Spaceflight Now: STS-101 Mission Report

Ascent events summary
Posted: April 22, 2000

T+0:00 Liftoff
The twin solid rocket boosters are ignited and space shuttle Atlantis launches from pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center, Florida.
T+0:10 Start roll maneuver
Atlantis beings a roll program to achieve a northeasterly track from KSC, heading toward a 51.6 degree inclination to the equator.
T+0:18 End roll
The shuttle completes the programmed roll maneuver and is now positioned heads down, wings level.
T+0:36 Start throttle down
The three liquid-fueled main engines are throttled down to 72 percent rated thrust to ease the vehicle's flight through the dense lower atmosphere.
T+0:51 Throttle up
Atlantis' main engines begin throttling back up. The engines's thrust level will be taken to 104.5 percent.
T+2:03 SRB staging
Having consumed all their propellant, the solid rocket boosters are jettisoned from the attachment points on the external fuel tank. The boosters parachute into the Atlantic Ocean for recovery and reuse.
T+2:13 Start OMS assist
The twin Orbital Maneuvering System engines on the tail of Atlantis are ignited to begin a 59-second firing to assist the shuttle into space.
T+3:52 Negative return
Atlantis can no longer make an emergency Return-to-Launch-Site abort landing at Kennedy Space Center. A problem after this point in flight requiring an abort would lead to a Trans-Atlantic Abort Landing, an Abort-Once-Around or Abort-to-Orbit.
T+5:49 Rolls to heads up
A programmed maneuver rolls Atlantis to a heads up position, placing the shuttle atop the external tank. This is done to improve communications between the shuttle and orbiting NASA satellites.
T+8:24 MECO command
Atlantis' three main engines are shut down. The external fuel tank is jettisoned moments later. An upcoming firing of the OMS engines will circularize the orbit.

Data source: NASA.

Pre-launch briefing
STS-101 index - See a listing of all our STS-101 stories and coverage.

Launch windows - The predicted windows in which Atlantis could launch over the the next week.

Mission timeline - Look ahead with a brief summary of events planned each day during the shuttle flight.