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Space Team Online QuestChat

Date: January 6, 1999

Featuring: Michael Ciannilli
Test Project Engineer
NASA Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral, FL

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 5 - 09:34:16 ]
Hello to our early arriving Space Team Online chat participants! Today's Space Team Online chat with Michael Ciannilli from NASA Kennedy Space Center will begin at 10:00 a.m., Pacific Standard Time. Be sure you have read Michael's autobiography at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/space/team/ciannilli.html before joining this chat.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 6 - 09:34:41 ]
Once the chat begins, Michael will attempt to answer as many of your questions as he can, but please be patient. We may use "moderation" during the chat if Michael falls behind with our questions. This means that only a few questions will be posted to the chat room at a time. Don't worry if your questions do not appear on your screen immediately during moderation. They will be held in our chat queue and posted as Michael answers those ahead of you.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 7 - 09:35:01 ]
As a reminder, remember to enter "Your Handle" in the box provided, before posting questions to the chat room. Once you've done this, please let us know that you have logged on for today's chat.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 8 - 09:35:30 ]
At the conclusion of today's chat, we ask that you take a few minutes to let us know what you thought about it. For your convenience, you may use our online feedback forms at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/qchat-surveys. We look forward to hearing from you!

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 13 - 10:00:03 ]
Hello and welcome to today's Space Team Online chat with Michael Ciannilli from NASA Kennedy Space Center. Mike monitors all of the systems on the orbiter as they are tested, and resolves any conflicts during systems testing that may arise. During vehicle testing, Mike ensures vehicles are in their proper configuration to power up in the morning and perform the scheduled testing. He helps find solutions to any problems that occur during testing. Additionally, Mike supports a wide variety of shuttle upgrades along with the next generation of launch vehicle studies.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 14 - 10:00:24 ]
And now, here is Michael Ciannilli to answer your questions.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 12 - 09:59:42 ]
I would like to welcome all of you to the Cape!!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 17 - 10:01:58 ]
RE: [MrArtunian-Mr.Artunian] I heard you age slower in space than on earth. Say there are two twin brothers and one goes into space for a year and one stays on earth, what will be the age differences? Thanx! And keep up the good work at NASA!
Interesting question...well it is true the time does go slower for those traveling in space, however, that has more to deal with the speed you are traveling. As far as giving you an exact number I would have to spend some time working some heavy math...but if there is time later

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 19 - 10:03:31 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] Hi Mike, In your journals you often refer to the "firing room". What exactly goes on in there?
Well, in the Firing Room we do several things. Foremost that is where the launch team moniters the space shuttle for launch. However, we all do all of the testing from landing until the next launch in there too.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 21 - 10:04:56 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Has the war with Iraq caused a problem with US relations with the other countries working on the ISS?
Hi Joe, well so far the Iraq problem hasn't caused any major problems for ISS. Russia has had problems with us dealing with Iraq, but it hasn't carried over yet to the space program.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 22 - 10:06:13 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Have you ever been in space?
I have never been in space Joe, but if they ever have an extra seat empty I would probably raise my hand pretty quick!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 26 - 10:08:04 ]
Where is PalMac High School?

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 35 - 10:13:17 ]
RE: [Josh-JoshHamell/PalMacHigh] Near Rochester
Wow, Josh...not too far from my hometown of Syracuse!!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 53 - 10:29:18 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Mike, Palmyra-Macedon High School (Pal-Mac) is located about 30 miles southeast of Rochester, NY. We are about 700 students in grades 9-12.
How's the weather up that way? It has kinda seemed like Upstate New York down here lately with out cold weather!!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 28 - 10:09:29 ]
RE: [john-Mr.Artunian] what's the status of the next mission to mars, if any?
Hi John, timely question! NASA on Sunday launched a new mission to Mars. It will be a lander that will study the soil.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 31 - 10:10:55 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Are you directly involved with the construction of the ISS? If so, what part do you play?
Joe, I personally am not involved in the design or construction of the International Space Station ( ISS ). My job will be to get the Space Shuttle ready to launch these pieces into orbit.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 32 - 10:11:13 ]
RE: [MichaelCiannilli/KSC] Hi John, timely question! NASA on Sunday launched a new mission to Mars. It will be a lander that will study the soil.
John, we also have chats with Mars experts schedule for this week and in the future. Be sure to check Space Scientists Online chat schedule at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/sso/chats/sched.html for more information about Mars chats.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 34 - 10:12:45 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] When a mission is in orbit, do you do much work on that particular mission or are you busy testing for the next mission?
Well, Jamie...as soon as the orbiter is in orbit I pretty much focus on the other vehicles, getting them ready for launch. I do moniter the flight and the performance of the shuttle up there, but the folks out in Houston keep a closer eye on that part of the mission.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 38 - 10:15:28 ]
We would like to remind you to share your thoughts about today's chat with us. Be sure to visit our chat feedback page at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/qchat-surveys after today's chat.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 39 - 10:17:03 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] My class is called Advanced Auto CAD and we have a up to date lab and there are presently about 8 students with me. I have given them a research problem that involves investigating the ISS. This is pretty exciting for us. What advice would you give to would-be future engineers?
Mr Vivirito, sounds like you have an interesting program up there. Best of luck with it. It is always great to hear of dedicated teachers exporing new technology. Advice, well ALWAYS to try to do the best you can. Find what interests you, set your goals and keep going for them until you achieve them!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 41 - 10:18:52 ]
RE: [Josh-JoshHamell/PalMacHigh] Could you direct us to some in depth diagrams and schematics of the ISS and its components?
Well Josh, as far as ISS goes, I don't have too much information on that program goes as far as drawings. However, I would reccommend exporing all the NASA internet sites and also write to both NASA and Boeing and request specific information. They should be a great help.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 43 - 10:20:28 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] How long does it normally take to refurbish the shuttles for the next launch?
It takes roughly 3 months minimum to get the shuttle ready to fly again, but can be longer if we need to do special modifications or if we have many things to repair and retest.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 46 - 10:21:43 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Where is your home now?
I live in the town of Cape Canaveral, which is next to Cocoa Beach. It is a little beach town where the biggest thing around is a Surf Shop. I do try to get back to Syracuse as often as I can though.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 48 - 10:23:05 ]
RE: [Josh-JoshHamell/PalMacHigh] Thank you, Mr Ciannilli I'll look over them right now. Catch ya' later!
If you can't find anything, feel free to write to me via the space team online site on the internet. Good luck!!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 49 - 10:24:21 ]
RE: [John-Mr.Artunian] Just how many people will the new space station hold when it's completed? And how long will they be able to stay on it until having to return home?
Well John maybe one day we will see you up there on the ISS. The average crew will be about 5-7 I believe and stay up there for most likely 6 month of so stays,

