STS-130 Payload Ready
In the Space Station Processing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, operations are under way to place the International Space Station's Node 3, named Tranquility, into a payload transportation canister for its move to Launch Pad 39A. Here, Tranquility is lowered into the canister.
Attached to one end of Tranquility is a cupola, a unique work area with six windows on its sides and one on top. The cupola resembles a circular bay window and will provide a vastly improved view of the station's exterior. The multi-directional view will allow the crew to monitor spacewalks and docking operations, as well as provide a spectacular view of Earth and other celestial objects.
The module was built in Turin, Italy, by Thales Alenia Space for the European Space Agency.
Image credit: NASA/Amanda Diller
Jan. 12, 2010