Friday, January 19, 2007

Hello? NASA PR?

I finally found the video shot by the WB-57 chase plane of the ST-114 "Return to Flight" launch. It's fabulous. Keep watching, and near the end you'll see the SRB seperation. The plumes from the seperation rockets are huge!

NASA article on the development of the WB-57 camera system


I think this is really compelling imagery, but it's grainy and shaky. Still, it's way more interesting that the view of the three white dots of the engines during ascent. A little postproduction work could stabilize the imagery on this video, and yield something even more fun to watch.


  1. Dear Ambivalent Engineer,

    Nothing to do with the post, but I thought you might like to know that my book "Rad Decision: A Novel of Nuclear Power" is now out in paperback and available at online retailers. You had some kind remarks about it at Episode 38 of my blog a year ago ( ) and also pointed out an error - which I corrected in the print edition. (I noted your keen eye in the book's Afterword). I would like to send you a complimentary copy, but to do so, I'll need an e-mail, as I just send an online gift certificate. If you want one, drop me a line at If you're in a generous mood, I'd invite you to leave a review at any of the online retailers (or if you're more ambivalent than usual, just skip it - you've already made the book better.)

    The blog remains up for the time being with the full text, as I'm accepting no royalties from the book anyway.

    Regards, Jim Aach (Exhausted Engineer)

  2. For those of you who haven't read Jim's book, try it online for a few chapters. The plot is okay, characters okay, details are very good. If your eyes are getting squinty after chapter 4, buy it.

    Actually, I think the problem that Jim is going to have is that most people who get past chapter 4 online aren't going to wait for a paperback to show up.

    Jim, congratulations on getting the thing published. I'm sure it's been a long and winding road.


  3. Thanks, it was indeed very twisting. I'm hoping I can catch some people up front with the paperback who might not surf the blogosphere. It came out looking pretty nice, anyway. And you're right about the pleasure of reading on paper versus a screen.