NASA Says Atlantis Countdown Is Trouble-Free

Shuttle managers say no problems have cropped up, as the countdown continues for tomorrow afternoon’s scheduled launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis. David Pitman reports.

The shuttle and its crew of six will deliver a Russian compartment to the International Space Station.  ISS Payload Manager Robbie Ashley says the chamber is filled with 3,000 pounds of supplies.

“A lot of if it is crew provisions — food, other crew supplies.  Some of it is station hardware.  It’s a mixed bag.  There are several laptop computers going up.”

Ashley says once all that cargo is removed, the Russian module will accommodate experiment racks and workstations.

“It will be able to perform science in these workstations.  As well as serve as a replacement, or fourth, docking port on the Russian segment.  So future Soyuz and Progress vehicles will be able to dock there as one of the Russian segment ports.”

Those Russian vehicles, along with flights from commercial companies, will take supplies to the ISS, once the shuttle is retired.  There’s 70 percent chance that Friday’s weather at Cape Canaveral will cooperate with the launch of Atlantis, set for 1:20 p.m., Houston time.  This 12-day trip is Atlantis’ final journey.  Two more shuttle flights remain.


David Pitman

David Pitman

Host, Morning Edition

Hi there. I’m glad you found me. Let me take a moment to answer some of the questions you might have about me and my job. I have worked as Morning Edition Host and reporter at News 88.7 since August of 2009. Previously, I hosted Morning Edition at WMFE in...

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