You probably know that the United States is mothballing its fleet of space shuttles, and taking proposals from museums and such that want to adopt the three remaining orbiters. The decision on where Discovery, Atlantis and Endeavour will go is expected April 12th, the 30th anniversary of Columbia’s flight on STS-1.
Well, it seems that some faint whisper of this news has lately wafted in to the op/ed office at Houston’s Leading Information Source, which this morning boldly editorialized in favor of one of those ships ending up in Houston, the home of NASA’s Mission Control for human spaceflight, because, well, we’re Houston, dammit, and NASA should “do the right thing.”
The editorials in our little local publication have earned such a bad reputation over the years that I rarely bother to read them, and certainly not when they lead from the rear on pressing local issues. So hats off to the good folks at blogHOUSTON.net for catching the comment today from the guy who schooled the Chron on the major unforced fact errors in what they must surely have thought was a simple rah-rah for the home team.
“The Discovery, the orbiter that flew first and furthest”
Discovery is the oldest surviving space-capable orbiter, but it was not the first to fly. Enterprise was the first to fly in the atmosphere; Columbia was the first to fly in space.
When they get the easy stuff so wrong…