Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Darth Vader's TIE Fighter from STAR WARS: EPISODE IV - A NEW HOPE.

PHOTOS OF THE DAY... Last night, STS-130 astronauts finally unveiled the long-awaited observation deck known as the "Cupola" onboard the International Space Station (ISS). The seven-windowed Cupola will be used to take high-resolution photography of the Earth as well as view incoming spacecraft as they approach and dock with the ISS. Just thought I’d share some exterior and interior pics of the Cupola below.

The International Space Station's new Cupola, with its seven window shutters open.

Oh, and you can probably guess why I included an image of a TIE Fighter (Technically, it's a TIE Advanced if you’re a die-hard Star Wars geek) at the top of this post. The Millennium Falcon would also apply. George Lucas must be proud right now...

Spacewalking astronauts Robert Behnken (top) and Nicholas Patrick prepare to 'unwrap' the Cupola onboard the International Space Station.

Astronaut Nicholas Patrick works on the newly-unveiled Cupola.

The coast of Algeria as viewed from inside the Cupola.

The Sahara Desert as viewed from inside the Cupola.

Space station crewmembers Jeffrey Williams and Soichi Noguchi pose inside the Cupola.

Nicholas Patrick hangs out inside the Cupola.

Images courtesy of Lucasfilm Ltd. & NASA

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Space shuttle Endeavour stands poised for liftoff at Launch Complex 39A at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on February 6, 2010.
NASA / Troy Cryder

ONE YEAR AGO TODAY, I flew down to central Florida to visit Kennedy Space Center (KSC) for the first time. What would’ve made today even sweeter would’ve been the launch of Endeavour on the first flight of this final year in the space shuttle program. Endeavour’s first launch attempt was scrubbed early this morning due to bad weather...and is making a second liftoff attempt a couple of hours from now (though the weather may be problematic yet again tonight). Will I visit KSC again, you ask? Well, I was planning to just so I could see in person an Ares I rocket on its launch pad, but Obama ruined everything last Monday. Oh well.

Posing in front of space shuttle Discovery on its pad at LC-39A, on February 8, 2009.