Sunday, 27 February 2011
Docked over Australia
The two spacecraft were flying about 220 miles above western Australia at the time they docked.
Discovery was the first space shuttle to dock to a space station when it docked to Russia’s Mir station on mission STS-91 on June 4, 1998. Discovery also was the first shuttle to dock to the International Space Station on STS-96 on May 29, 1999. This was Discovery’s 13th and final docking to the space station.
Discovery crew board Space Ststion
The shuttle and station crews opened hatches at 4:16 p.m. Discovery’s crew of Lindsey, Pilot Eric Boe, and Mission Specialists Alvin Drew, Steve Bowen, Mike Barratt and Nicole Stott joined Expedition 26 Commander Scott Kelly and Flight Engineers Oleg Skripochka, Alexander Kaleri, Dmitry Kondratyev, Paolo Nespoli, and Cady Coleman
Thursday, 24 February 2011
Shuttle Mission STS-133
Mission STS-133 is to deliver essential equipment to the International Space Station. The six astronauts are led by Commander Steve Lindsey and Pilot Eric Boe, who are in the two forward seats on the flight deck with Mission Specialists Alvin Drew and Nicole Stott sitting behind them. On the lower level or middeck are astronauts Steve Bowen and Michael Barratt.
Final Flight of Discovery
Following the STS-133 mission, Discovery will be the first of the shuttle fleet to retire.
STS-133 Commander Steve Lindsey said “Besides the excitement of completing the International Space Station and all the things we do, I hope people get a sense of the history of what the shuttle is and what we’ve done and what’s ending. Because they’ll probably never see anything like it flying again.”
Shuttle Discovery landing
Shuttle Discovery is returning to Earth on March 7, 2011, with a target landing time of 12:44 p.m. EST, at the Kennedy Space Center, when it will have completed eleven days in space.
Wednesday, 23 February 2011
Weather forecast good
The weather at the launch site remains exceptional with only a 20 percent chance that weather will be prohibitive at launch time. The only slight issue may be a localized off-shore shower in the late afternoon. The forecast during tanking is also looking good.
NASA TV Coverage
At 7:15 a.m. EST NASA TV will begin coverage of the fueling of the external tank. Launch coverage for Discovery's final mission to the International Space Station will begin at 11:30 a.m.
Saturday, 19 February 2011
Review of test results
Managers, engineers and contractors went over the detailed analysis and testing performed on the support beams of Discovery's external fuel tank during the session and reviewed the repairs and modifications made. The processes of the repairs and testing involved people throughout the agency and its centers.
Shuttle crew change
The crew also underwent a change recently when astronaut Steve Bowen was assigned to take the place of Tim Kopra who was injured in a bicycle accident. "Overall the crew was in really good shape and felt really comfortable with this change," said Mike Moses, chairman of the Mission Management Team.
Discovery is poised for Launch
Discovery is poised on Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. The countdown is to begin Monday at 3 p.m.
Final voyage of Discovery
Discovery flew its maiden voyage on Aug. 30, 1984, on the STS-41D mission. Later missions included NASA’s return to flight after the loss of Challenger (September 1988) and Columbia (July 2005), launch of the Hubble Space Telescope in April 1990, the final Shuttle/Mir docking mission in June 1998 and Senator John Glenn’s shuttle flight in October 1998. When Discovery retires this year it will have flown in space 39 times, more than any other shuttle.
Thursday, 17 February 2011
Sunday, 13 February 2011
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has found a pair of colliding galaxies over 430 million light years from Earth in the shape of a giant pink heart.
Mysterious black holes
Mysterious black holes
The new discovery, code named Arp 147, is the result of two galaxies colliding in deep space. The result of this cataclysmic event is an expanding wave of new stars, exploding supernovas and mysterious black holes with mass that could be twenty times that of our Sun. Studies with NASA
's Spitzer Space Telescope and ultraviolet observations with NASA 's Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX) have enabled scientists to estimate that the most intense formation of new stars in these galaxies may have ended 15 million years ago.
Amazing pictures of colliding galaxies
A composite image of Arp 147 has been prepared by the Space Telescope Science Institute in
. Stunning images of colliding galaxies have been created by combining X-rays from the NASA Baltimore 's Chandra X-ray Observatory, which show as pink, with red, green and blue optical data from the Hubble Space Telescope.
|Giant ring of black holes in space|
Sources: NASA February 9, 2011 and October 1st, 2010 issue of The Astrophysical Journal, Authors Saul Rappaport and Alan Levine from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, David Pooley from Eureka Scientific and Benjamin Steinhorn, also from MIT.
Photo Credits: X-ray: NASA/CXC/MIT/S Rappaport et al