Fri, Jul 27, 2007
Flight Will Include at Least Three Spacewalks
On Thursday, National Aeronautic and Space Administration
managers set August 7 as the official launch date for Space Shuttle
Endeavour's STS-118 mission to the International Space Station.
Liftoff from the Kennedy Space Center is scheduled for 7:02 p.m.
Endeavour's launch date was announced following the traditional
Flight Readiness Review at Kennedy. During the two-day meeting, top
NASA and contractor managers assessed any risks associated with the
mission and determined that the shuttle's equipment, support
systems and procedures are ready for flight.
Commander Scott Kelly and his six crewmates are scheduled to
arrive at Kennedy at 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 3, for final launch
preparations. The countdown is scheduled to begin at 9 p.m.
Saturday, Aug. 4.
During the 11-day mission, Endeavour's crew will add another
truss segment to the expanding station, install a new gyroscope on
the complex and add an external spare parts platform. The flight
will include at least three spacewalks.
The crew will debut a new system that enables docked shuttles to
draw electrical power from the station to extend visits to the
outpost. If this system functions as expected, three additional
days will be added to the STS-118 mission.
Joining Kelly on the flight will be Pilot Charlie Hobaugh and
Mission Specialists Tracy Caldwell, Rick Mastracchio, Barbara R.
Morgan, Alvin Drew and Canadian Space Agency astronaut Dave
The mission will be Endeavour's first flight in more than four
and a half years. The spacecraft has undergone extensive
modifications, including the addition of safety upgrades already
added to shuttles Discovery and Atlantis.
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