After spending an extra day in orbit, Discovery's astronauts glided to a smooth landing at the Kennedy Space Center this morning to wrap up a 12-day, 4.7 million mile mission designed to study the Earth's atmosphere and test technology for the International Space Station.
Commander Curt Brown set Discovery down on runway 33 at KSC's Shuttle Landing Facility at 6:08 a.m. CDT to wrap up the sixth shuttle mission of the year and the 86th in shuttle program history. It was the 10th consecutive shuttle landing at the Florida spaceport.
Discovery's landing came one day after a threat of ground fog forced the astronauts to remain in orbit for an additional 24 hours, but this morning, skies were clear and winds were calm to greet Brown, Pilot Kent Rominger, Mission Specialists Jan Davis, Bob Curbeam and Steve Robinson and Payload Specialist Bjarni Tryggvason.
The astronauts plan to undergo brief medical exams at KSC and be reunited with their families before flying back to Ellington Field in Houston later this afternoon. Crew arrival is scheduled shortly after 4 p.m. Central time.
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