Thursday, September 23, 2010

Discovery on the Pad

The Discovery stack on Pad 39A.

Engineers and technicians at the Kennedy Space Center are testing and monitoring all the systems of the space shuttle Discovery, as it sits on launch pad 39A. Discovery is scheduled to blast off on November 1st, on mission STS-133. This is Discovery's last scheduled mission, and it will be a sad day indeed when this shuttle is retired.

STS-133 will bring supplies and backup equipment to the International Space Station. Commander Steve Lindsey and shuttle pilot Eric Boe will lead mission specialists Alvin Drew, Tim Kopra, Michael Barratt, and Nicole Stott to the ISS on it's last mission.

STS-133 Patch Logo.

Along for the ride on Discovery is an unusual contraption. Called Robonaut-2 (R-2), this is the first humanoid robot to go into space and visit the station. R2 will stay on the ISS to perform experiments and pave the way for space droids.

R2 joins a crew meeting.

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