Thursday, July 14, 2016

Day 4 at Space Camp

We started out our day by launching our rockets.  Chasity and Emily were so excited.....the launch site was named Homer Hickam Field.  Homer Hickam is the guy from the movie October Sky, and he was Emily and Chasity's hero.  Rocket launching was fun, and everybody's rocket launched fine.  Unfortunately, my rocket launched directly towards the trees so I had no hope of recovering it.

        Next we had our Orion mission.  OK, I'll start by saying that those missions are so cool, but our Orion mission was kind of a disaster.  We had a terrible time staying with the MET, and we skipped around terribly.  I think there was several issues, but I feel like mostly we hadn't been assigned to jobs that fit our skills and that made it hard for us to succeed.  I also think that our crew trainer wasn't as helpful for us as the one at our shuttle mission.
       After lunch we had the Multi axis trainer.  This was something else I had been so excited to try.  This was right out of the movie Space Camp....except there was no steering mechanism like the one Lea Thompson practiced on.  It is supposed to represent a tumble spin.  Surprisingly, it didn't make you dizzy and it was totally cool.  I lucked out and even got to go twice!!!

    Next, we went to the ablative shielding activity.  We knew a little bit about the gist of the activity because Spencer had talked about it at the one actual educator break out session at we had (all of the others were reclassified as "free time" by our crew trainer.  Anyway, I wasn't necessarily that excited about this activity, but I really loved it!  Like many of the activities, you knew your job, and you had a certain amount of credits to spend on supplies to do the job.  In this case, the job was to create a heat shield for an "eggstronaut" (we named him Neil Eggstrong) that would protect him from a propane torch for five minutes.   If your egg exploded, you got no points, and points were deducted for partially cooked eggs.  Any unspent credits were added to your score.  There was a ton of supplies to pick from with different values...I don't remember them all, but some were lasagna noodles, copper, cork, felt, spackle, and foil.   After much debate, my group decided to use layers of cork, spackle, and foil.  Our egg survived, totally uncooked!  As did everyone from team Columbus .....go team!
       That night we decided to go out for drinks as a team.  Although we invited everyone, only the Americans decided to go that night.  We had a blast all night....including trying to fit all eight of us in one taxi.....can you say clown car?  We even got to name our own yummy drink....the ISS Columbus.  It also happened to be game 7 of the NBA finals between the Cavs and the Warriors.  Jennifer was a Warriors fan, and Luke was a Cavs fan, so it was pretty exciting.  The Cavs won, so Luke even talked the bartender into letting him keep the Arrogant Bastard beer glass.
     I can't remember the exact order of things, but at some point during this day we also did the "rides".....the G-Force and the Space Shot.  They were awesome.  The G Force simulated 4 Gs, and let me tell you, that is something else.  Just trying to move your leg is very difficult, and your face pretty much feels like it's going  to fly off.  I am not sure how many Gs there are at takeoff, but holy cow that is intense.  The Space Shot is supposed to simulate weightlessness.  It's pretty much like the detonator at Worlds of Fun....shoots you straight up and then drops you.  The part at the top is the weightless part.  That ride was super fun!

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