In the rush to put up news about the weekend’s shuttle tragedy, CNN got a little ahead of itself. The shuttle wasn’t travelling quite that fast.
The Columbia is lost. There are no survivors.
On board was a crew of seven: Col. Rick Husband; Lt. Col. Michael Anderson; Cmdr. Laurel Clark; Capt. David Brown; Cmdr. William McCool; Dr. Kalpana Chawla; and Ilan Ramon, a colonel in the Israeli Air Force.
In the skies today we saw destruction and tragedy. Yet farther than we can see there is comfort and hope. In the words of the prophet Isaiah,Lift your eyes and look to the heavens: Who created all these? He who brings out the starry hosts one by one, and calls them each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.
The same Creator who names the stars also knows the names of the seven souls we mourn today.
The crew of the shuttle Columbia did not return safely to Earth. Yet we can pray that all are safely home. May God bless the grieving families, and may God continue to bless America.
Not that I watch “Survivor” or anything, but if I had to root for someone to win the next installment, Survivor:Amazon, it would have to be the JPL Rocket Scientist, Dave Johnson. E! Online comments on the “rocket scientist” as always useful. I’m sure the jokes will continue. Make us proud, Dave!
And come on, when was the last time a rocket scientist and a swimsuit model were in the same show?
Orbital dynamics are very cool. I wanted to specialize in astrodynamics in school, but with all the computational tools being developed, my advisor recommended that I stick to something more broad. But in any case, next year, Mars will be closer to the Earth than it has been in 73,000 years. Not coincidentally, we also launch our Mars Exploration Rovers next year, although we launch before periapsis.