-packed with about 19,000 pounds of equipment and supplies -one of the heaviest modules in shuttle history. Endeavour also will deliver additional sleeping quarters, a second toilet, an exercise device and other household-type equipment to the orbiting outpost, which is all necessary to enable the station to ac commodate a larger crew, starting in spring 2009. smooth, even though we were processing both vehicles at the same time, Tenbusch said. The team has done a superior effort a vehicle thats going to be exciting. During the 15-day mis sion the STS-126 astronauts have an ambitious work schedule ahead of them. Highlighting the four spacewalks will be the servicing of two Solar Alpha Rotary Joints, or SARJ, which allow the stations solar arrays to track the sun and supply the station with electrical power. Theyve been providing limited use since Sept. 2007. Commander Chris Fer guson heads-up the STS-126 mission; the other crew members include, Pilot Eric Boe and Mission See Page 8 Trip from Pad 39B to Pad 39A covers 3.4 miles in eight hours By Elaine M. Marconi Spaceport News Page 7
Page 2 SPACEPORT NEWS Oct. 31, 2008 From their consoles in the Mission Directors Center at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, launch video. The Telemetry and Communications Group provides data, voice, video and telemetry for NASA launches around the globe -even as far away as Alaska and the Marshall Islands. NASA By Anna Heiney Spaceport News T he mandate of NASAs Launch Services Program is to be able to launch any vehicle, anytime, from anywhere in the world. The program lives up to this goal year after year, mission after mis sion. But the launch of the Interstel lar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, spacecraft aboard an Orbital Sciences Pegasus rocket put the programs mo bility to the test. Thats because IBEX launched from the Reagan Test Site on Kwajalein Atoll, part the Marshall Is of miles away from the programs home base at NASAs Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Before the launch managers and controllers sat down at their consoles and put on their headsets on launch day, the Telemetry and Communica tions Group had to arrange for data, voice and video, and get the consoles mobile system, said Eric Anderson, who leads the group as chief of the programs Ground Systems Integration Branch. Standing in the plush Mission Directors Center at Cape Canaveral Air Force Stations Hangar AE, he gestured at rows of polished wood con soles housing slick computer displays. here on a desk out at Kwajalein. In stead of a comfortable console, youre sitting in front of a laptop computer with extra displays, but the capability is all there. The Launch Services Program uses two primary launch sites: Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and Van denberg Air Force Base in California. But mission requirements occa sionally call for launches from other sites, such as Kodiak Island in hat does it take to prepare NASAs Interstellar Boundary Explorer, or IBEX, mission spacecraft and launch vehicle? John Calvert, Launch Services Program mis sion manager for IBEX at Kennedy Space Center, knows. Calvert heads up a diverse team of engineers, analysts and business professionals, who work to make sure the IBEX spacecraft, managed by NASAs Goddard Space Flight Center, Pegasus rocket and launch site were ready to go. The IBEX -often compared to the size of a bus tire -was the heaviest ever launched off a Pegasus rocket. Also, this was only the third Pegasus launch from the Kwajalein Atolls Rea Its a unique launch site we dont go to every day, Calvert said. To add to the many logistical challenges, as late as spring of 2008, Calverts team realized that IBEX wasnt designed to withstand the previ ously predicted load pressure during launch. This revelation called for a shock-absorber type of system to be included in the launch stack to protect the sensitive IBEX equipment from the harsh launch environment. Designing, building, testing and analyzing the upgrades pushed the summer launch to Oct. 19. Also complicating launch plans, IBEX could so scheduling around other missions wasnt easy. The monumental task of getting the launch team assembled, packing up all the necessary equipment and safely transporting IBEX to the launch site half-a-world away was at hand. Every piece of equipment had to be tested and securely packed for transport. Theres not a spare parts store on Kwajalein waiting to supply us with anything we need or may have forgotten, Calvert said. Calvert and his team traveled to Vandenberg Air Force Base in California several weeks early to test the equipment before heading out to Kwajalein. In early October, IBEX, also built by Orbital Sciences Corp., was integrated