Shuttle, space station crews part after 8 days

Mar 25, 2009
In this image from NASA Television, the crews from the space shuttle and international space station wave after their talk with President Barack Obama via TV downlink Tuesday, March 24, 2009. Front row from left Japan Aerospace Exporation Agency astronaut Koichi Wakata, Greg Chamitoff, Mike Fincke and Sndra Magnus. Center row Lee Archambault, Tony Antonelli and Joseph Acaba. Back row Richard Arnold, Steve Swanson and John Phillip. (AP Photo/NASA TV)

(AP) -- After eight days together, it's time for the space shuttle and space station crews to say goodbye.

The hatches between the linked will be sealed early Wednesday afternoon. Three hours later, Discovery will undock.

Discovery will be bringing back five months' worth of science experiments from the . The blood, urine and saliva samples need to be kept cold for as long as possible, and will remain in the station freezer until the last possible moment.

The also is bringing back four to five liters of recycled water made from astronauts' urine and condensation. wants to make sure the water is safe before space station start drinking it up there.

Discovery and its crew of seven are due back in Florida on Saturday.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: Mysteries of space dust revealed

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Shuttle Discovery zooms toward space station

Mar 17, 2009

(AP) -- With a kick of its rocket thrusters, space shuttle Discovery zoomed to the international space station Tuesday to deliver one last set of solar wings that should bring the orbiting complex to full ...

Discovery Separates From Space Station

Aug 06, 2005

After more than a week of working together in space, the Space Shuttle Discovery and International Space Station crews bid each other farewell tonight. Space Shuttle Discovery undocked from the International Spa ...

Recommended for you

Mysteries of space dust revealed

Aug 29, 2014

The first analysis of space dust collected by a special collector onboard NASA's Stardust mission and sent back to Earth for study in 2006 suggests the tiny specks open a door to studying the origins of the ...

A guide to the 2014 Neptune opposition season

Aug 29, 2014

Never seen Neptune? Now is a good time to try, as the outermost ice giant world reaches opposition this weekend at 14:00 Universal Time (UT) or 10:00 AM EDT on Friday, August 29th. This means that the distant ...

Informing NASA's Asteroid Initiative: A citizen forum

Aug 28, 2014

In its history, the Earth has been repeatedly struck by asteroids, large chunks of rock from space that can cause considerable damage in a collision. Can we—or should we—try to protect Earth from potentially ...

Image: Rosetta's comet looms

Aug 28, 2014

Wow! Rosetta is getting ever-closer to its target comet by the day. This navigation camera shot from Aug. 23 shows that the spacecraft is so close to Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko that it's difficult to ...

User comments : 0