NASA Podcasts

STS-131: Discovery Launch Lights Morning Sky
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Mike Curie/STS-131 Launch Commentator: T minus 15 seconds, and the sound suppression water system has been activated. We have a "go" for main engine start. Three engines up and ready. Three... two... one... zero... booster ignition.... and liftoff of Discovery, blazing a trail to scientific discoveries aboard space station.

Alan Poindexter/STS-131 Commander: Houston, Discovery, roll program.

Rick Sturckow/CAPCOM: Roger roll, Discovery.

Kylie Clem/Ascent Commentator: This is mission control Houston, space shuttle Discovery is rolling into a heads-down position, putting it on course at 51.6 degrees, 136, and 136 statute mile orbit and eventually the International Space Station. Discovery's three liquid-fueled main engines are now throttling down to reduce stress on the shuttle as it travels through the area of maximum dynamic pressure. Discovery is already at an altitude of 4.7 miles, or 26,500 feet, traveling...

Rick Sturckow/CAPCOM: Discovery, go at throttle up.

Alan Poindexter/STS-131 Commander: Roger, go at throttle up.

Kylie Clem/Ascent Commentator: Traveling 1,000 mph, Discovery's engines are now throttled back up and performing at full capability. At liftoff, the shuttle weighed more than four-and-a-half million pounds, and now at one minute and 27 seconds into the flight, the main engines and solid rocket boosters have reduced that weight by about half.

The solid rocket boosters alone are burning 11,000 pounds of propellant per second. And the external tank is now 3,000 pounds lighter than when it began. Discovery is now 21 miles away from its launch pad and 22 miles in altitude, traveling 2,700 mph.

All three main engines are working just as expected. The three fuel cells are generating power and the three auxiliary power units are all producing pressure. In short, everything is performing well.

Two minutes and seven seconds into the STS-131 mission. Booster officer in the Mission Control Center has confirmed the solid rocket rooster separation. All systems continuing to function well.

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