Cape Canaveral, Florida (IP) - The Boy Scouts have a new space flight badge that is awarded to Scouts who earn enough points in space science and the first two Scouts to earned the coveted badge will fly aboard the next space shuttle flight.
The boys names are Sylvestor Finootch and Robitusin Johnson who both live in the Houston, Texas area. Both boys are 13 years old and are Eagle Scouts.
Some equipment will have to be removed from the shuttle because Sylvestor weighs 471 pounds with dry clothes on. The pieces of equipment chosen to be removed are a redundant systems navigation computer, the drag chute, and the front landing gear.
NASA will apply a heavy load of grease to the front of the shuttle to lessen the chance of damaging the shuttle's nose section if a pick up truck they have chosen to drive under the front of the shuttle fails to get into place before the front end makes contact with the ground. Folks familiar with shuttle landings know that the front of the shuttle stays pointing slightly upward until just before the shuttle rolls to a complete stop.
Another feature technique being employed, to get the shuttle up safely, is the addition of two small strap on boosters added to the thiokol solid booster system. These are small boosters originally designed to augment the thrust aboard Delta 3 launch systems.
NASA is providing 200 pounds of candy bars and fast food hamburgers to keep the heavier of the two boys from going into junk food withdrawals while in orbit. The other boy will eat carrots and broccoli. One of the boys has a broken finger from where one of his jealous class mates punched him in the nose but that should not prevent him from flying.