5 a.m. CDT Thursday, June 21, 2007
Mission Control Center, Houston, Texas
STS-117 MCC Status Report #26
The astronauts on space shuttle Atlantis are just hours away from an anticipated landing in Florida to conclude a nearly 13-day mission to deliver new electrical generation capacity for expansion of the International Space Station.
This morning’s wakeup song, “Makin’ Good Time Coming Home” by john Arthur martinez, was played for Commander Rick Sturckow and Mission Specialist Jim Reilly.
Deorbit preparations get started at 7:50 a.m., and the crew should get the OK to close the payload bay doors at 9:05 a.m. If systems are good and the weather cooperates, Sturckow will conduct the deorbit burn at 11:50 a.m. to slow Atlantis enough to fall out of orbit and begin its descent toward a landing at the Kennedy Space Center’s Shuttle Landing Facility at 12:55 p.m.
A landing on that opportunity would conclude Mission Specialist Suni Williams’ record-setting flight at 193 days, 16 hours and 8 minutes, the longest single spaceflight ever by a female astronaut or cosmonaut.
There is another landing opportunity on the following orbit, which would put Atlantis on the ground at 2:30 p.m. There are two opportunities at both KSC and Edwards Air Force Base in California tomorrow in case weather prevents a landing today.
Aboard the International Space Station Expedition 15 Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin plans to carry out a troubleshooting procedure on the Russian segment’s central computer and terminal computer today. This procedure will not impact operation of the two channels of each computer that have been in control of Russian system operation since the restart on Friday.
At 8:05 a.m. Yurchikhin will activate the backup channels of both computers; on the next Russian ground site pass he’ll shut them down and remove the jumpers that bypassed a secondary power switch. On the ground site pass at 11:25 a.m. he’ll restart those channels to see if they run properly without the jumpers in place. In addition, Mission Control Moscow plans to restart the Elektron oxygen generation system at 11:40 a.m., putting it into operation for the first time since the computer failures last week.
Today’s troubleshooting procedure is designed to help Russian mission managers further assess their plans for repair of the computer systems, including possible replacement of components with new hardware to be flown on the next Progress supply ship due to arrive at ISS July 24.
The next STS-117 status report will be issued Thursday afternoon, or earlier if events warrant.