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Orbiter: Atlantis
Mission: STS-135
Payload: Raffaello
Launch: July 8, 2011
Time: 11:29 a.m. EDT
Site: Pad 39A, Kennedy Space Center
Landing: July 21 @ 5:57 a.m. EDT
Site: KSC's Shuttle Landing Facility

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Cdr Chris Ferguson

Pilot Doug Hurley

MS 1 Sandy Magnus

MS 2 Rex Walheim





Cargo module unberthed from shuttle Atlantis' bay
BY WILLIAM HARWOOD
STORY WRITTEN FOR CBS NEWS "SPACE PLACE" & USED WITH PERMISSION
Posted: July 11, 2011


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Using the International Space Station's robot arm, the Atlantis astronauts pulled a bus-size cargo module from the shuttle's payload bay early Monday, kicking off a slow-motion move to a port on the lab's forward Harmony module to clear the way for a busy week of logistics transfers. The Italian-built Raffaello module is loaded with 9,403 pounds of supplies and equipment, including 2,677 pounds of food, that will help keep the station crew supplied through 2012.


Raffaello is lifted from Atlantis' bay. Credit: NASA TV
 
Along with attaching Raffaello to the space station, the astronauts and flight controllers plan to restart one of the shuttle's four general purpose computers that was inadvertently shut down during rendezvous with the station Sunday. Engineers believe the computer is healthy and that the shutdown was triggered by a temperamental switch.

Station Flight Director Courtenay McMillan said flight controllers are no longer worried about a possible "conjunction," or close approach, with a piece of debris from an old Russian satellite. Initial tracking passes indicated the debris might pass close to the station Tuesday, but follow-on observations show no need for an avoidance maneuver.

"We got a couple of more opportunities to get some data on this shift and decided the probabilities are trending really low," McMillan said. "So we are not currently planning to do any debris avoidance maneuver. It looks pretty good, this is something we see a lot on the station side. We followed our normal process and we're going to continue to track it. But right now, it's looking really good."

Pilot Douglas Hurley and Sandra Magnus, operating the space station's robot arm, began Raffaello's unberthing from Atlantis' payload bay around 5:47 a.m. EDT (GMT-4). The multi-purpose logistics module, or MPLM, will be maneuvered to the Earth-facing port of the station's forward Harmony module and locked in place with 16 motor-driven bolts in the port's common berthing mechanism,

"They have to get all the vestibule connections hooked up so that we have ventilation and power and all that good stuff so we can do all the transfer operations later on," McMillan said. "So it'll be about one o'clock in the afternoon Houston time, maybe a little earlier if they get ahead."

Atlantis' mission was added to NASA's shuttle manifest to deliver enough supplies, spare parts and other gear, in concert with Russian, European and Japanese cargo ships, to support the station's six-person crew through 2012 even if new commercial cargo carriers designed to take over resupply duties from the shuttle run into problems.

Raffaello is packed with "one year's worth of food, we're taking about 2,000 pounds of science equipment, we're taking hygiene items, we're taking clothing, we're taking thousands of pounds of spare parts for the different systems, life support system, the electrical system, the computer system and so forth," Magnus said in a NASA interview. "We're trying to supply the station for a whole year, and that hedges our bets against when the commercial follow-on cargo contracts will be available up and running."

It will take the combined shuttle-station crew a full week to unload Raffaello and to reload it with 5,660 pounds of trash, packing material and other no-longer-needed equipment that will be returned to Earth aboard Atlantis.

Later today, the astronauts will review plans for a spacewalk Tuesday by station flight engineers Ronald Garan and Michael Fossum. The primary goals of the excursion, the only EVA planned during Atlantis' visit, are to move a failed ammonia coolant pump to the shuttle for return to Earth and to install an experimental robotic refueling experiment on the station. The six-and-a-half-hour spacewalk is scheduled to begin at 8:44 a.m. Tuesday.