with the Pegasus XL rocket at Orbitals facilities at Vandenberg. Pegasus was then installed to the underside of Virginia, and Kwajalein. end-to-end support for spacecraft and launch vehicle customers, as well as the program itself, by ensuring all par ties have the necessary data, voice and video communications to accomplish all pre-launch and launch-day opera tions. Examples include, transmitting data between the launch site and the spacecrafts mission operations center during pre-launch testing, setting up and recording and displaying vehicle and spacecraft telemetry during liftoff and ascent. The Telemetry and Communica tions Group began planning for IBEX in fall 2007, almost a year in advance. launch facility in January 2008 and the group successfully completed a full test in March. The IBEX launch introduced a new set of logistical challenges to the teams usual preparations, from arrang ing for satellite coverage to negotiating an eight-hour time difference. jalein, Vandenberg and Kennedy -and well have them all tied in through satellite, Anderson said. It will be the at once for one launch. Another unique feature of the Launch Services Programs ground system is its ability to process and dis play data for multiple launch vehicles simultaneously. Although no more than four vehicles are typically monitored at a given time, every console could be set to monitor a different vehicle. Next year is going to be exceptionally busy, Anderson said, referring to the number of launches on the schedule, including several from Vandenberg. Its going to be quite interesting coming up. unique, Calvert said proudly, Its a small mis sion -its like the little engine that could -a small spacecraft doing big work. Calvert and his dedicated team worked around-the-clock for more than two years to make this mission a success. IBEX will be stationed 200,000 miles above Earth -above the region of space controlled by which can interfere with observations. There, IBEXs instruments will have an unobstructed capture the energetic interactions of hot solar wind colliding with the cold expanse of space. According to David McComas, IBEX prin cipal investigator from the Southwest Research Institute, knowing more about the interstellar boundary regions is important because it shields the Earth from the majority of dangerous galactic cosmic rays, which otherwise would penetrate much more dangerous. Its clear that NASAs IBEX mission is an enormous undertaking by a diminutive, but exceptional spacecraft. By Elaine M. Marconi Spaceport News
SPACEPORT NEWS Page 3 Oct. 31, 2008 C harlie Blackwell-Thompson is preparing for the role of a lifetime. As space shuttle Endeavours STS-126 mission nears the T-minus-zero mark for liftoff, an to serve as NASA test director, or NTD, during launch. It is a great honor to serve as the STS-126 launch NTD, Black well-Thompson said. It will be extremely exciting to sit in Launch Control Center Firing Room 4 when the space shuttle lifts off from the pad. I feel a closeness to Endeavour and her upcoming mission. To prepare, Blackwell-Thomp son spent the last four missions as the assistant NTD. In the weeks prior to launch, she will review launch procedures, as well as launch countdown schedules and plans. During launch countdown, she will ensure work is complete and all constraints are resolved. The best part of the job is working with great people and see ing the creativity of a team when an issue or problem arises, BlackwellThompson said. many times, serving in various capacities. In 1988, BlackwellThompson came to Kennedy Space software engineer for McDonnell Douglas, which was later acquired by Boeing. She sat at the C-1 console in Firing Rooms 1, 3 and 4 during the test, checkout and launch of pay loads on several missions, including the launch of NASAs Hubble Space Telescope and subsequent servicing missions. Blackwell-Thompson moved to NASA in 2004, joining the Launch and Landing Division in the Space Shuttle Processing Directorate. She participated in rotational assign ments and was a vehicle processing engineer in the Orbiter Processing Facility assigned to Endeavour. Since she joined the Launch years ago, Blackwell-Thompson has consistently been an outstanding leader, Division Chief Pete Nicko lenko said. Shes fully trained and ready to perform this critical launch role, and were all thrilled to have her lead this team. Blackwell-Thompson remem after its orbiter maintenance down period. It was so exciting to see the orbiter come to life after all Now, to be part of the team that will send Endeavour on her way to the International Space Station is even more thrilling. Things work out the way theyre supposed to, BlackwellThompson said. My story is not very different from others here at