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  From Everest to Space... to Longueuil

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Author Topic:   From Everest to Space... to Longueuil
Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-17-2007 03:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Canadian Space Agency release
From Everest to Space... to Longueuil

On his last space mission, Canadian Space Agency (CSA) astronaut Steve MacLean took a small rock from the summit of Mount Everest (8,850 metres) with him as part of his Official Flying Kit. Contributor Bernard Voyer is one of Canada's greatest explorers and climbers. He was the first North American to climb the highest peaks of the seven continents and reach the world's two poles. On April 17, Steve MacLean will hand the rock back after a presentation by Voyer to CSA employees.

MacLean mentioned the rock among his personal items aboard STS-115 as part of an interview with collectSPACE last year.

For more about the Everest rock, see "A pebble from the summit of Everest" on Voyer's website.

MCroft04
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posted 04-17-2007 07:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MCroft04   Click Here to Email MCroft04     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Actually Steve is going to have to climb Mt. Chimborazo in the Andes to collect a rock from the "highest location on earth". Due to the earth's bulge at the equator, the peak of Mt Chimborazo is farther from the center of the earth than Mt Everest. While Everest is the highest peak from sea level, I believe Steve would have been closer to the top of Mt Chimborazo as he orbited the earth.

LCDR Scott Schneeweis
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posted 04-18-2007 11:07 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for LCDR Scott Schneeweis   Click Here to Email LCDR Scott Schneeweis     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by MCroft04:
Due to the earth's bulge at the equator, the peak of Mt Chimborazo is farther from the center of the earth than Mt Everest. While Everest is the highest peak from sea level, I believe Steve would have been closer to the top of Mt Chimborazo as he orbited the earth.
Contingent upon the Argument of Perigee which on shuttle missions (as well as ISS) infrequently is equatorial and goverened by the type of payload or mission being executed. It can also vary significantly throughout the flight depending on other factors (RAAN, eccentricity, etc.).

Jurg Bolli
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posted 04-18-2007 01:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jurg Bolli   Click Here to Email Jurg Bolli     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Claude Nicollier took a piece of the Matterhorn up into orbit.

MCroft04
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posted 04-18-2007 09:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MCroft04   Click Here to Email MCroft04     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LCDR Scott Schneeweis:
Contingent upon the Argument of Perigee which on shuttle missions (as well as ISS) infrequently is equatorial and governed by the type of payload or mission being executed.
I'll have to be honest and admit that I don't understand. Seems that the shuttle and ISS must pass over the equator on every orbit, but I'm sure that I'm missing something here. Can you point me to some reading that will educate me?

LCDR Scott Schneeweis
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posted 04-18-2007 09:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for LCDR Scott Schneeweis   Click Here to Email LCDR Scott Schneeweis     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Yes the Shuttle passes over the equator (twice) each orbit but that orbit is not circular with respect to the earth (it is an ellipse closer to a true oval) and the closest point of approach (perigee) is not generally fixed at the equator unless the orbit is specifically designed to be so - i.e. equatorial/geostationary or special purpose satellites. Orbital characteristics are defined by Keplerian Elements (of which there are 6 noteworthy ones - up to 8 total) and are an artifact of launch vehicle inclination, velocity, the mass of the object being orbited, rotation of the earth ect. A google search of Keplerian Elements/Orbital Elements should bring up good tutorials.

MCroft04
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From: Smithfield, Me, USA
Registered: Mar 2005

posted 04-19-2007 05:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for MCroft04   Click Here to Email MCroft04     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks Scott; that makes it clear. I'll look for the tutorials.

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