- Press Release
- Jan 30, 2023
Kennedy Space Center Looks Back on Accomplishments in 2000
During the past year, Kennedy Space Center began an ambitious schedule of
Space Shuttle launches as construction of the International Space Station
shifted into high gear. Five Shuttle missions were launched in 2000 and
eight missions are planned for 2001.
The Center also enhanced its capabilities for management of NASA’s
Expendable Launch Vehicle Program. Six expendable launch vehicle (ELV)
missions were managed during 2000 and 13 ELV missions, including the 2001
Mars Odyssey orbiter, are currently scheduled for 2001.
In addition to providing those safe, successful launches, the Center moved
forward in its quest to enhance its mission as a Spaceport Technology
Center. A number of partnerships with other government agencies, commercial
enterprises and academia were strengthened or formed.
“The team has come a long way this year, and we should really be proud,”
said Center Director Roy Bridges. “We’ve had a great year in terms of the
success of our operational missions as well as our technology development
projects. We reorganized the Center’s management structure to better focus
our resources, and we strengthened our strategic partnerships to better
leverage those resources. We’ve laid the groundwork for more great things in
the coming years.”
KSC was positioned for a productive future through a reorganization
effort called KSC 2000. The reorganization is enabling the Center to
participate in NASA’s cutting edge engineering initiatives in its role as a
Spaceport Technology Center. Hundreds of workers were moved to new locations
on Center as part of the reorganization.
The Center and the Air Force’s 45th Space Wing joined forces on several new
enhancements to the Cape Canaveral Spaceport during 2000. They jointly
celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the launch of Bumper 8, the first rocket
launched from the Cape. They also worked together to lay the groundwork for
developing a comprehensive master plan for the Spaceport.
The first Shuttle mission of the year, the Shuttle Radar Topography mission,
STS-99, gathered billions of measurements of the Earth’s surface for
government and public use.
Three missions that followed – STS-101, STS-106 and STS-92 – enabled
astronauts to continue to build, outfit and prepare the International Space
Station for its first set of long-term occupants, the Expedition One crew.
The Expedition One trio took residence in November after being launched from
Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan.
KSC’s most recent launch, STS-97 in late November, allowed astronauts to
deliver and attach the P6 truss segment to the International Space Station.
Two 108.6-foot-long solar array wings were also delivered and activated,
providing the Station with power for both habitation and Station science
Orbiters launched by the KSC Team during 2000 carried 32 crew members into
space, logged more than 23.4 million miles and carried many major payloads
into orbit. Four of the five missions landed at KSC. Poor weather conditions
at KSC forced the landing of Discovery at Vandenberg Air Force Base in
California completing STS-92.
Expendable Launch Vehicles
As lead center for NASA’s acquisition and management of expendable vehicle
launch services, KSC enjoyed a third successful year and moved headquarters
into a refurbished E&O Building at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station
For the first time, NASA KSC remotely managed a rocket launch. The
High-Energy Transient Explorer 2 (HETE-2) launched from the Kwajalein
Missile Range in the South Pacific in October. Because the Kwajalein site
does not have a monitoring setup necessary for the level of management
required by NASA, a system for remotely monitoring the launch was created at
the Spaceport from Hangar AE.
KSC’s Expendable Launch Vehicle team supported two missions launched from
CCAFS. Satellites launched were the GOES-L weather satellite in May and the
latest Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-H) in June.
>From Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the KSC expendable launch team
supported the successful launch of the Imager for Magnetopause-to-Aurora
Global Exploration (IMAGE) in March; the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration’s NOAA-L spacecraft in September; and the Earth Observing
(EO-1) satellite and SAC-C in November.
International Space Station
Several series of Multi-Element Integration Tests on Space Station
components were held during the year to help avoid problems that would be
costly to address in space.
Vacuum chamber tests using a reactivated Apollo-era high altitude chamber
were also held to ensure that Station elements, including the U.S.
Laboratory Destiny, were airtight.
Several Station components were officially transferred to NASA from The
Boeing Co., including the Zenith 1 and P6 Integrated Truss Structures. In
addition, a number of other Station components arrived at KSC for
processing. Among major components delivered to KSC were the P1, P4 and S3
Integrated Truss Structures and the Joint Airlock Module.
Spaceport Technology and Technology Transfer
KSC leadership continued to foster KSC’s development as a Spaceport
Technology Center. Specific technology areas targeted for emphasis were
Fluid System Technologies; Spaceport Structures and Materials; Process
Engineering; Command, Control, Monitoring and Range Technology; and Plant
and Microbiological Sciences.
KSC led the Agency in the number of technology licenses generated. Notable
among new KSC-developed technologies:
* The Personal Cabin Pressure Altitude Monitor was offered for
licensing. The monitor, which is about the size of a hand-held pager, is
designed to warn individuals of potentially dangerous or deteriorating
aircraft cabin pressure altitude conditions through audio, vibratory and
visual alarms. In addition, a lighted digital screen displays a text message
of the warning and the specific condition causing the alarm.
* The Medevac Oxygen System was shared with the Air Force through a
technology transfer agreement with the KSC Technology Programs and
Commercialization Office. The system was originally designed to provide
therapeutic oxygen to astronauts being evacuated by aircraft following a
Shuttle landing at a Transatlantic Abort Landing site. The U.S. Air Force
Air Mobility Command will now use it on C-130 and C-141 aircraft.
* A new nitrogen oxide scrubber for converting toxic vapors from the
Shuttle’s hypergolic oxidizer into fertilizer was installed at Launch Pad
39A and the technology licensed to Phoenix Systems International, Inc. of
McDonald, Ohio. KSC plans to install the system at all scrubbers, and Cape
Canaveral Air Force Station plans to install the system at the Titan Launch
Complex 40. Phoenix Systems anticipates applying the technology to at least
40 percent of the country’s coal-, oil-, and gas-fired boilers.