Kennedy. The mother of three credits three women for teaching her to balance priorities. Her grandmother taught her the importance of family and family time, her mother encour aged her to always dream big and work hard, and her aunt reminded her to not sweat the small stuff. with a lot to look forward to in the coming year, Blackwell-Thompson Hubble Space Telescope and restor ing it to its full capabilities. The space shuttle has been such a work-horse for us. Im proud to be part of the space program, she said. Its also going to be very exciting to see the Ares 1-X launch vehicle on the pad next year. Blackwell-Thompsons husband, Richard, works in the electrical division of Kennedys En gineering Directorate and supports the Launch Services Program. They have two sons, Matt, 15, and Cody, 12, and a daughter, Lhotse, 8. By Linda Herridge Spaceport News Charlie Blackwell-Thompson spent the past four missions as assistant NASA test director to prepare her for the role of NASA test director for the upcoming STS-126 mission targeted for Nov. 14. NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis S pace exploration took another leap for the stars during a groundbreaking ceremony at historic Launch Complex 36 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Oct. 22. The event marked the U.S. the site to Space Florida for con struction of a launch pad that will accommodate light-to-medium lift vertical launches. Digging in with shovels to symbolically help break ground for a new launch pad that will sup port commercial, civil and military launches, were Florida Gov. Char lie Crist, Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, Brig. Gen. Susan Helms and Space Florida President Steve Kohler. Shelton, commander of the 14th Air Force, and Space Florida Board Member Maj. Gen. Lloyd Newton. Brig. Gen. Helms said CCAFS was and will continue to have a criti cal importance to Americas access to space. Its a thrilling business, a new era of space exploration. Helms handed the 45th Space By Linda Herridge Spaceport News From left, Brig. Gen. Susan Helms, Lt. Gov. Jeff Kottkamp, Gov. Charlie Crist, Lt. Gen. William Shelton, Steve Kohler and Maj. Gen. Lloyd Newton, ceremoniously break ground for Launch Complex 36 on Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on Oct. 22. NASA/Jim Grossman See Page 8
Page 4 SPACEPORT NEWS Oct. 31, 2008 Page 5 SPACEPORT NEWS Oct. 31, 2008 Spaceman was among business leaders interested in learning more about government contracting and what local and national vendors have to offer at NASAs Small Business Expo 2008 on Oct. 21 at Cruise Terminal 3 at Port Canaveral. NASA/Amanda Diller Crew members for space shuttle Endeavours STS-126 mission arrived at the Shuttle Landing Facility on Oct. 26 for the Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test, or TCDT, activities. From left, are: Mission Specialists Shane Kimbrough and Steve Bowen, Pilot Eric Boe, Commander Chris Ferguson, and Mission Specialists Donald Pettit, Heidemarie On Launch Pad 39A, space shuttle Endeavours STS-126 mission payload is transferred from the payload canister into the Payload Changeout Room. The Multi-Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo was installed in Endeavours payload bay Oct. 26. Endeavour is targeted for launch on Nov. 14 to the International Space Station.
Page 5 SPACEPORT NEWS Oct. 31, 2008 Send photos of yourself and/or your co-workers in action for possible publication. Photos should include a short caption describing whats going on, with names and job titles, from left to right. Employees for the month of October are, from left, Craig Schreiber, Safety & Mission Assurance Directorate; Scott Koester, Launch Vehicle Processing Directorate; William J. Hill, Engineering Directorate; Frank Dodd, Information Technology & Communications Services; Susan Lambert, Launch Services Engineering Directorate; and James Miller, Center Operations. Not pictured are Jacqueline W. Quinn, Applied Technology Directorate and George C. Horanic, ISS & Spacecraft Processing Directorate. NASA Employees of United Space Alliance and Troutman Technical Services Inc. assist Launch Pad A Payload Changeout Room technicians and engineers as they put on their clean-room garments in the Garment Changeout Room. The Hubble payload requires extra clean-room controls that will ensure no contamination occurs to the delicate instruments. Reader-submitted photo On Launch Pad 39A, space shuttle Endeavours STS-126 mission payload is transferred from the payload canister into the Payload Changeout Room. The Multi-Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo was installed in Endeavours payload bay Oct. 26. Endeavour is targeted for launch on Nov. 14 to the International Space Station.
