NASA extends Discovery shuttle mission by a day

March 1, 2011

The US space shuttle Discovery's mission to the International Space Station has been extended by one day, and will now return to Earth on March 8, NASA said.

"The extension day will be devoted to emptying the Permanent Multipurpose Module and moving supplies between Discovery and station," said in a tweet.

The shuttle blasted off from Kennedy Space Center on February 24, on its final mission into orbit before entering retirement. Discovery is the first of three US shuttles set to become museum pieces later this year.

Endeavour is to lift off on April 19 followed by Atlantis on June 28, marking the official end of the US space shuttle program after 30 years.

The Discovery shuttle's mission now will last 12 days, with a second spacewalk planned for Wednesday.

A first to install preparations for the addition of a permanent storage module was completed Monday.

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