Contracts, Agreements and Facilities
NASA selected Boeing Delta Launch Services Inc. and Lockheed Martin
Commercial Launch Services Inc. for the NASA Launch Services contract
awards. An Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity contract was awarded to
each contractor with a minimum of one launch service over 10 years. NASA is
authorized to order a total of 70 launch services under all the contracts
bringing the total estimated value to $5 billion.
KSC and the 45th Space Wing marked the second full year under the Joint Base
Operations and Support Contract (J-BOSC). Through J-BOSC, a single set of
base operations and support service requirements have been established for
KSC, CCAFS and Patrick Air Force Base (PAFB). Eighteen different
contractors, often with overlapping and duplicate responsibilities,
previously performed these services.
The two organizations further strengthened their partnership by signing an
interagency agreement that established the Joint Planning and Customer
Service (JPCS) office. The agreement brings together an integrated staff
into a single office to represent both agencies at the Spaceport. The JPCS
serves as a “one-stop shop” for new customers of the two federal agencies.
The two organizations also signed the Consolidated Comprehensive Emergency
Management Plan (CCEMP). The CCEMP established uniform policy guidelines for
the effective mitigation of, preparation for, response to and recovery from
a variety of emergency situations at the Spaceport.
Emergency Preparedness at the Spaceport was further enhanced by the
acquisition of the Mobile Command Center (MCC), a specially equipped
emergency response vehicle. The MCC allows the emergency response team to
better respond when emergencies at the Cape Canaveral Spaceport require a
mobile field command center. The vehicle was purchased by the J-BOSC
contractor Space Gateway Support through J-BOSC contract savings.
The State of Florida appropriated $14 million to help fund construction of
the Space Experiment Research and Processing Laboratory (SERPL), a magnet
facility for KSC’s planned Space Station Commerce Park. The SERPL, being
designed by NASA, will support life sciences and biological flight
experiment processing and research for the Space Station.
The Cryogenics Testbed Facility was unveiled in April. The facility provides
a resource for collaborative research and development in the areas of
thermal insulation systems, cryogenic components, propellant process systems
and low-temperature applications.
The new Vapor Containment Facility, adjacent to the Space Station Processing
Facility, opened in July. Ammonia servicing equipment used to perform
preflight tests and service of ISS hardware is now housed in the facility.
The Vehicle Assembly Building’s “Safe Haven” modifications were tested in
August. For the first time in Space Shuttle history, a fully stacked Shuttle
rolled into High Bay 2 of the VAB. Modifications to the VAB and nearby
rock-paved crawlerway were completed, allowing more storage space and
protection for Shuttle flight hardware from hurricanes or tropical storms.
The new Checkout and Launch Control System (CLCS) at the Hypergolic
Maintenance Facility was declared operational in September. It was the first
of several new CLCS designs scheduled to come on line in the coming months.
CLCS is a multi-year project designed to upgrade outdated control systems at
KSC with highly sophisticated computer systems and software.
A new high-pressure helium pipeline to service launch needs at the new Delta
IV launch complex, Complex 37 at CCAFS, was commissioned in November. The
nine-mile-long, buried pipeline for Complex 37 will save NASA money through
sharing use and costs of the KSC Helium Facility. It will also serve as a
backup helium resource for Shuttle launches.
Also in November, a ribbon cutting was held for the refurbished E&O
Building. Home for NASA’s unmanned missions since 1964, the building was
renovated to host the Expendable Launch Vehicle Program at KSC.
Tourist Destination Upgrades
Several new exhibits, an Astronaut Encounter show and the Dr. Kurt Debus
Conference Facility opened at the KSC Visitor Complex. The additions
represented the final phase of a $120 million redevelopment project by
Delaware North Parks Services of Spaceport Inc. The new conference facility
features an Early Space Exploration exhibit, which highlights early
missions. A second new exhibit, Exploration in the New Millennium, showcases
explorations to Mars.
To ensure funding for future upgrades to the Visitor Complex, a new
admissions policy went into effect. An all-inclusive admission ticket now
provides access to the KSC bus tour, IMAX films and the Robot Scouts and
Universe Theater attractions.
Community Outreach and Education
KSC’s contributions through the 2000 Combined Federal Campaign exceeded its
goal of $220,000, with more than $260,000 given by KSC Civil Service
employees. In addition, 1,174 KSC, CCAFS and PAFB employees joined the
National Marrow Donor Program at KSC’s third annual registration drive.
KSC and CCAFS jointly hosted a Community Appreciation Day on Nov. 4. More
than 43,000 Brevard County residents, in addition to thousands of KSC and
CCAFS employees, attended.
KSC hosted the first Florida Space Summit in January. The summit looked at
the future of space as it relates to the state of Florida. Then in August,
KSC hosted the annual Community Leaders Briefing. KSC executives met with
various community leaders from across Brevard County and the State of
Florida about long-term viability of KSC and benefits the space program
contributes to the community.
On the education front, the NASA KSC Property Disposal Office coordinated
the donation of 1,501 computers to students during fiscal year 2000, which
ended Sept. 30. Major donations were made to schools in Pike County, Ala.,
and Memphis, Tenn.
Students from all over the country gathered for the FIRST (For Inspiration
and Recognition of Science and Technology) regional competition at the KSC
Visitor Complex in March. Thirty teams of high school students tested the
limits of their imagination using robots they designed to compete in a
technological battle against other schools’ robots.
To educate employees and help facilitate the changing Spaceport culture, “7
Habits” personal mastery training of all civil service employees was
Through these efforts and others, KSC began the new millennium with a
reinvigorated sense of destiny and a clear plan for continuing excellence in
launch operations and technology development.