Page 6 SPACEPORT NEWS Oct. 31, 2008 A cross America, it seems as though everyone is talking about the future of health care, the environment, technol ogy, education and the economy -after all, we are in the midst of a presidential election. On Oct. 16, NASAs Advisory Council got to gether in Cocoa Beach to join in on the nation-wide discussion and make recommendations for the agencys future. know, is that NASA really dips its hand into everything from educating future rocket designers and locating environmental hazards to innovative technologies, such as hydrodynamic swimwear, and even changing the way we eat. Perhaps the most important issue the council talked about is the future economic state of NASAs Kennedy Space Center. The big task here is to manage a complex work force as you wind down the largest sustaining program that NASA has ever had down to zero over the next couple of years, Audit and Finance Committee Chair Robert Hanisee said. The council talked about the need for Kennedy to keep its highly skilled work force by cross training workers as the agency transitions from the Space Shuttle Program to the Constellation Program. Aeronautics Committee Chair Gen. Lester Lyles started the meeting with talks of developing green aircraft in collaboration with the Federal Aviation Administration and the Department of Transportation. The overall goal in the area of fuel, in addition to noise and emis sions, is to try to make a reduction of about 50 percent within the next 20 years or so, Lyles said. To reduce greenhouse-gas emis sions, NASA will look at developing new engine and airframe technolo gies, as well as implementing opera Science Committee Chair Dr. Jack Burns described America as be ing in the golden age of space sci ences, with many missions already in orbit and several more scheduled to take off next year. You may hear our community rumble and groan a little bit, on oc casion, but we also want to say how excited we are that NASA and the American taxpayer has provided for us to do this exciting science, Burns said. Perhaps the most fascinating space-science mission set to launch in 2009, is the Mars Science Lab -a rover that will carry an advanced suite of instruments to the Martian surface. This is a huge landing vehicle and rover. I mean this is not the Spirit and Opportunity that we think of -this is the size of a small bus -and its going to be tootling around Mars for some time, Burns said. Its a true science laboratory, as the name implies. Space Operations Committee Chair and former astronaut Col. Eileen Collins talked about the upcoming STS-126 mission and how the science experiments going up could affect healthcare and vaccines. NASA teamed up with SpaceHab Inc., the Department of Veteran Af fairs and various research institutes to study the costly and sometimesdeadly bacteria salmonella in space. Cells grow much faster in space and the mass transfer at the cellular level is different, Collins said. Human Capital Committee Chair Dr. Gerald Kulcinski touched on NASAs quest to align with the education community by inspiring, engaging and educating students. And most importantly, employing graduates of science, technology, engineering and mathematic disci plines. The council meets again in administration, a new budget and new goals for the future. T he Combined Federal Campaign, or CFC, at Kennedy Space Center began Oct. 9, but really hit the ground run ning Oct. 15 with a Kick-off Showcase. During the showcase, NASA civil servants met and talked with representa tives from several local and heard stories about how their generosity helps many in need. CFC Co-chairperson Christy Layton said the showcase helped spread the word to NASA employees about the important services their donations provide. The 2008 CFC runs through Nov. 7, with the slogan, One Small Gift One Gi ant Impact. Carol DeGarmo, the director of program outreach and development for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Cen tral Florida, said contribu tions from NASA workers help champion the mission to provide services to chil dren in this community. Jackie Hoskins is a volunteer for the American Cancer Society and a mem ber of the Relay for Life operating committee. Our goal is to edu cate people and make them aware of the Relay for Life events, Hoskins said. Con tributions from CFC go to ward programs and services, providing transportation and a 24-hour hotline for cancer patients. Marlene Squires, a vol unteer for the Community Services Council of Brevard County, said contributions By Linda Herridge Spaceport News Carol DeGarmo, left, and Molly Lovan, with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Florida, talked with Kennedy Space Center workers during the 2008 Combined Federal Campaign Kick-off Showcase on Oct. 15. NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis mean a great deal to the organization and the com munity. Donations help our kitchens provide meals for seniors and children, espe cially after hurricanes or other disasters, she said. 2-1-1 Brevard Inc., ALS Association, Ameri can Cancer Society, Arthritis Foundation, Au tism Speaks, Big Broth ers Big Sisters of Central Florida, Boy Scouts, Brevard County Legal Aid, Central Brevard Sharing Center, Child Care Association of Bre vard County, Childrens Tumor Foundation, Com munity Health Charities, Community Treatment Centers, Commu nity Services Council of Brevard County, Earth Share, Family Counsel ing Center of Brevard, Family Network on Disabilities of Florida, Hemophilia Foundation of Greater Florida, Prevent Blindness FL, Project Response, The Salvation Army, Serene Harbor, Sickle Cell Association of Brevard County Inc., Southeastern Guide Dogs, Space Coast Center for Independent Living, Hospice of St. Francis, Susan G. Komen for the Cure-Central Flor of Brevard and Wycliffe Bible Translators.
