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February 7, 2008

Miles from Earth: Go For Launch

Posted: 02:18 PM ET

Now forecast go for launch!

- From Miles O’Brien, CNN’s chief technology and environment correspondent

Filed under: NASA • Uncategorized

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Ernest   February 7th, 2008 2:21 pm ET

all right we go ,,,

Sam W   February 7th, 2008 2:23 pm ET

Great News. Looks like everything else is go as well.

Doug B   February 7th, 2008 2:24 pm ET

What is the big problem with weather on these launches? Airliners take off and land in all sorts of bad weather, so why does the weather have to be absolutley perfect when the shuttle launches?

pmayo   February 7th, 2008 2:26 pm ET

Miles - that is not a $50 part (even back in 1970 it was not $50) that you can buy at the RAT Shack (radio shack). More like $2000 with gold pins,

Ryan   February 7th, 2008 2:28 pm ET

You lucky dog. I've always wanted to see the shuttle launch. Been down there twice to see it but it was delayed and I have yet to get a chance. time is running out for the shuttle program. You are so lucky to cover every launch. Seems like there will be a gap until the next vehicle is ready to go... Will you miss it when the last one takes off?

Richard   February 7th, 2008 2:33 pm ET

Excellent news. Can't wait to watch it. Go Atlantis!

Tom S   February 7th, 2008 2:33 pm ET


Looking forward to launch. Appreciate very much your reporting.

Want to come down to Melbourne Beach and say hi?


Mark   February 7th, 2008 2:36 pm ET

woo hoo, let's finally get that space station gear up there!

Duane   February 7th, 2008 2:45 pm ET

Mike Tirico is really excited on ESPN radio. Those of you along the coast, dial it up! WIXC 1060 am on your radio dial.

VdV   February 7th, 2008 2:58 pm ET

Godspeed, Atlantis. We'll be waiting for you back in 11-12 days.

Ken   February 7th, 2008 2:58 pm ET

Doug B: The shuttle is not an airliner. It's designed to launch and land under baselined conditions. During landing the shuttle just falls. It is not flown. It can not maneuver around bad weather like an airplane. Not only does the weather have to be acceptable in Florida in case of a contingency, but it also has to be acceptable in certain places in Spain and France in case we have to land there.

JimmB   February 7th, 2008 3:00 pm ET

The shot from the camera on the fuel tank seemed to last much much longer than in the past. Are they using some new technology for that? It still looked like an analog video feed (it broke up to snow, not pixels). Miles, can you enlighten us on the technology of the tank camera?

Also, about a minute before tank separation, there seemed to be a corona-like effect over the wings. Do they get the plasma effect on launch like they do on re-entry? Or was that just the engine flames?

Marc   February 7th, 2008 3:00 pm ET

Man I thought at first it was going to be scrubbed but the weather held up so to the shuttle atlantis crew good luck.

Richard   February 7th, 2008 3:05 pm ET

Atlantis blasts off! The moment when it actually lifts off has to be one of the most amazing things I've ever seen, even if it was only on TV.

Everything's going fine so far. 🙂 It'll be a great shame when there are no liftoffs between 2010, when the Shuttle retires, and 2014, when its successor first blasts up into space.

Thanks CNN for the great coverage on Live.


Sam W   February 7th, 2008 3:08 pm ET

I really like the NASA TV webcast CNN does, but I wish Miles and the others had more air time on CNN. Few min before and after does not seem to do it justice. Thanks Miles for what you do for space coverage, just wish there was more of it.

Janilton Sousa   February 7th, 2008 3:08 pm ET

Hi Miles. congretulations for all of you,, good job.
Whats hapening with the main tank and the camara?
All the best.

Jim   February 7th, 2008 3:18 pm ET

Great to see the shuttle go today on CNN. Sure couldn't see it from here in KORL!We're flying Young Eagles Saturday in KISM and the TFR would be problematic.

Do you ever fly your Cirrus into KTIX for launches? I can't imagine you flew your own plane for this launch, considering the cold front.

Debbie   February 7th, 2008 3:21 pm ET

I never get tired of seeing the Shuttle's blast-offs and landings...I get choked up every time. Go figure. I watched at NASA tv. Do you know how many people watch via the NASA website? (I don't have CNN on tv anymore.) I know these missions are watched less, or so I have heard...but wondering if at least 1million watch??

Yvonne   February 7th, 2008 3:50 pm ET

I would also like to know more about the tank camera and would especially like to know what exactly is it that we are seeing outside the tank, eg. stars, other small moving objects,coronas, etc..

I would also like more air-time for Miles!

God Speed Atlantis!

Gary W.   February 7th, 2008 5:49 pm ET


Your quick description of the replacement plug procedure for the ECO sensors, reminded me of a long ago similar description by the late NBC News Reporter Frank McGee.

Gemini 6 failed to launch because a launch plug dropped out moments before liftoff, causing a shutdown of the Titan booster in December 1965. This was the flight with Wally Schirra and Tom Stafford to do the first rendezvous with Gemini 7. Frank McGee was able to demostrate a huge cable with an equally hug connector of multiple connectors (probably from the old huge RCA Color tv cameras used then).

Good to see a little bit of old Engineering and elbow grease made the fix work for the ECO sensors. Problem is, why did they start to act up after over 100 shuttle launchs from 1981 to 2005?

Gary W.

dave reis   February 7th, 2008 11:15 pm ET

Thank you Mr. O'brien. You are one of the few reporters that stick to the facts and reflecting reality from an age of enlightenment scientific sort of way. Just yesterday some of your CNN comrades were reporting a major candidate bragging about being superstitious...and they didn't even question it? I bet you would now days question a psychologically compromised astronaut? Keep up the good work...and please encourage CNN to always side with reality/science.

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