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Safe Return Caps Successful Mission: Canada's Mobile Base System and Canadarm2 Ready to Continue Building the Space Station

Press Release From: Canadian Space Agency
Posted: Wednesday, June 19, 2002

Shuttle Endeavour and its crew safely returned to Earth today at 1:58 p.m., ending a 14-day mission. The highlight of the flight was the installation of a unique Canadian-built work platform called the Mobile Base System on the International Space Station.

During the mission, astronauts Franklin Chang-Diaz and Philippe Perrin also changed one of Canadarm2's seven joints, for the first time conducting repair work on the arm as it orbited 400 km above the Earth. The successful transplant has demonstrated that Canadarm2 is the most capable, flexible, unique robotics system ever deployed.

"Canada is famous around the world for advancing the state of space robotics," said Alan Rock, Industry Minister and Minister responsible for the Canadian Space Agency. "And the technology being developed for space is helping us back home, driving innovation in diverse fields, such as telemedicine systems that bring valuable medical expertise to remote regions of our country."

Spin-offs from the robotic technologies developed for space are also creating new robots for use in underground mines and in the operating room. For example, a team of engineers from MD Robotics, the prime contractor for Canadarm2, has developed "oArm", an advanced robotic device that will be used to perform complex neurosurgical procedures.

Next Milestones for Canada and the International Space Station Join Canadian scientists in July 2002 when OSTEO-2 and Protein Crystal Growth experiments are uploaded to the Station onboard STS-107. In April 2003 Canadian Space Agency Astronaut Steve MacLean will make his second trip to space on STS-115 and take his first spacewalk installing the next set of solar arrays on the International Space Station.

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For more information, contact:

Monique Billette
Senior Media Relations Officer
Canadian Space Agency
Tel.: (450) 926-4370
monique.billette@space.gc.ca

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