Status Report

NASA Space Shuttle Processing Status 11 March 2005

By SpaceRef Editor
March 11, 2005
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Mission: STS-114 – 17th ISS Flight (LF1) – Multi-Purpose Logistics

Vehicle: Discovery (OV-103)

Location: Orbiter Processing Facility Bay 3

Launch Date: Launch Planning Window May 15 – June 3, 2005

Launch Pad: 39B

Crew: Collins, Kelly, Noguchi, Robinson, Thomas, Lawrence and Camarda

Inclination/Orbit Altitude: 51.6 degrees/122 nautical miles

Final processing work continues in Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF)
bay 3 on orbiter Discovery for its Return to Flight mission,
designated STS-114, to the International Space Station. In
preparation for the rollover to the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB)
this month, technicians are completing final closeouts of the payload
bay and cleaning it for the final closing of its doors next week.

Seal installations and cycle checks continue on the main and nose
landing gear doors. All work associated with the Rudder Speed Brake
is complete for flight, including the final strip and tab
installations, and painting and Thermal Protection System blanket
bonding on the vertical stabilizer.

In the VAB, final closeouts of both the External Tank and the Solid
Rocket Boosters (SRBs) continue in preparation for orbiter rollover
and Discovery being mated, or attached, to the tank. The upgraded SRB
bolt catchers were installed this week. A bolt catcher is a vertical
bolt mechanism at the forward end that attaches each booster to the
tank. At approximately two minutes into launch, SRB separation begins
when pyrotechnic devices fire to break the 25-inch, 62-pound steel
bolts. One half of the bolt is caught in canister-like “bolt
catchers” located on the tank; the other half remains with the
boosters. Discovery is flying with a modified bolt catcher, which was
upgraded from a two-piece welded design to a one-piece, machine-made
design. Eliminating the weld makes a structurally stronger bolt
catcher design.

Installation of resupply stowage racks into the Multi-Purpose
Logistics Module Raffaello in preparation for flight began on March 4
and is scheduled to be complete next week. The Human Research
Facility-2 (HRF-2) science rack was installed on Tuesday and
post-installation closeouts were completed the next day. Raffaello
will hold a variety of supplies including food, clothing and spare
parts for the Space Station. The HRF-2 will provide additional
biomedical instrumentation and research capabilities for the Station
and will be installed in the U.S. Laboratory, Destiny.

Mission: STS-121 – 18th ISS Flight (ULF1) – Multi-Purpose Logistics
Module/Crew Rotation

Vehicle: Atlantis (OV-104)

Location: Orbiter Processing Facility Bay 1

Launch Date: Launch Planning Window July 12 – July 31, 2005

Launch Pad: 39B

Crew: Lindsey, Kelly, Sellers, Fossum, Nowak and Wilson

Inclination/Orbit Altitude: 51.6 degrees/122 nautical miles

Technicians continue processing Atlantis in OPF bay 1 for its mission,
designated STS-121, to the International Space Station. The
right-hand Orbital Maneuvering System (OMS) pod was removed Wednesday
and returned to the Hypergol Maintenance Facility. The pod was
removed due to time and cycle requirements for the pod’s thruster.
Another OMS pod will be delivered next month for installation.

Checkout and installation of the four Manipulator Positioning
Mechanisms that will hold an Orbiter Boom Sensor System (OBSS) on the
starboard side of Atlantis’ payload bay is under way. The
50-foot-long OBSS will attach to the Remote Manipulator System, or
Shuttle robotic arm, and is one of the new safety measures for Return
to Flight. It equips the orbiter with cameras and laser systems to
inspect the Shuttle’s Thermal Protection System while in space.

NASA’s second redesigned Space Shuttle External Tank, designated for
use on mission STS-121, arrived at Port Canaveral Wednesday,
following a 900-mile journey at sea from the Michoud Assembly
Facility in New Orleans by NASA’s Solid Rocket Booster retrieval ship
Freedom Star. Late next week, tugs will bring the barge to KSC where
the tank will be offloaded and transported to the Vehicle Assembly

Endeavour (OV-105)

Endeavour is in its Orbiter Major Modification period, which began in
December 2003.

Previous Space Shuttle processing status reports are available on the
Internet at:

SpaceRef staff editor.