NASA Dryden News Releases

SPACE SHUTTLE RETURNS FIRST INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION CREW TO FLORIDA

March 21, 2001

Release: 01-16

The Space Shuttle Discovery landed at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida 11:31 p.m. (Pacific time) Tuesday (March 20) when weather improved to permit a Florida landing.

NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center on Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., had been alerted to prepare for Discovery's mission STS-102 to arrive at Dryden 1 a.m. Wednesday because of the potential for a weather problem in Florida. The decision to land at Florida was made by NASA mission control at about 9:50 p.m. Tuesday (Pacific time), with the shuttle's de-orbit engine burn started at 10:26 p.m.

Mission STS-102 carried the second crew to inhabit the International Space Station, and brought home the first crew after more than four months in orbit.

Landing in Florida saves about $1 million in cross-country transportation costs, and can also shorten the turnaround time needed to prepare the shuttle for its next space flight.

--nasa--

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