Here's the teal deer version: HASP is a big machine that's going to space. Integration is where we get to plug GOAT into HASP to see if it works and make sure we won't mess up HASP. If GOAT can't plug into HASP by the end of the week, the thing we've been building for a year won't go to space.
Here's the long version:
Integration is a week long process at the NASA Columbia Scientific Ballooning Facility in Palestine. TX. On Sunday July 30th I'll "wake up" at 4 AM and Munir, HDan and I will meet at airport at 4:45 AM. (It makes me tired just typing that.)
We will land in Houston at 7:35 AM. (What a nonsense time to be arriving somewhere.)
We will hang out in the airport until Jimmy arrives at 9:40 AM. We'll round up the luggage, find some caffeine and pick up our dope mini-van.
Once Jimmy lands, we will get in the rental car and go see what Houston, TX has to offer in the way of lunch/tourism. Some of my Houston friends have given me tips. The best tip being, "Assume it take 30 minutes to go anywhere."
We will return at 2 PM to pick up DanKMemes from outside the airport. Then we will drive 2 hrs 41 minutes-ish to Palestine, TX. Since it's Sunday everything will be closed except for Walmart but we'll be double checking the payload and making sure everything is ready to go for Monday...."Full Engineering Check-in" style.
It will be about....100 degrees (Fahrenheit) and sunny every day. It looks like it will be panic punctuated with boredom. (If we're lucky. If we're not lucky it'll be mostly panic.)
We're going to have a great time!!
Dr. Guzik says, "Monday, July 31: First-come, first-served student payload integration starting at 9:00 am.
Tuesday, August 1: First-come, first-served student payload integration continues. Cut-off time is 6:00 pm
Thursday, August 3: Payload issue resolution. Cut-off time is 6:00 pm
We're going to try to get out to CSBF as early as we can because Dr. Guzik ALSO says, "Don’t be left holding your payload, stuttering while we close the door in your face Tuesday 8/1 at 6:00 pm. Come early to integration and be ready early."
Monday or Tuesday, whenever we can get scheduled, we'll be plugging GOAT into HASP and showing the HASP personnel that everything works and that it isn't using too much power, shorting, or doing anything that might endanger other payloads.
Wednesday will be a full T/V test where the entire system is rolled into a giant vacuum that will get us to flight pressure. First they will chill the payloads to about - 40 degrees C (conveniently -40 F) for two hours and then they will bring it up to about 50 degrees C (122 F) for longer. Our payload needs to survive this test with all systems running. If it doesn't work, or if it breaks, we have Thursday to fix it, fix it, fix it. On Friday we retest. If everything checks out then we box it up and we mail our payload to Fort Sumner for flight. If something small goes kaput we can take it home. If everything is terrible, we don't fly. Game over.
We'll leave Palestine on Saturday June 5th at about 11 am.
RDU folks fly out at 3:30 PM.
Koris at 3:00 PM.
Jimmy at 3:05 PM.
Generally at this stage in a project I'm pretty stressed and I feel like I have an idea of what to expect. I don't know if it's the RAVS talking or what but I'm not feeling any which-a-way about this right now. Ask me again on Sunday at 4 AM!
ETA: My personal carry on item will be a bench power supply.