Science and Technology News

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

It's a Unanimous "Go" for Endeavour

The Space Shuttle Program Mission Management Team voted unanimously to proceed toward Endeavour's scheduled liftoff at 3:47 p.m. EDT Friday. Mike Moses, chair of the Prelaunch Mission Management team, reported that it was a very short meeting and everything is in great shape and ready to go.

"We're ready to go and we're looking forward to Friday's launch," Moses said.

Mike Leinbach, shuttle launch director said, "The countdown for Endeavour's final mission is going extremely well. The launch pad right now is cleared in preparation for loading the cryogenics fuels for the fuel cell system."

"We're not working any significant issues at all … the teams are upbeat about the mission and the President's visit," said Leinbach. "We're ready to go and right now looking forward to an on-time launch Friday afternoon."

The forecast calls for an 80 percent chance of favorable conditions at launch time, according to Shuttle Weather Officer Kathy Winters. The only concern for launch may be the crosswinds at the Shuttle Landing Facility.

The Rotating Service Structure (RSS) is scheduled to be retracted at 7 p.m. tomorrow night but may be delayed because of possible storm activity over the center. Teams will have about a four hour leeway for the storms to clear out to rollback the RSS with no affect on Friday morning's external tank fueling, now planned for 6:22 a.m.

Endeavour is headed to the International Space Station on a 14-day mission to deliver the Express Logistics Carrier-3, Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer-2 (AMS), a high-pressure gas tank and additional spare parts for the Dextre robotic helper.

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