Tuesday, February 22, 2011

STS-133 Gets Ready for Launch

Night view of Discovery on Pad 39A.

The Countdown has started. Mission STS-133 on shuttle Discovery is set to launch on Thursday, February 24th at 2:50 pm MST. This last mission for the Discovery will take supplies in the Express Logistics Carrier 4 to the International Space Station. The Cargo container was previously known as the LEONARDO Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM). It is planned to leave the module attached to the station to act as an additional storage area and space for some experiments.

T-38 parking zone.

The crew of STS-133 arrived at Kennedy Space Center in a small squadron of T-38 jets. Astronauts use the jet trainers as rapid transit across the country during their busy training schedule. Now they'll prepare for the actual launch this week.

Meet R2.

Although Discovery isn't taking any human crewmembers to the ISS, it is carrying a passenger. R2, or Robonaut 2, will become a permanent inhabitant of the ISS helping the astronauts with their tasks. It's task to help scientists and engineers learn how humanoid robots can act in microgravity to help human crews explore space.

As this is Discovery's last space trip, it is one to watch and wonder.

No comments: