Space crews say goodbye, shuttle departing Tuesday

Sep 08, 2009 By MARCIA DUNN , AP Aerospace Writer
In this image made from video provided by NASA astronaut John "Danny" Olivas, STS-128 mission specialist, center left, shakes hands and thanks the commander of the space station Russia's Federal Space Agency cosmonaut Gennady Padalka before the hatches between the orbiting shuttle and station close Monday Sept. 7, 2009. The shuttle will undock Tuesday. (AP Photo/NASA)

(AP) -- The farewell hugs and handshakes are over. Now all that's left for the crews of the space shuttle and space station is the release of the docking latches.

Discovery will pull away from the Tuesday afternoon, ending a resupply visit that spanned just over a week. The shuttle will bring home seven astronauts and a Buzz Lightyear doll that was launched last year.

The hatches between the spacecraft were closed late Monday.

NASA, meanwhile, is eyeing another piece of , this one a Chinese satellite fragment that could come too close to the space station Wednesday. It's part of a satellite that was blasted by a missile in 2007. Officials say the outpost probably will not need to steer clear.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: Europe sat-nav launch glitch linked to frozen pipe

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

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 ...

NASA analyzing junk that could threaten astronauts

Sep 02, 2009

(AP) -- A piece of space junk was drifting toward the shuttle-station complex and its 13 astronauts Wednesday, though NASA officials said the threat would not delay an upcoming spacewalk.

Recommended for you

Europe sat-nav launch glitch linked to frozen pipe

5 hours ago

A frozen fuel pipe in the upper stage of a Soyuz launcher likely caused the failure last month to place two European navigation satellites in orbit, a source close to the inquiry said Wednesday.

Cyanide ice in Titan's atmosphere

7 hours ago

Gigantic polar clouds of hydrogen cyanide roughly four times the area of the UK are part of the impressive atmospheric diversity of Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, a new study led by Leiden Observatory, ...

Video: Alleged meteor caught on Russian dash cam (again)

10 hours ago

Thanks to the ubiquity of dashboard-mounted video cameras in Russia yet another bright object has been spotted lighting up the sky over Siberia, this time a "meteor-like object" seen on the evening of Saturday, Sept. 27.

User comments : 0