July 28, 2005
Watched the shuttle launch today. I've got to get down to Canaveral some time to see one in person.
They added a bunch of cameras to the shuttle, including one that looked straight down the fuel tank. For some reason that one struck me as extremely cool. Unfortunately, the feed from NASA I was watching crapped out under the strain so I didn't get to see the fuel tank drop -- I was hoping they'd cut to that camera again, like in the old Apollo footage.
Also, since the skies over Florida were so clear I got to see the shockwave form as the shuttle broke the sound barrier. Seeing that white haze form on the orbiter's nose then fade away is truly incredible.
At first glance it looks like the launch went off without a hitch. Right now Discovery is still in its highly elliptic launch orbit; they're about 20 minutes from firing the thrusters to achieve a higher, more circular orbit that will intersect with the space station.
Yep, defeintely have to get to Canaveral.