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Saturday, June 7, 2008 - 5:30 a.m. CDT
Mission Control Center, Houston, Texas
STS-124 MCC Status Report #14
The crew of Discovery began its eighth flight day this morning to the song “Taking Off.” It was performed by Godaigo and played for Mission Specialist Aki Hoshide.

The first task on hand for the crew is a series of tests on Kibo’s robotic arm. These tests will include the robot arm’s hold and release mechanism.

The crew also will perform an initial deploy of the 33-foot arm, which will involve a slight movement of the joints. This will be done in order to allow the arm to relax its position slightly and to ensure that mission specialists Mike Fossum and Ron Garan have adequate room for some of their tasks during their spacewalk on Sunday.

The crew also will continue the outfitting of the vestibule between the new Kibo laboratory module, the Japanese Pressurized Module, and its logistics module, which was relocated yesterday. The hatch between the two modules is scheduled to be opened on Monday.

Discovery’s crew also will talk with news media representatives beginning at 1:02 p.m. CDT. The interviews, which will be carried live on NASA TV, will be with CNN, WCBS-TV and WDAY-TV.

Later, at 6:02 p.m., Discovery Commander Mark Kelly and Hoshide will speak with dignitaries and students in Japan. That event also will be carried live on NASA TV, and will be replayed with English interpretation at 7:30 p.m.

Garan and Fossum will review the procedures for their Sunday spacewalk, which will be the third and final of the mission. The two astronauts will spend the night camped out in the Quest airlock in preparation for that activity.

The next status report will be issued at the end of the crew day, or earlier if events warrant.

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