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 50 - 10:27:11 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] One of my students would like to know what your salary is?
Salary huh? well...good one....let's just say near average for an engineer in Florida.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 54 - 10:31:19 ]
For those of you leaving us, please visit our chat feedback page at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/qchat-surveys and share your thoughts about the chat with us. Thanks!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 56 - 10:32:28 ]
RE: [john-Mr.Artunian] What's a typical day in the life of Michael Ciannilli like?
Between the jet setting, and Hollywood parties......ah just kidding!! Actually pretty normal. I work 7 - 3:30 everyday, sometimes on weekends. In the evenings I like to hang out with friends, work on the computer or in the summer go to the beach and go surfing.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 58 - 10:33:57 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] I have been to Ron Jon's surf shop many times. Any suggestions as to some good bars that serve clams in Coco Beach?
Clams huh, yea one of my favorites too. I would go down to Port Canaveral and there are several restraunts there that have great clams and oysters!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 60 - 10:37:21 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Average temperature the last few days has been in the teens and low 20's with wind chills below zero. My dog didn't want to go out this morning. I'm looking forward to our winter break in February. I'll be in Fort Lauderdale for a week.
That sounds great Joe!! Have a great time. If you pass by the Cape at all I definitely recommend our Visitor's Center...but then again I have to admit I am a little biased!!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 63 - 10:41:01 ]
RE: [John-Mr.Artunian] How powerfull are the computers that run the systems on the shuttle compared to your Newer home Pc?
Well, this may be hard to believe but the ones we have onboard are ALOT less powerful, until recently they were just 64k. However, they do the job. The problem is that it takes a real long time to certify new components for flight. The older stuff works so we still use it. There is a new Shuttle Upgrades Program that is updating the systems though. Actually, we always carry several new laptops onboard no to add extra computer power, especially for activities like docking with the space station.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 67 - 10:45:18 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] Do you have a favourite mission that you have worked on, or even a favourite orbiter?!
Hi Jamie! Favorite mission huh? Well, not really as every one is so different and exciting for all different reasons. As for orbiters I do like them all, however, I must admit I have a sentimental soft spot for Columbia. I was building models of her when I was in Junior High School and now I am assigned to the Columbia Team in my group.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 70 - 10:47:26 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Several students would like to know what your favorite Italian dish might be since your name is Italian.
Boy, with questions like that you are gonna get me hungry again!! And I just had lunch!!!! I would have to say just about anything my Mom makes. She is an excellent cook. My favorite dish though is called Colomod....otherwise known as squid. Sounds good huh??!!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 72 - 10:49:11 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] Talking of the shuttle launches, how close to the launch pad is the employees' viewing area? Do you get to watch every launch?
Well Jamie, the closest we can get is about 3 1/2 miles to the pad for safety reasons. I do get to see every launch which is really cool! Even if I am not working at the time, I come out here to be close anyways. Hopeully one day you and your classmates can see a live one.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 73 - 10:50:40 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] As you're in the Columbia Team, does that mean that you work on Columbia only?
No, I work all the vehicles and sometimes all of them in one day. However I follow all the processings schedules and problems in great detail with Columbia.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 75 - 10:51:14 ]
RE: [John-Mr.Artunian] Stuffed squid, I'll have to try it sometime! :)
You have too...it is GREAT!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 76 - 10:51:34 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] I actually saw STS-83 launched which I think was Columbia when I was on holiday in Florida a couple of years ago.
Great, I remember that one!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 78 - 10:52:50 ]
RE: [Joe-Mr.Vivirito/PalMacHighSchool] Well, this has been a real treat for us. Its back to work on our current project. If you do plan on coming up to Syracuse give us a line and we would love to meet with you and have you visit us. My dream has been to take a group of students down to watch a shuttle launch. Someday. Seeya.
well thank you for the offer, I would like to meet all of you. If anything is ever put together, please let me know!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 80 - 10:53:57 ]
RE: [John-Mr.Artunian] Well, The weather in syracuse is COLD! And we have been hit with quite a bit of snow in the last few days! Very icy also..Florida is looking very good right about now!
It was freezing this morning, but I guess I can't say too much cause the sun is still shining and that " white stuff " is nowhere to be found!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 81 - 10:54:45 ]
RE: [John-Mr.Artunian] well, nice talking with you mike. Don't work too hard down there in sunny Florida! Talk to ya again soon!
Thanks John!! I won't. Great luck with school!!!! Hope to talk again soon!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 82 - 10:56:15 ]
RE: [John-Mr.Artunian] what operating system do you use?
I assume you are referring to the launch software. We use a program called GOAL, which is specifically designed for the shuttle program.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 84 - 11:00:07 ]
RE: [Josh-JoshHamell/PalMacHigh] I was talking with my friends about the old Star Wars program that involves alot of laser to intercept ICBM's. When I was on Boeng's sight I saw one of their products, a satellite killer. I know this is a little out there, but will the ISS be fitted with any defensive measures in case of emergency? (Feel free to answer no comment - I understand.)
Nothing like that Josh. It is an interesting idea, but hopefully we won't need that up there. But I do recommend to keep searching the net as there are some interesting ideas out there.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 85 - 11:01:05 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] Are there any UK graduates working in your department?
No UK grads Jamie, alot of guys down here went to Florida schools...

