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UPDATE #27 - July 10, 1998

PART 1: The First Wright Flyer Online Chat
PART 2: Sharing NASA Takes Flight with Summer Aerospace QuestChats!
PART 3: A Good Time to Fire the Cannon
PART 4: Subscribing & Unsubscribing: How to do it


THE FIRST WRIGHT FLYER ONLINE CHAT

This is your chance to ask questions about the upcoming Wind Tunnel test
of the 1903 Wright Flyer Replica.  Aerospace Team Online intends to
spend a great deal of attention to this test next fall. Take time to find
our more about it.  Any questions on registration email me, I would be
happy to help first time chatter register, slee@mail.arc.nasa.gov

Tuesday, July 21, 1998 10 a.m. - 11 a.m. Pacific Time:
Chat with Craig Hange

Craig Hange is the Research Engineer at NASA who will be the test engineer
for the NFAC Wind Tunnel Test of the 1903 Wright Flyer Replica
built by the Los Angeles Chapter of the American Institute of Aeronautics
and Astronautics (AIAA). Read his biography at

http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/aero/team/hange.html

SHARING NASA TAKES FLIGHT WITH SUMMER AEROSPACE QUESTCHATS!

Wondering how to spice up your summer? Looking for a way to beat the heat?
Quest is running a series of COOL chats this summer. Oran Cox the
QuestChat guru, will host these chats with experts from different Quest
Sharing NASA Projects who share an involvement in space transportation
including alternative space vehicles, and developing spacecraft that allow
humans to travel further into space. Aprille Ericsson, from the Women of
NASA project, and Grant Palmer, from the Aerospace Team Online project,
and Andrew Petro from the Space Team Online project to discuss their
involvement in spacecraft design. They are just three of the many NASA
scientists, engineers, and researchers involved in this important work.



Tuesday, August 4, 11:30 a.m. Pacific: Aprille Ericsson, aerospace
engineer
            
In order to understand how spacecraft may behave during flight, April
conducts simulations on spacecraft designs. The simulations allow her to
determine if any changes should be made to the construction and design of
spacecraft, and how the propulsion systems will function. She also teaches
engineering design and professional engineering courses at Bowie State
University in Bowie, Maryland. Read Aprille's autobiography before to
joining this chat. http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/women/bios/ae.html

Registration for this chat will begin on July 21.
http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/




Tuesday, August 11, 9:30 a.m. Pacific: Grant Palmer, computational fluid
dynamics engineer
               
When a spacecraft such as the space shuttle returns to Earth from space,
the friction caused by the air rushing past the surface of a vehicle
causes it to heat up. Grant writes computer programs that predict how hot
the vehicle surface will get. Grant's work is part of a larger process
called computational fluid dynamics (CFD). His work is important because
without CFD, spacecraft designers would have to guess how hot a vehicle 
would get. If their guesses are wrong, a vehicle would either be heavier
than it had to be or get damaged when it returned to Earth.
Read Grant's autobiography before joining this chat. 
http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/aero/team/palmer.html
Registration for this chat will begin on July 28.
http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/


TBA: Andy Petro, spacecraft design engineer
Andy is part of a team involved with planning future projects and
designing spacecraft for returning to the moon and going on to Mars. He
explains that"designing spacecraft means that we do a lot of
'brainstorming' to come up with new ideas." But his team also works on
improvements to space shuttles and designs for launchers, which will
eventually replace the shuttles. Much of their work also consists of
working through many calculations and making drawings and models of
spacecraft designs. 
Read Andy's autobiography before joining this chat. 
http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/space/team/petro.html
Registration for this chat TBA. http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/

[Editor's Note: Stephen Jaeger is an audioacoustic engineer. Sound good? He says it's fun. Stephen works on noise reduction studies, a current topic in aeronautical design, and has been calibrating the 40 by 80 wind tunnel which has just been lined with acoustic tiles. The Wright Flyer Test may occur in this wind tunnel in January. Read his bio and other journals at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/aero/team/jaeger.html ]

A GOOD TIME TO FIRE THE CANNON

by Stephen Jaeger


Monday Morning, June 1st, 1998

Today is the first day of our wind-off calibration for the new 40-
by 80-Foot Wind Tunnel Test Section. For the last two years, NASA has
spent $25 million to renovate the test section. They peeled away the shell
of the wind tunnel and lined it with four feet of sound-absorbing
fiberglass wedges. Then they covered the fiberglass with a floor made of

metal sheets with small holes to allow the sound to pass through into the
fiberglass. This week we are going to bounce sound waves off the floor of
the tunnel. We can measure the resulting echo and determine how well the
lining absorbs sound.

7:40 AM: I arrive at work, make coffee and read my E-mail. I
respond to some messages regarding the AIAA (American Institute of
Aeronautics and Astronautics.) I am the local newsletter editor. We are
trying to coordinate advertising for an upcoming public meeting on the
International Space Station.


8:30 AM: I talk to Ron and Mike, the wind tunnel mechanics about
lifting in the JLG. The JLG, or cherry picker, is a vehicle with a basket
on the end of a boom. An operator can lift themselves up to 45 feet. Since
the wind tunnel is 40 feet high inside, we need the JLG to reach up to the
ceiling panels so that we can test them. Like the mechanics, Julie and I
are certified to run the JLG. Mike said they could lift it in as soon as
they find planks to cover the floor.

9:00 AM: I crawl through the balance house below the test
section with Julie to look for instrumentation power. We need clean
instrumentation power to run our acquisition system. Sometimes, using
power right out of the wall can affect our results. I also sent off a
quick E-mail to the group to remind them to be careful in the test
section. The test section floor is very fragile. Moving heavy equipment
and dropping tools on the floor can damage it very easily.

