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Combustion Experiments on STS-83 and STS-94: The Crew's Perspective.

pdf icon Combustion Experiments on STS-83 and STS-94: The Crew's Perspective. (170 K)
Linteris, G. T.; Voss, J. E.; Crouch, R.

Combustion and Flame, Vol. 116, No. 3, 321-322, February 1999.


combustion; microgravity; experiments; space flight


Despite years of planning and hundreds of drop-tower tests in preparation, the combustion experiments aboard STS-83 and STS-94 were full of surprises. Fortunately, these surprises were related to physical phenomena rather than the hardware's performance. The combustion experiments were successful for one main reason: they were ready to fly. From our perspective, there was no more important factor affecting how productive and enjoyable the missions were for us than the talent and dedication of the science team members who had conceived of and built the experiments and with whom we trained and worked. Because of their work, the experiments were clearly defined and elegant, the hardware well-designed and built, and the software simple to use and thoroughly tested. During the flights, knowing that dozens of individuals were working night and day to keep us as productive as possible and to solve problems as they arose allowed us to work expediently.