Space shuttle undocks from space station

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) -- Space shuttle Discovery has left the international space station.

Discovery undocked from the space station Tuesday afternoon as the two craft soared over China. Its departure ended more than a week of linked flight, in which tons of supplies and equipment were dropped off. The shuttle and its crew of seven are due back on Earth on Thursday.

Six were left behind on the orbiting outpost to continue their own lengthy missions.

The two crews embraced and said goodbye late Monday.

NASA, meanwhile, says it will not have to move the space station out of the way of a piece of space junk that will come within 15 miles Wednesday. It's a fragment from a Chinese satellite that was blasted by a missile two years ago.

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: Witness: Space tourism rocket explodes in desert

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 ...

Recommended for you

Cassini sees sunny seas on Titan

Oct 30, 2014

(Phys.org) —As it soared past Saturn's large moon Titan recently, NASA's Cassini spacecraft caught a glimpse of bright sunlight reflecting off hydrocarbon seas.

Is space tourism safe or do civilians risk health effects?

Oct 30, 2014

Several companies are developing spacecraft designed to take ordinary citizens, not astronauts, on short trips into space. "Space tourism" and short periods of weightlessness appear to be safe for most individuals ...

An unmanned rocket exploded. So what?

Oct 30, 2014

Sputnik was launched more than 50 years ago. Since then we have seen missions launched to Mercury, Mars and to all the planets within the solar system. We have sent a dozen men to the moon and many more to ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.