8 p.m. CDT Thursday, Sept. 11, 2009
Mission Control Center, Houston, Texas
STS-128 MCC Status Report #29
Space shuttle Discovery and its seven-member crew landed at 7:53 p.m. CDT Friday at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., capping off a 14-day mission to deliver supplies and research facilities to the International Space Station and its six-person crew.

Discovery’s main landing gear touched down at 7:53:25 p.m., followed by the nose gear at 7:53:34. The shuttle’s wheels stopped at 7:54:35, bringing the mission’s elapsed time to 13 days, 20 hours, 54 minutes, 55 seconds. Discovery traveled 5,755,275 statute miles over 219 orbits.

Mission managers called off this afternoon’s landing opportunities at Kennedy Space Center in Florida because of thunderstorms and otherwise unstable weather conditions.

Commander Rick Sturckow, Pilot Kevin Ford and Mission Specialists Pat Forrester, Jose Hernandez, Danny Olivas, Tim Kopra and Christer Fuglesang, representing the European Space Agency, will rejoin their families after they fly home to Houston.

Kopra is returning after serving aboard the International Space Station as a flight engineer since July. Kopra spent 58 days in space, including 53 days aboard the space station. Astronaut Nicole Stott launched aboard Discovery and remains on the station as a member of the Expedition 20 crew.

Discovery’s crew delivered more than 7 tons of laboratory facilities, exercise equipment, food, water and other supplies to the station, and over the course of three spacewalks, replaced an ammonia tank critical to station cooling and retrieved materials samples that will help with new spacecraft development.

The astronauts are scheduled to return home to their Houston base on Saturday, arriving at Ellington Field’s Hangar 990 about 4 p.m. The public is invited to the ceremony.

Crews at NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center will prepare Discovery for a ferry flight back to its Florida launch site, where it will be refurbished for the STS-131 station resupply mission in February 2010.

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