Answers Your Questions
| From: Dewey Thompson, of Cleveland,
To: Wayne Hale, flight director
Question: I know the shuttle is basically a glider when it returns to Earth, as it has no fuel left. Would it be able to return safely if the crew were unable to unload the payload bay while in orbit, or would the added weight prevent a safe return?
Answer: Great question! We always are prepared to return at any time in any condition. Bringing the payload back is something we would rather not do, but it is always an option that is safe to do.