Having settled into a comfortable pace in their on orbit home, Columbia’s astronauts are continuing their around-the-clock efforts with the experiments being flown as part of the Microgravity Science Laboratory payload. With no significant Shuttle system issues being worked, the crew has been able to devote all of its efforts toward the science objectives of the STS-94 flight.
Red team crew members, Commander Jim Halsell along with Pilot Susan Still, Mission Specialist Don Thomas and Payload Specialist Greg Linteris, have been busy with their fourth day of in-flight activities since being awakened just before midnight.
Halsell has been performing status checks and video documentation of some experiments. Still has been overseeing orbiter systems including the transfer of software files through the Orbiter Communication Adapter (OCA) system. Thomas’ attention today has been with the Glovebox facility and the Fiber Supported Droplet Combustion experiment while Linteris has been working with the Droplet Combustion Experiment.
Later this morning, as they are winding up their work day, Halsell, Still and Thomas will conduct an interview with the Cable News Network (CNN) at 11:32 a.m. CDT.
The Blue Team astronauts, Payload Commander Janice Voss, Mission Specialist Mike Gernhardt and Payload Specialist Roger Crouch are scheduled to be awakened just after 11 a.m. this morning. After a brief handover with their Red Team co-workers, Voss, Gernhardt and Crouch will assume responsibilities for the MSL science operations in the Spacelab.
While Columbia’s crew continue their science efforts aboard the Shuttle, the three person crew aboard the Russian space station Mir are busy preparing for the arrival of the next Progress resupply vehicle. The Progress launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazahkstan is targeted for late this evening at 11:11 p.m. CDT. An on-time launch of Progress would happen with Columbia located at 27 degrees South latitude and 69 degrees East longitude, flying above the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar.
The next STS-94 status report will be issued about 6 p.m. central time.
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