Space Shuttle Crew Begins First Full Day in Orbit

By SpaceRef Editor
November 24, 2002
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Endeavour’s crew was awakened at 8:50 a.m. today to begin its first full day in orbit, a day dedicated to preparations for Monday’s docking to the International Space Station. As the crew awoke, Endeavour and the station were separated by about 2,700 miles, with Endeavour slightly below and behind the ISS.

Onboard the station, the Expedition Five crew, Commander Valery Korzun, NASA ISS Science Officer Peggy Whitson and Flight Engineer Sergei Treschev, awakened at 7:45 a.m. to continue preparations for the arrival of Endeavour, and their replacement crew.

In preparation for Monday’s docking, Endeavour’s crew – Commander Jim Wetherbee, Pilot Paul Lockhart, Mission Specialists Mike Lopez-Alegria and John Herrington, and the Expedition Six crew Commander Ken Bowersox, NASA ISS science officer Don Pettit and flight engineer Nikolai Budarin – will verify operation of the equipment used during docking. The centerline camera will be installed in the docking system, the orbiter docking system ring will be extended and a variety of handheld cameras and distance-measuring devices will be checked out. In addition, Lopez-Alegria and Herrington will inspect and checkout the spacesuits they will wear during three scheduled spacewalks to install and outfit the P1 truss segment.

Monday’s docking to the International Space Station is scheduled to occur about 3:26 p.m. central time and sets the stage for those three spacewalks to be conducted over a period of five days. The P1 truss is the third such segment to be launched this year, one of 11 truss segments that will form the structural backbone of the station. The trusses will also provide cooling and support for new solar arrays, which will be delivered to the station next year.

At 6:55 p.m., Bowersox, Budarin and Pettit will talk with reporters from USA Today and AP Radio News. The trio will become the sixth resident crew to live and work in space aboard the International Space Station, replacing the current Expedition Five residents who are beginning their 173rd day in space today.

SpaceRef staff editor.