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May 1, 2007 Vol. 12, No.


Endeavour's external tank Williams helps orient new

moves to VAB checkout cell station crew members
Shuttle Update: Spray foam re- ISS Update: Commander Fyodor as an Expedition 15 flight engineer. The
pairs on Atlantis' external tank were Yurchikhin and flight engineers Oleg Ko- exchange of Anderson and Williams was
scheduled to begin Monday. Workers tov and Suni Williams began last week originally planned for the STS-118 mis-
have begun disassembling the special with light duty days after the busy hand- sion, now targeted for launch in August.
scaffolding built for the foam repair over operations with the former crew. NASA News: On Wednesday and
work, to allow for the removal this week The station crew participated in several Thursday, teams from around the nation
of Atlantis' three main engines to inspect drills to maintain medical and emergency will compete for a total of $250,000 from
for flow liner contamination. proficiency skills. Yurchikhin and Kotov NASA for an improved astronaut glove
Endeavour's three main engines began sessions throughout the first two design. The Astronaut Glove Challenge,
have been reinstalled after an inspection weeks of their residence to orient them- one of NASA's seven Centennial Chal-
of the engine flow liners showed no con- selves with the station’s operating sys- lenges, will take place at the New Eng-
taminant. Engine leak checks are com- tems. Williams is aiding Expedition 15 land Air Museum at Bradley International
plete. Technicians are now in the process with station orientation. Airport in Windsor Locks, Conn. The
of completing the engine interface con- Williams spent some of her off-duty competition is free and open to the pub-
nections and installing the engine heat time completing additional test runs for lic. It begins May 2 from 3 to 6 p.m. and
shields. Nose landing gear door rigging the capillary flow experiment. Capillary continues May 3 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
began this week, and preparations are un- flow is the key process used to move flu- NASA is offering a total of $200,000
der way for installation of the tunnel ids in a microgravity environment. The for the team that can design and manufac-
adapter, which is located in the midbody experiment uses the low-gravity envi- ture the best astronaut glove that exceeds
between the external airlock and a con- ronment provided by the station to under- minimum requirements. An additional
tainer used to transport experiments and stand the special dynamics of capillary $50,000 goes to the team that best dem-
cargo. flow and will aid in the design of fluid onstrates mechanical counter pressure
ET-117, the external fuel tank to be transport systems on future spacecraft. gloves.
used for STS-118,was transported from In addition to general station orienta- Centennial Challenges, an element of
the barge in the turn basin to the Vehicle tion, Yurchikhin and Kotov also per- NASA's Innovative Partnerships Pro-
Assembly Building on Monday. Today, formed maintenance work on life-support gram, promotes technical innovation
the tank will be lifted into a checkout cell hardware in the Russian segment. The through prize competitions to make revo-
in high bay No. 2 for processing. water separator in the air conditioning lutionary advances to support the Vision
Technicians have installed Discov- system was replaced. The separator dis- for Space Exploration and NASA goals.
ery's remote manipulator system, known positions condensate water and air col- For more information about the Innova-
as the shuttle arm or RMS. Checkout and lected from the station’s atmosphere that tive Partnerships Program and Centennial
servicing of water spray boiler No. 1 is forms through the air conditioner, main- Challenges, visit:
complete. The forward reaction control taining optimum humidity levels on-
system was installed. board. Countdown is published every Tuesday & Thurs-
After several months working aboard day for NASA KSC employees. Deadlines are
Reminder — KSC will mark this the International Space Station, Williams 10 a.m. Mondays & Wednesdays. E-mail news to
year’s National Day of Prayer with an will come back to Earth aboard the Space For questions or
hour-long observance beginning 11 Shuttle Atlantis, targeted for launch June information, e-mail or call 321-867-2815. You can
a.m. on May 3 in the KSC Training 8. That shuttle mission, STS-117, will also find Countdown on the Web at
Auditorium. Astronauts Joe Tanner carry her successor, astronaut Clay
and Jeff Williams will be appearing. Anderson, to the station to begin his duty