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Columbia's 'black box' found


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#1 Enmar

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Posted 20 March 2003 - 10:27 AM

Might take time to recover the information, see link:

http://www.accessatl.../20shuttle.html


And yesterday’s news becoming old news real fast, but worth mentioning anyway: The investigating board is back on the heat-shielding tiles theory:

http://www.cnn.com/2...n.ap/index.html
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#2 Christopher

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Posted 20 March 2003 - 03:53 PM

It's actually an overstatement to call this a "black box" -- the shuttle didn't have a recorder designed specifically for that function.  This is one of several data recorders known as experiment support systems, which suggests they were designed more for the scientific work of the shuttle than for the specific function of flight data recording.  So its data might not be as comprehensive as what an actual "black box" could provide.
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#3 Rhea

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Posted 20 March 2003 - 08:23 PM

Thanks for the links, Enmar. I apparently missed this in all the war furor.
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#4 Broph

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Posted 28 March 2003 - 03:30 PM

Christopher, on Mar 20 2003, 12:44 PM, said:

It's actually an overstatement to call this a "black box" -- the shuttle didn't have a recorder designed specifically for that function.  This is one of several data recorders known as experiment support systems, which suggests they were designed more for the scientific work of the shuttle than for the specific function of flight data recording.  So its data might not be as comprehensive as what an actual "black box" could provide.
Well, a plane's "black box" isn't really black anyway - it's orange - to make it easier to find. Strangely enough, the Columbia's black box was, well, black.

The funny thing is, though, that Columbia was the only shuttle that was configured with such a flight data recorder (which is similar, at least in theory, with flight data recorders that planes use). The other shuttles don't have them to save on weight. Since the shuttles radio all the information back to mission control, it was thought that the boxes were redundant. Since the accident happened at a time when there was a communications blackout, this box will probably be invaluable.

Quote

According to NASA's 1988 shuttle reference manual, this onboard instrumentation system measures and records selected pressure, temperature, strain, vibration and event data to support payloads and experiments and to determine what environments the spaceplane experiences during flight.

http://www.space.com...oex_030320.html

#5 Kevin Street

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Posted 30 March 2003 - 09:46 AM

Thanks for the link, Enmar.
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#6 Broph

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Posted 31 March 2003 - 06:43 PM

BTW, I saw on one of those news ticker things this morning that the box indicates that before there was an explosion, there was a huge heat buildup in the left wing.


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