10:00 AM: While waiting for the mechanics, I take some time out
to work on my performance evaluation for the past year. My company
computes my yearly raise based on my work performance.


10:30 AM: I return to the test section to see what's going on.

11:30 AM: I consult with a student, Jessica about putting
fiberglass foam in the dodecahedron to deaden reflections. The
dodecahedron is a 12 sided speaker box designed to produce the same noise
in every direction. Jessica rotated the box on a turntable with noise fed
through the speakers and measured the change in the sound as it rotated
past the microphone. Jessica is helping us out by calibrating the speakers
we will use for the calibration.


12:30 PM: I went for a run and lifted weights. I ate a salad for
lunch.

1:30 PM: Paul, Jessica and I go over the dodecahedron
calibration data.

2:30 PM: I showed Julie how to use an end mill to cut a slot in
a bracket she needs to mount some power supplies. The end mill is like a
drill except the bit can cut slots instead of holes. I review Paul's data
log.

3:00 PM: I found the instrument power outlets and I ran an
extension cord to it. Then Ron and Mike lift in the JLG.

4:00 PM: I work on some miscellaneous errands.

4:30 PM: Paul and Julie come by to discuss the status of the
test so far. I venture up to the test section to check on the progress and
to see if there is something more interesting to do than just sit at my
computer.

4:45 PM: Tested JLG in test section. Found hard hats. Discussed
progress with Paul. Wrote list of things to do for tomorrow. E-mailed list
of things to do for mechanics.

6:00 PM: Worked on performance evaluation and went home.

Tuesday Morning, June 2nd, 1998

8:00 AM: Made coffee and read E-mail.

8:45 AM: Went up to the test section to see what kind of
trouble I could get into. The mechanics were lifting in the Arc.

9:00 AM: Julie and I went looking for harnesses for the JLG.

9:30 AM: Paul and I positioned the Arc over the first floor
panel called F1. I began the laborious process of making fiberglass and
cloth pillows to wrap around the Arc to reduce possible reflections.

10:30 AM: I tried starting the JLG but I ran the battery down.
(Whoops.) Mike started recharging the battery.

11:30 AM: Went to lunch for Chinese food with friends from the
branch. Went to vote. I have voted in almost every election since I was
18.

1:00 PM: Did some paperwork.

1:30 PM: I successfully started the JLG and maneuvered it around
the test section and up to the ceiling to make sure I can reach all of the
panels that we want to test. I try not to look down too much because it's
a long drop. Rob, another engineer, has set up his device in the test
section to test it. I think it will work very well.

2:00 PM: Julie has been having trouble with our test setup. The
electrical power we are using appears to be interfering with our
measurements. I located a portable transformer downstairs. It weighs about
180 pounds so I use a hand truck to haul it up to the test section. It
works a bit better but we found if we just crank the speaker louder.

3:30 PM: Paul and I position the Arc over the floor panel and
Julie begins taking some data.

5:00 PM: I do some paperwork.

8:00 PM: I found out my dad has gone to the hospital with a
possible stroke, so I flew to Idaho for a week to help out. He's still in
critical condition, but we're hopeful. Fortunately, I have good friends
and co-workers who can cover for me during this busy time.

Tuesday Morning, June 9th, 1998

10:00 AM: After flying back from Idaho this morning, I turned
on the computer and was greeted with 56 E-mail messages. Things back up
when you're gone.  No time to read them now.

10:30 AM: I boogie up to the test section. Julie and Paul have
completed the local acoustic testing. I have been told the
Rob Rig (or the calibration pole), Rob designed has worked very
well, and I am glad I'll get a chance to see it work.

11:00 AM: I try out the Rob Rig on the JLG. It works very
well.

2:00 PM: There is a mandate from the Federal government to
document our activities for the national archives. Some time in the
future, say in the year 2050, an historian may want to look back in the
past and try to figure out what we we're doing here. To make their job
easier, we make an effort to document our tests with notes, files and
photographs. Therefore, I have called a photographer over to the test
section to take photos of our equipment.

3:30 till midnight: The wind Tunnel Mechanic, Ron and I are the
only ones left tonight. We spent most of the time moving equipment out of
the test section and wrapping our microphone stands with fiberglass and
cloth. We are getting ready to do pulse reflection measurements in the
test section.

12:30 PM: I slept in. I was working till midnight last night so
it seems fair.

1:00 PM - 6:00 PM: Ron, Paul, Chris and I ran microphone cables
through the test section down to the control room for three microphones.
The microphones are mounted 15 feet in the air on commercial microphone
stands. They surround a 12-foot tower at the center of the test section.
On the tower I have mounted a yachting cannon. The yachting cannon fires
a 10-gauge shotgun blank. We want to record the blast of the cannon and
the reflections off of the walls and ceilings.


Meanwhile, Julie has prepared software that we will use to
capture or record the noise. Because the blast of the cannon is so fast,
our instruments must be triggered by the sound itself so that we can
record the signal.

7:00 PM: Well, no one seems to be here except Ron and I, so it
seems like a good time to fire the cannon. We called NASA security first
to make sure no one gets alarmed by the loud noise. I set up the analyzer
to capture a cannon blast. I put on some earmuffs to protect my hearing

and I discharge the cannon by pulling on a rope hanging down from the
tower. The cannon immediately emits a large cloud of smoke and debris. The
wind tunnel responds with a few echoes of its own from the test section
out to the vane sets and beyond. I DO like this job.


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