Nacogdoches Lake Texas
August 3, 2011 by USA Post
The spherical tank, which is about four feet in diameter, is stuck in the mud beside Lake Nacogdoches.
More than 40 tons of debris fell on a large swath of eastern Texas and Louisiana as Columbia disintegrated during re-entry in February 2003, killing all seven astronauts.
Lisa Malone, a spokesman for NASA’s Kennedy Center, said the tank was part of the Columbia system producing power fuel cell.
The debris is not hazardous to the public, he said.
NASA is working with local authorities to recover the deposit. Will be returned to KSC and stored with other Columbia debris in the building of the agency vehicle assembly.
Shuttle orbiter has three fuel cells that combine hydrogen and liquid oxygen to generate electricity to operate the systems of the spacecraft. Drinking water is a byproduct.
The wreckage was found on Monday are believed to either a hydrogen atom or liquid oxygen tank liquid.
The state of Texas is experiencing the driest seven-month history. The drought has reduced the water level in Lake Nacogdoches considerably, raising the possibility that more residues of Columbia could be discovered.
Columbia Accident investigators said the 1.67 pounds a piece of insulating foam separated from the shuttle’s external tank during launch, hitting a six of 10-inch hole in the left wing of the ship.
The damage was not detected during a scientific mission for 16 days. Hot gases blowing through the hole during reentry, and the shuttle was destroyed.
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