Landing Day Arrives For Space Shuttle Discovery

Press Release From: NASA HQ
Posted: Sunday, August 7, 2005


"We're looking forward to coming home," Commander Eileen Collins radioed to Mission Control upon crew wakeup at 8:30 p.m. EDT today.

Collins and her crewmates immediately began preparing the orbiter and themselves for landing. Their first landing opportunity is at Kennedy Space Center in Florida at 4:47 a.m. Monday. If weather prohibits landing on that orbit, they will have another opportunity about 90 minutes later.

If the crew gets the go-ahead from Mission Control for the first landing opportunity, Collins and Pilot Jim Kelly will execute an engine burn that drops Discovery from orbit at 3:40 a.m.

STS-114, dubbed the most photographed spaceflight, set a new precedent for future test flights. Never-before-seen imagery aided engineers in assessing the Shuttle's external tank performance and ensuring a safe heat shield for return to Earth.

A mission of firsts, STS-114 carried the Orbiter's Boom Sensor System on its maiden flight, performed the first back-flip in spaceflight and successfully completed a first-of-its-kind repair to the Shuttle, making spacewalk history. Discovery was the first Space Shuttle to visit the Station since late 2002.

The two crews paid tribute to the astronauts and cosmonauts who have given their lives for space exploration.

Listen to a podcast from space. Mission Steve Robinson, on his last day in space, gives a glimpse of his experience on a historic spacewalk and other mission events.

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