Here is an updated timeline of the crew's planned activities for flight day four (in EDT and mission elapsed time; includes revision D of the NASA television schedule; best viewed with fixed-width font):


DATE/EDT...DD...HH...MM...SS...EVENT

07/11
02:56 AM...02...15...30...00...STS/ISS crew wakeup
04:36 AM...02...17...10...00...ISS daily planning conference
05:06 AM...02...17...40...00...Station arm (SSRMS) grapples MPLM cargo module
05:36 AM...02...18...10...00...SSRMS unberths MPLM
06:16 AM...02...18...50...00...Middeck transfers
06:56 AM...02...19...30...00...SSRMS installs MPLM on Harmony nadir port
07:26 AM...02...20...00...00...First stage bolts
07:41 AM...02...20...15...00...Second stage bolts
08:06 AM...02...20...40...00...EVA-1: Equipment lock preps
08:06 AM...02...20...40...00...SSRMS ungrapples MPLM
08:36 AM...02...21...10...00...MPLM vestibule pressurization
08:46 AM...02...21...20...00...Crew meals begin
09:30 AM...02...22...01...00...Mission status briefing on NASA TV
09:51 AM...02...22...25...00...MPLM vestibule configured for ingress
11:26 AM...03...00...00...00...MPLM activation (part 1)
01:16 PM...03...01...50...00...MPLM activation (part 2)
01:36 PM...03...02...10...00...MPLM ingress
02:56 PM...03...03...30...00...EVA-1: Procedures review
04:00 PM...03...04...31...00...MMT briefing on NASA TV
04:21 PM...03...04...55...00...ISS evening planning conference
06:26 PM...03...07...00...00...ISS crew sleep begins
06:56 PM...03...07...30...00...STS crew sleep begins
09:00 PM...03...09...31...00...Flight day 4 video highlights

Spaceflight Now Plus
Additional coverage for subscribers:
VIDEO: FLIGHT DAY 3 HIGHLIGHTS REEL PLAY
VIDEO: SUNDAY'S MISSION MANAGEMENT TEAM UPDATE PLAY
VIDEO: SUNDAY'S MISSION STATUS BRIEFING PLAY
VIDEO: ATLANTIS CREW WELCOMED ABOARD STATION PLAY
VIDEO: DOCKING OF SHUTTLE TO STATION AS SEEN LIVE PLAY
VIDEO: SHUTTLE ARCS OUT IN FRONT OF SPACE STATION PLAY
VIDEO: ATLANTIS PERFORMS THE 360-DEGREE BACKFLIP PLAY

VIDEO: FLIGHT DAY 2 HIGHLIGHTS REEL PLAY
VIDEO: SATURDAY'S MISSION MANAGEMENT TEAM UPDATE PLAY
VIDEO: SATURDAY'S MISSION STATUS BRIEFING PLAY

VIDEO: FLIGHT DAY 1 HIGHLIGHTS REEL PLAY

VIDEO: COUNTDOWN PREVIEW AND WEATHER FORECAST BRIEFING PLAY
VIDEO: ASTRONAUTS ARRIVE AT LAUNCH SITE PLAY
VIDEO: PRE-FLIGHT INTERVIEW WITH CHRIS FERGUSON PLAY
VIDEO: PRE-FLIGHT INTERVIEW WITH DOUG HURLEY PLAY
VIDEO: PRE-FLIGHT INTERVIEW WITH SANDY MAGNUS PLAY
VIDEO: PRE-FLIGHT INTERVIEW WITH REX WALHEIM PLAY

VIDEO: SHUTTLE AND STATION PROGRAM BRIEFING PLAY
VIDEO: THE STS-135 MISSION OVERVIEW PRESENTATIONS PLAY
VIDEO: PREVIEW BRIEFING ON MISSION'S SPACEWALK PLAY
VIDEO: THE ASTRONAUTS' PRE-FLIGHT NEWS BRIEFING PLAY

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