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Jessica Rye
Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
(321) 867-6185
Space Shuttle Processing Status Report
Due to the holidays, this will be the final Space Shuttle Processing Status Report for 2004.

Note: NASA's Kennedy Space Center issues Space Shuttle Processing Status Reports each week, and is the source for information regarding processing activities associated with the vehicles and payloads. This report does not necessarily reflect the chronological order of future Space Shuttle missions. If you are a member of the media and would like further information, visit

Discovery (OV-103)

Technicians continue to perform orbiter powered-system testing on Discovery for its Return to Flight mission, designated STS-114, to the International Space Station. Final closeouts and seal installations continue on the Rudder Speed Brake.

The new Orbiter Boom Sensor System (OBSS) is scheduled to arrive at Kennedy Space Center as early as next week. Once at KSC, it will be taken to the Remote Manipulator System lab in the Vehicle Assembly Building for final checkout and testing prior to moving over to the Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF) for installation into Discovery. The 50-foot long OBSS will attach to the Remote Manipulator System, or Shuttle arm, and is one of the new safety measures for Return to Flight, equipping the orbiter with cameras and laser systems to inspect the Shuttle's Thermal Protection System while in space.

Atlantis (OV-104)

In OPF Bay 1, processing is continuing to progress well for Atlantis' mission to the International Space Station. The orbiter continues to remain in a power-down period to complete the final wiring for the Return to Flight modifications, including the new OBSS, wing leading edge sensors and the External Tank separation camera. The vehicle is scheduled to be powered up next week.

The body flap is scheduled to be installed on Atlantis early January. The body flap actuators were removed and inspected prior to being reinstalled on the vehicle. The fuel cells and external airlock are scheduled to be installed following the holidays.

Endeavour (OV-105)

Space Shuttle Endeavour is in its Orbiter Major Modification period, which began in December 2003. Endeavour was rolled over to the Vehicle Assembly Building yesterday for a temporary stay, clearing OPF Bay 2 for a scheduled maintenance period. The orbiter is scheduled to be rolled back into the bay on Jan. 12.

Both the right- and left-hand wing leading edges were painted following the removal of miniscule corrosion on the wing. This prepares the surface of the wing for the reinstallation of the Reinforced Carbon-Carbon panels.

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