Status Report

STS-102 Status Report #15 – 15 Mar 2001 – 7:00 AM CST

By SpaceRef Editor
March 15, 2001
Filed under ,

Aboard the International Space Station today, astronauts and
cosmonauts assembled and partially activated a key piece of construction
equipment – the control station for a 58-foot-long robot arm that will be
delivered to the station next month.

Expedition Two Flight Engineers Jim Voss and Susan Helms spent most of
their workday installing the Space Station Remote Manipulator System
workstation inside the Destiny laboratory. They activated a portion of
the system that will be used to route television pictures from docked
space shuttles to the control station for use by arm operators. The
remaining activation work will start after Discovery undocks Saturday

The Canadian-built appendage will be delivered on the STS-100 mission
— set to launch April 19 – and attached to the Lab Cradle Assembly that
Voss and Helms bolted to the side of the Destiny laboratory module
during their space walk Sunday. The station arm’s first job will be to
install the airlock on STS-104, set for launch this June.

Load master Andy Thomas coordinated the transfer of equipment,
supplies, trash and luggage between the station and shuttle with the help of
Expedition Two Commander Yury Usachev and fellow Mission Specialist Paul
Richards. All five tons of equipment and supplies delivered aboard the
Leonardo module have been transferred to the station. The crew is now
concentrating on packing trash, unneeded equipment and luggage in the
Italian-built Multipurpose Logistics Module for return to Earth.

Commander Jim Wetherbee and Pilot Jim Kelly answered questions posed by
reporters in the area of Burlington, Iowa, Kelly’s hometown. Wetherbee,
Expedition One Commander Bill Shepherd, Usachev and Thomas talked with
school children in Dundee, Scotland, who are following the mission
because the crew is carrying a piece of the sailing research ship RRS
Discovery launched 100 years ago at Dundee.

The astronauts and cosmonauts also took some time off to rest after a
busy week, and to continue handing over duties aboard the scientific

The station and shuttle are orbiting in fine fashion at an altitude of
240 statute miles following a 50-minute long series of reboost
maneuvers. The gentle, repeated firings of Discovery’s smallest steering jets
took place a day earlier than originally planned to ensure that the
complex would remain clear of a piece of equipment that floated free during
the mission’s first spacewalk. Further tracking has shown that the
10.5-pound Portable Foot Restraint Attachment Device is about 20 miles
below and in front of the shuttle-station complex. Two more reboosts for
the station are planned Friday and Saturday.

The next Mission Control Center status report will be issued Thursday

SpaceRef staff editor.