5169073 story Lightning Strikes Delay Shuttle Launch 50 Posted by timothy on Saturday July 11, 2009 @02:28PM from the hey-we've-all-got-problems dept. Tisha_AH writes "The Space Shuttle has had its launch delayed for inspection after several lightning strikes to the launch tower and/or shuttle. Several different technologies have been applied by NASA to divert the strike energy to ground potentials with Air Terminals (lightning rods), surge protectors or the often-disputed use of static dissipator brushes. One technology that appears promising is to cause a lightning strike (to a safe location) through the use of short pulsed ultraviolet lasers. Maybe in the future, once the technology matures, we may find widespread use of UV lasers to protect space launch vehicles, antenna towers or buildings."