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 86 - 11:02:38 ]
RE: [John-Mr.Artunian] what operating system do you use?
John, the answer on this one can be found on question 82

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 87 - 11:03:59 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] As you're in the Columbia Team, does that mean that you work on Columbia only?
Jamie, answer to this one can be found on question 73.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 89 - 11:07:54 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] What was the most serious or urgent problem with the shuttle you've had to deal with in your career?
Great question Jamie...let's see. Fortunately, nothing that was too bad. What comes to mind is STS-83 in April of 1997 when we had to land early because of a fuel cell problem. Other than that we have been fortunate. I have seen several situations that could have been " a bad day " however, the situation was recognized quickly and a problem was adverted.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 90 - 11:08:13 ]
Once again, please share your thoughts about today's chat with us at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/qchat-surveys.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 93 - 11:10:06 ]
For information: Our next mission will be the Space Shuttle Columbia on mission STS-93 in April. On this flight we will carry the Advanced X-ray Astronomical Facility ( AXAF ) into space.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 94 - 11:13:28 ]
RE: [Josh-JoshHamell/PalMacHigh] Will the NASA budget be cut if the Democrats assume full power over Congress and the Presidency?
Ok Josh...good question, ya got me on the spot on this one...just kidding! Well, that I don't know. The space program's budget historically as been larger under Rupublican presidental leadership. However, I hope all the parties will see how important it is and provide stronger support for America's space program.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 95 - 11:14:52 ]
This concludes our Space Team Online chat with Michael Ciannili from NASA Kennedy Space Center. Thank you to everyone for joining us today. A very special thanks to Michael Ciannilli for sharing his time, experiences and expertise with us online!

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 97 - 11:15:20 ]
Be sure to share your thoughts about today's chat with us at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/qchats/qchat-surveys.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 99 - 11:17:06 ]
Our next Space Team Online chat will be on Thursday, January 7, at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Standard Time, with Michael Moses from NASA Johnson Space Center. Check the Space Team Online chat schedule page at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/space/chats for more information about this and other chats with Space Team experts.

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 101 - 11:17:43 ]
To learn about other chats with NASA experts, also check our Quest schedule of events page, at http://quest.arc.nasa.gov/common/events.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 98 - 11:16:49 ]
I want to thank everone out there for visiting me here at the Cape online. I appreciate your interest and enthusiasm very much. I am very proud of our space program and I am glad to see your support of it. Best of luck in school. Keep doing your best and maybe one day you'll be able to help us out down here!

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 100 - 11:17:25 ]
RE: [Jamie-JamieRadford/SouthamptonUniversity] Thanks for answering the questions Mike. It has been really interesting. Goodbye for now.
Thank you Jamie!! Good luck in school

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 104 - 11:18:56 ]
Thanks again and if you have any additional questions, feel free to send them into my Space Online web site.

[ MichaelCiannilli/KSC - 105 - 11:21:17 ]
Oran, thanks for all of your help. As expected you did an excellent job supporting this project. I appreciate this very much! Have a great day!!

[ Oran/NASAChatHost - 102 - 11:18:19 ]
Thank you again for joining us today. We hope to hear from you online in the near future!


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