Space Shuttle Atlantis Arrives at Launch Pad

Nov 12, 2007

After safely reaching its launch pad Saturday at NASA's Kennedy Space Center, the space shuttle Atlantis now awaits its next major milestone for the upcoming STS-122 mission. The full launch dress rehearsal is scheduled from Nov. 18 to 20 at Kennedy.

The shuttle arrived at the pad about 11 a.m. EST Saturday on top of a giant vehicle called the crawler-transporter. The crawler-transporter began carrying Atlantis out of Kennedy's Vehicle Assembly Building at 4:43 a.m., traveling less than 1 mph during the 3.4 mile journey. Atlantis achieved hard down and was firmly on the launch pad at 11:51 a.m.

Atlantis is targeted to launch Dec. 6 on an 11-day mission to the International Space Station. The shuttle's seven crew members will deliver the European Space Agency's Columbus Laboratory to the International Space Station and bring a new crew member to the station and return another to Earth.

Atlantis’ crew members are Commander Steve Frick, Pilot Alan Poindexter and mission specialists Leland Melvin, Rex Walheim, Stanley Love, and Hans Schlegel and Léopold Eyharts of the European Space Agency. Eyharts will replace current Expedition 16 Flight Engineer Daniel Tani. Eyharts will return to Earth aboard STS-123, which is targeted to launch Feb. 14, 2008.Tani will return to Earth aboard Atlantis. He launched to the station with the STS-120 crew.

The STS-122 astronauts and ground crews will participate in a launch dress rehearsal, known as the terminal countdown demonstration test, or TCDT. The test provides each shuttle crew with an opportunity to participate in various simulated countdown activities, including equipment familiarization and emergency training. STS-122 is the 121st space shuttle flight, the 29th flight for space shuttle Atlantis and the 24th flight to the station.

Source: NASA

Explore further: The source of the sky's X-ray glow

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Q&A: Saying goodbye to the space shuttle

Jul 11, 2011

With the final launch of the Atlantis, NASA retires its space shuttle program. We spoke to Professor Chris Damaren of the University of Toronto Institute for Aerospace Studies about the end of an era in manned ...

Recommended for you

The source of the sky's X-ray glow

14 hours ago

In findings that help astrophysicists understand our corner of the galaxy, an international research team has shown that the soft X-ray glow blanketing the sky comes from both inside and outside the solar system.

End dawns for Europe's space cargo delivery role

23 hours ago

Europe will close an important chapter in its space flight history Tuesday, launching the fifth and final robot ship it had pledged for lifeline deliveries to the International Space Station.

Giant crater in Russia's far north sparks mystery

Jul 26, 2014

A vast crater discovered in a remote region of Siberia known to locals as "the end of the world" is causing a sensation in Russia, with a group of scientists being sent to investigate.

NASA Mars spacecraft prepare for close comet flyby

Jul 26, 2014

NASA is taking steps to protect its Mars orbiters, while preserving opportunities to gather valuable scientific data, as Comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring heads toward a close flyby of Mars on Oct. 19.

Bacteria manipulate salt to build shelters to hibernate

Jul 25, 2014

For the first time, Spanish researchers have detected an unknown interaction between microorganisms and salt. When Escherichia coli cells are introduced into a droplet of salt water and is left to dry, b ...

How do we terraform Venus?

Jul 25, 2014

It might be possible to terraform Venus some day, when our technology gets good enough. The challenges for Venus are totally different than for Mars. How will we need to fix Venus?

User comments : 0