Page 7 SPACEPORT NEWS Oct. 31, 2008 Remembering Our Heritage By Kay Grinter Reference Librarian Discovery sits atop a 747 shuttle carrier aircraft after its arrival to Kennedy Space Center on Nov. 9. 1983. The two aircraft are entering the Mate-Demate Device for Discoverys tow to the Orbiter Processing Facility. Discovery is towed Dec. 9, 1983, to the Vehicle Assembly Building for temporary storage while Columbia was deserviced in the Orbiter Processing Facility after its STS-9 mission. K ennedy Space Center welcomed Discovery into the ago, as it touched down on the Shuttle Landing Facil Boeing 747 shuttle carrier aircraft. Plans to construct the new shuttle began in earnest when NASA announced in February 1979, that a con tract to build two additional space shuttle orbiters had been signed with Rockwell International Corporations space systems group. Discovery was the third shuttle intended for orbital duction line at Rockwells plant in Palmdale, Calif. Designated OV-103, its orbiter vehicle number, Discovery was the light est of the reusable vehicles manufactured. The primary difference between Discovery and its immediate predecessor, Challenger, was cosmetic. Engineers used a new type of thermal material called advanced felt reusable sur face insulation, or AFRSI, in place of most of the low-temperature white tiles and felt reusable surface insulation, or FRSI, which covered the upper portion of the wings, the mid-fuselage and the orbital maneuver ing system pods on orbiters Challenger and Columbia. Manufacturing changes and use of the quilt-like material enabled engineers to trim the dry weight of the vehicle to 147,980 pounds, which is 1,662 pounds less than Challenger weighed. The orbiter received an initial acceptance inspection in Kennedys Orbiter Pro cessing Facility, or OPF, but was housed in the Vehicle Assembly Building, or VAB, from Dec. 9 until Jan 10. The only two existing OPF high bays were needed to complete more time-critical work on shuttles Columbia and Challenger, slated to launch could be completed on Discovery. tions and launch prepara tions for Discoverys maiden completed in the OPF from Jan. 10 until May 12. The pristine orbiter then moved to the VAB once more for its fuel tank and solid rocket booster stack. The complete vehicle stack rolled out to the launch pad May 19. hazardous test to be com pleted on a new shuttle prior and Discovery passed with engine cutoff and launch abort in the Space Shuttle Program, and only the second such event in the occurred during Discoverys STS 41-D countdown June 26. The rare event took place at T-4 seconds when Discoverys general purpose computer detected an anomaly in the shuttles number three main engine. In the orbiter cockpit, Mission Commander Henry thump of engine ignition, then immediately saw the bright red warning lights signaling the cutoff of two engines. I knew imme diately we werent going anywhere, he said. The engine was re placed in the OPF and the shuttle stack was rolled out to the pad once more Aug. 9. Discovery launched Aug. 30, with only a brief delay when a private aircraft strayed into Kennedys airspace. deployed three satellites on the six-day mission. Discoverys crew included, Pilot Michael Coats, Mission Specialists Judy Resnick, Mike Mullane and Steve Hawley, and Payload to travel into space. Discovery, the third shuttle to become operational, was named after one of two ships that were used by the British explorer James Cook in the 1770s during voyages in the South discovery of the Hawaiian Islands.
