INTRODUCTION: The launch of the American space shuttle, due for Friday (10 April), had to be postponed because of problems with a computer.
GV Control centre at Kennedy Space Centre.
SV Astronauts entering shuttle as officials watch from control centre. (3 SHOTS)
GV Officials monitoring shuttle. (2 SHOTS)
GV NASA control centre as countdown is stopped.
GV Two NASA flight directors announcing postponement of launch and explanation of problems.
SV Astronauts leaving shuttle. (3 SHOTS)
SPEECH ON FILM (TRANSCRIPT)
CONTROLLER: "This is Shuttle Launch Control at T minus 20 minutes and holding. The launch director George Page and centre director Dick Smith have just announced that we will scrub the launch attempt for today. We will stop the clock at probably the T minus 9 minutes point and send out a crew to open the hatch of the orbiter and take the crew back to the astronaut quarters. The earliest time in which we could possibly reschedule the launch will be for Sunday morning at 6.50 am. What this is dependent on of course is resolution of the problem which we have had it today's launch attempt. That problem has not been traced to whether it is a strictly software problem or whether it is possibly something to do with the hardware. What has occurred is, has been that there are five flight computers on board the orbiter.
...The normal configuration for a launch is that four of them are programmed for the advance run and the fifth has a backup programme in it. Each time as we went down the countdown there was an inability of the backup computer to communicate properly with the other four general purpose computers."
EUROVISION SATELLITE TELERECORDING
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Background: INTRODUCTION: The launch of the American space shuttle, due for Friday (10 April), had to be postponed because of problems with a computer. One of the five computers on board the world's first reuseable space ship refused to communicate with the others -- so the launch was tentatively rescheduled for Sunday morning (12 April).
SYNOPSIS: At the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, astronauts John Young and Robert Crippen spent more than six hours in a horizontal position waiting for take-off. After they'd entered the shuttle, dozens of experts investigated hundreds of possible faults but failed to pin down the problem that was preventing the maiden flight from taking place. They said it could only be a tiny part that had gone wrong -- but it forced them to announce the postponement.
As the two disappointed astronauts returned to their quarters, scientists admitted that the launch might have to be delayed for weeks. If it turned out that an error in the computer programme had been made, the whole programme would have to be re-thought -- and that could take a long time. The experts were planning to work non-stop over the next 24 hours trying to trace the fault, in the hope that it was mechanical or electrical, and not something more serious.