Shuttle Discovery launched on Saturday. This afternoon — right on schedule — word came from Discovery Commander Mark Kelly:
“Houston and Station, capture confirmed. Docking confirmed at 1:03 p.m. Central. International Space Shuttle is in free drift. Copy that, we see the flashing lights.”
Astronauts will conduct three spacewalks, tomorrow, Thursday and Sunday, to continue building the ISS.
NASA spokesman Bill Jeffs says the shuttle is on a fourteen day mission to transport and install the Japanese pressurized module lab:
“The Japanese Research Laboratory is a large tour bus-sized module. It will house experiments in a number of disciplines including space medicine, biology, earth observations, biotechnology and communications research.”
The shuttle is scheduled to remain docked for nine days before making the return trip.
The next mission, in October, will be the Hubble servicing mission. It’s the final mission to upgrade the Hubble Space Telescope.
Laurie Johnson. KUHF- Houston Public Radio News.