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Allard Beutel
Headquarters, Washington
(Phone: 202/358-4769)

Jessica Rye
Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
(Phone: 321/867-2468)

July 2, 2004
RELEASE : S04-18
Space Shuttle Processing Status Report: S04-18
The Space Shuttle fleet is housed and processed at NASA's Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Fla. The order the Space Shuttles are listed in this report does not necessarily reflect the chronological order of future missions.

Discovery (OV-103)

Orbiter Discovery's scheduled power-down period for its Return to Flight mission, STS-114, to the International Space Station is progressing well. The Return to Flight modifications, including the orbiter boom sensor-system wiring and preparations for installation of the wing leading-edge sensors are almost complete. The External Tank camera wiring harness is installed.

Reinforced Carbon-Carbon (RCC) panel installation is almost complete on both of the wing leading edges, with two panels remaining to be hung on the left-hand side and three panels remaining to be hung on the right-hand side.

Atlantis (OV-104)

Processing continues on Atlantis in the Orbiter Processing Facility in support of its future mission to the International Space Station. The majority of the external flex hose inspections are complete, and the internal flex hose inspections have begun. Each vehicle has about 300 flex hoses, which are flexible tubing between two fixed ends.

Four left-hand carrier panels have been installed. They are Thermal Protection System panels that attach the RCC panels to the wing leading edge. On the right-hand side, work has begun to install the spar fittings. The RCC panels are mechanically attached to the wing with spar fittings, which are a series of floating joints to reduce stress on the panels when the Shuttles are in flight.

Endeavour (OV-105)

Space Shuttle Endeavour is in its Orbiter Major Modification period, which began last December. Electrical modifications continue in the crew module. Wire inspections are ongoing in the Environmental Control and Life Support System bay. Both right-hand and left-hand radiators have been installed for flight. Bead blasting of Endeavour's body flap area is complete. Bead blasting is a process using a pressurized pneumatic gun containing silica carbide, plastic pellets or glass beads to remove primer, paint and corrosion from orbiter vehicle surfaces.

Previous Space Shuttle processing status reports are available on the Internet at:

For information about NASA's Return to Flight efforts on the Internet, visit:

For information about NASA and agency programs on the Internet, visit:


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