USA Plays Crucial Role in Hubble Mission Success

May 11, 2009

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla., May 11 /PRNewswire/ — From the CEO to the flight operations experts that plan the space walks, to the technicians who install the payload and prepared the orbiter for launch, the STS-125 mission and Hubble Space Telescope are benefitting from the vast experience and capabilities of United Space Alliance in planning, managing, integrating and executing complex human space endeavors.

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USA’s contributions begin with the leadership team, which includes three space veterans who played crucial roles in delivering Hubble and making it a success.

Loren Shriver, vice president for Engineering and Integration, was commander of STS-31, the 1990 Space Shuttle mission that deployed the Hubble Space Telescope. Bill Reeves, associate program manager for Program Integration, was NASA’s lead flight director for that historic deployment mission.

After flaws in the Hubble’s main mirror were discovered, Dick Covey, now USA chief executive officer, served as commander of STS-61 in 1993, the first Hubble Servicing mission, during which the telescope was restored to full operability.

In addition to the first-hand flight experience of the leadership team, the USA workforce brings decades of experience to the entire range of work involved in helping NASA to prepare for this most complex Hubble Servicing mission to date.

USA space operations experts played a key role in nearly every aspect of the mission, including vehicle and payload processing, launch and on-orbit operations. Key tasks for this mission included development of and training for the Hubble mission space walks, tool development for the on-orbit tasks, mission planning and scheduling, and “clean room level” cargo bay preparation. At the same time, USA ground crews accomplished the parallel processing of two Shuttle missions (STS-125 and STS-400, the Launch on Need mission).

“To a certain extent, the USA workforce did what it always does to support a successful and safe Shuttle mission,” Covey said, adding, “but the Hubble mission takes things up a notch because it is more complex, has a more sensitive payload, and will not dock at the International Space Station, requiring that we have two shuttles ready to go simultaneously. I am extremely proud of the work our team has done and will continue to do throughout the mission.”

STS-125 demonstrates the unique value of the Space Shuttle in maintaining and salvaging critical space assets like the Hubble Space Telescope. “No other space craft could have given the world the Hubble telescope that is on orbit today,” Covey added.

United Space Alliance is a world leader in space operations with extensive experience in virtually all aspects of the field. Headquartered in Houston with 10,000 employees working in Texas, Florida and Alabama, USA is applying its broad range of capabilities to NASA’s Space Shuttle, International Space Station and Constellation programs as well as to space operations customers in the commercial and international space industry sectors.

SOURCE United Space Alliance

Source: newswire

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