John F. Kennedy Space Center Managing editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Candrea Thomas Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Frank Ochoa-Gonzales Copy editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Rebecca Sprague Editorial support provided by Abacus Technology Corp. Writers Group. NASA at KSC is on the Internet at www.nasa.gov/kennedy USGPO: 733-049/600142 Spaceport News is published on alternate Fridays by External Relations in the interest of KSC civil service and contractor employees. Contributions are welcome and should be submitted before publication to the Media Services Branch, IMCS-440. E-mail submissions can be sent to Page 8 SPACEPORT NEWS Oct. 31, 2008 Send photos of yourself and/or your co-workers in action for possible publication. Photos should include a short caption, with names and job titles, from left. Send them to Scheduled for Jan. 26, 2010 Launch/CCAFS: Atlas V, SDO; TBD No earlier than March 5, 2009 Launch/CCAFS: Delta IV, GOES-O; TBD Target Nov. 14 Launch/KSC: Endeavour, STS-126; 7:55 p.m. April 24, 2009 Launch/CCAFS: Atlas V, LRO/LCROSS; TBD No earlier than April 1, 2009 Launch/CCAFS: Delta II, STSS; TBD Target Feb. 12, 2009 Launch/KSC: Discovery, STS-119; 7:36 a.m. Scheduled for March 5, 2009 Launch/CCAFS: Delta II, Kepler; TBD Target May 15, 2009 Launch/KSC: Endeavour, STS-127; 4:52 p.m. Launch/KSC: Atlantis, STS-128; TBD Target July 30, 2009 No earlier than Nov. 16 Launch/CCAFS: Delta IV, NROL-26; TBD Target Oct. 15, 2009 Launch/KSC: Discovery, STS-129; TBD Target Dec. 10, 2009 Launch/KSC: Endeavour, STS-130; TBD Target Feb. 11, 2010 Launch/KSC: Atlantis, STS-131; TBD Target April 8, 2010 Launch/KSC: Discovery, STS-132; TBD Target May 31, 2010 Launch/KSC: Endeavour, STS-133; TBD The Project Management Challenge Conference is several months away, but registration runs from Nov. 3 to Jan. 30. For more information, visit: Bolton Jr. on Oct. 28. Gov. Crist said opening LC-36 to the state of Florida truly is a great celebration for Florida and America. The entrepreneurial spirit is in Floridas DNA, Crist said. Florida remains committed to the future legacy of space exploration and technology development. Kohler said Space Florida currently is working with a number of commercial launch and payload customers who have expressed great interest in utilizing the 50 years of experience Florida has invested in space. From a strategic perspective, the build out of LC-36 is one activity in a broad array of actions to create and develop a Commercial Launch Zone, which is fundamental in establishing an effective, globally competitive economic environment for Florida and for our country, Kohler said. Also attending the ceremony, were state senators Mike Haridopolis and Bill Posey, as well as state repre sentatives Thad Altman, Tony Sasso and Ralph Poppell. Representatives Tom Feeney, Mel Martinez and Bill Nelson also were present. Launch Complex 36 was built to support Atlas-Centaur uncrewed rocket launches. For most of its his tory, it primarily was a NASA launch complex for planetary and space-sci ence missions. During the 1960s and 70s, the agency used the complex to launch Surveyor 1 to the moon, Mariner 9 to orbit Mars, Pioneer 10 to Jupiter, Pioneer 11 to Saturn, and two more Pioneer spacecraft to orbit and explore Venus. Dismantling of the old LC-36 launch pads and gan tries wrapped up earlier this year. From HISTORIC Page 3 The entrepreneurial spirit is in Floridas DNA Florida remains committed to the future legacy of space exploration and technology development. Florida Gov. Charlie Crist A SRC Aerospace Corp., which has 480 workers at Kennedy Space Center who support the shuttle and Constella tion space programs, was selected by the center as the 2008 Small Business Contractor of the Year. Kennedy chose it for providing outstanding technical products and Spaceport Technology Develop ment Contract. award is a testament to the very suc cessful partnership between NASA and ASRC Aerospace at Kennedy Space Center and to the genuine commitment that NASA has to small business, said John Horan, president of ASRC Aerospace. As we work side-by-side in the design and implementation of our nations ity, I look forward to the launch of ultimate demonstration that we are among NASAs best small busi nesses. ASRC Aerospace is a subsid iary of ASRC Federal Holding Co., a group in Alaska representing the business interests of Arctic Slope Regional Corp. In March, ASRC Aerospace received NASAs George M. Low Award, the space agencys highest award for quality and performance. The NASA Small Business Industry Awards recognizes the outstanding contractors that support the space agency in achieving its missions. From Page 1 Specialists Steve Bowen, Shane Kimbrough, Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper, Donald Pettit and Sandra Magnus. Magnus will remain aboard the space station, replacing Expedi tion 17/18 Flight Engineer Gregory Chamitoff, who will return to Earth with the STS-126 crew. Oct. 26, to participate in the Termi nal Countdown Demonstration Test, or TCDT, giving them the opportu nity to familiarize themselves with theyll be working with in space. Theyll return to the space days before the launch targeted for Nov. 14. In the meantime, their space craft stands proud, ready to embark the building of the International Space Station.