Features

Katherine Trinidad
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-3749
katherine.trinidad@nasa.gov
 
Candrea Thomas
Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
321-867-2468
candrea.k.thomas@nasa.gov
 
March 11, 2009
 
RELEASE : 09-058
 
 
NASA Holds Briefing on Status of Space Shuttle Discovery
 
 

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- NASA managers will hold a news conference no earlier than 6:30 p.m. EDT to discuss the status of space shuttle Discovery's launch to the International Space Station. The launch was postponed Wednesday due to a leak associated with the gaseous hydrogen venting system outside the external fuel tank. The system is used to carry excess hydrogen safely away from the launch pad. At 2:37 p.m., managers officially scrubbed the launch for at least 24 hours.

Mission managers are holding a meeting that started at 5 p.m. to discuss potential repair options and Discovery's launch attempt opportunities. The news conference will follow the meeting's conclusion and will air live on NASA Television and the agency Web site.

Discovery's STS-119 flight is delivering the space station's fourth and final set of solar array wings, completing the station's truss, or backbone. The arrays will provide the electricity to fully power science experiments and support the station's expanded crew of six in May. The 14-day mission will feature four spacewalks to help install the S6 truss segment to the starboard, or right, side of the station and the deployment of its solar arrays. The flight also will replace a failed unit for a system that converts urine to potable water.

Commander Lee Archambault is joined on STS-119 by Pilot Tony Antonelli and Mission Specialists Joseph Acaba, Steve Swanson, Richard Arnold, John Phillips and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Koichi Wakata. Wakata will replace space station crew member Sandra Magnus, who has been aboard the station for more than four months. He will return to Earth during the next station shuttle mission, STS-127, targeted to launch in June 2009.

For information about NASA TV streaming video, downlink and schedule information, visit:

 

http://www.nasa.gov/ntv


For the latest information about the STS-119 mission and its crew, visit:

 

http://www.nasa.gov/shuttle


For information about the International Space Station, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/station


 

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