Endeavour Set for Ferry Flight to Florida

Space shuttle Endeavour and its seven astronauts followed up recent missions that added to the International Space Station’s exterior by beefing up the interior of the orbital complex. During about 16 days in space, the crew added new living, cooking and exercise facilities to the space station. They also performed four spacewalks to service the joints in the station’s truss that turn the power-producing solar arrays.

By the time Endeavour left the space station on Nov. 28, 2008, it had spent almost 12 days at the complex. The seven astronauts, joined by the three crew members living on the space station, had transferred more than seven tons of equipment and supplies to the space station, and moved more than 3,400 pounds from the station for return to Earth.

After launching from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center well after sunset on Nov. 14 Endeavour glided back to Earth awash in sunlight over California. Commander Chris Ferguson guided Endeavour to an afternoon landing at Edwards Air Force Base on Nov. 30 to end the flight.

Meanwhile, workers at Kennedy have moved the newest external tank into the Vehicle Assembly Building for processing. It will be used by Atlantis for the STS-125 mission targeted to launch May 12, 2009, on a servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope. The tank was built at Lockheed Martin's factory in New Orleans, La., and brought by barge to Kennedy.

The next shuttle mission is STS-119, targeted for launch on Feb. 12, 2009, on a flight to install the fourth set of solar arrays on the International Space Station.

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