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STS-116 Leaves New Truss Segment, Crew Member With Station

Status Report From: Johnson Space Center
Posted: Tuesday, December 19, 2006

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The STS-116 crew’s stay at the International Space Station came to an end Tuesday when Space Shuttle Discovery undocked at 5:10 p.m. EST. During its eight-day visit, the STS-116 crew added a new truss segment to the station, delivered a new crew member and rewired the orbital outpost’s power system.

The STS-116 crew conducted three spacewalks to install the P5 integrated truss segment and rewire the station’s power system. The P5 spacer segment’s attachment to the P4 sets the stage for the relocation of the P6 and its set of solar arrays. The rewiring activities put the station’s power system in a permanent setup. A fourth spacewalk was conducted to assist in the retraction of the troublesome port solar array on the P6.

Astronaut Sunita Williams, who arrived at the station with the STS-116 mission, replaced European Space Agency Astronaut Thomas Reiter on the Expedition 14 crew at midnight Tuesday, Dec. 12. Williams will remain a member of Expedition 14 until Commander Michael Lopez-Alegria and Flight Engineer Mikhail Tyurin are relieved by Expedition 15 in March 2007. Williams will finish her remaining time of her six-month tour of duty on the station as a member of Expedition 15. Reiter will return to Earth with STS-116.

Also, the STS-116 and Expedition 14 crews worked together to transfer 4,292 pounds of supplies and equipment delivered to the station by Discovery. The two crews have also transferred 3,725 pounds of cargo that will return to Earth with STS-116.

STS-117 is scheduled to visit the station in March.

NASA and the Russian Federal Space Agency have named two astronauts and two cosmonauts to the next International Space Station crew, known as Expedition 15. Astronauts Clayton Anderson and Daniel Tani will travel to the station next year and work as flight engineers. Cosmonauts Fyodor Yurchikhin and Dr. Oleg Kotov will spend six months aboard the orbiting laboratory.

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