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Dextre, One Step Closer to the International Space Station

Press Release From: Canadian Space Agency
Posted: Wednesday, June 27, 2007

LONGUEUIL, QUEBEC--The Canadian Space Agency is proud to announce that Dextre, the third and final element of the Mobile Servicing System which is part of Canada's contribution to the International Space Station (ISS), was delivered to NASA's Kennedy Space Centre (KSC) in Florida last week. Dextre, a two-armed robot essential for maintaining and servicing the ISS and developed by MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. (MDA), left their facility in Brampton, Ontario, on June 18 for the Kennedy Space Centre (KSC) in Florida.

At KSC, Dextre will be housed in the Space Station Processing Facility and will undergo a series of final flight verification tests until it is ready to be launched to the space station as part of Mission STS-123 in February 2008.

The Mobile Servicing System is made up of a Mobile Base System on which Canadarm2 is transported along the length of the ISS. As the final element, Dextre will provide increased versatility performing ISS maintenance activities while attached to the end of Canadarm2. With 32 degrees of freedom, it will be able to do just about any finer maintenance task that would normally be accomplished during spacewalks performed by astronauts on the International Space Station.

In 1998, the adventure of the International Space Station, involving 13 countries from around the world, began. Since then, three Canadian astronauts have visited the ISS and a fourth, Dave Williams, is planned to visit in August. The Canadarm2 and the Mobile Base have been successfully delivered and installed on the ISS, in 2001 and 2002 respectively, and are essential tools for all space station assembly missions. As we look up into the night sky, all Canadians should be proud of Canada's achievements in space knowing that without our contribution, construction of the ISS wouldn't have been possible.

For more information on Dextre, pictures of its voyage and housing at KSC, as well as information on Canada's Mobile Servicing System, visit the CSA website at: http://www.space.gc.ca/asc/eng/iss/canada.asp.

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