Space Shuttle Launch – Riding the Booster
I have been a fan of manned space flight since, as a little kid in Central California, I listened to JFK’s speech where he said “I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth”.
Since that televised speech, which was a rare thing in those days, and in black and white way back then, I have followed every manned space flight on TV that I could. I remember my parents allowing me to stay up extra late the night that Apollo 11 landed on the moon. I am proud to be able to say that I heard the words “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” live on my folks new color TV (even though the video that night from the moon was in black and white). It is one night of my childhood that I will never forget.
The other day I got a link to a You Tube video taken with cameras mounted on the Space Shuttle’s SRB’s and when I watched it (several times) I was, and still am, amazed at the quality and different perspectives this video gives of a launch of a Space Shuttle. The video covers the flight into orbit starting with cameras pointing down at the launch pad when the engines light up, through the roll and pitch maneuver shortly after takeoff all the way to SRB separation. As the solid rocket boosters begin their descent back to earth, one of the cameras catches a quick shot of the shuttle pulling away from behind, and even though it only lasts a few seconds, it is amazing to see the shuttle fly away from the camera into orbit. Finally, the video follows the SRB all the way until is splashes into the ocean.
I hope you enjoy this as much as I have.