National Aeronautics and Space Administration
John F. Kennedy Space Center
Kennedy Space Center, Florida 32899
FOR RELEASE: 01/27/2006
VIDEO NO: KSC-06-S-00039
CAPTIONED IN: ENGLISH
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Next on the Space Shuttle Status Report. Things are moving into place inside the Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center in
Florida for orbiter Discovery's second return-to-flight test mission, STS-121.
The NASA Space Shuttle Status Report starts right now.
I'm Michael Ciannilli, NASA test director, and this is NASA's Space Shuttle Status Report.
This week in shuttle news:
Inside the Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center in Florida,
things are coming together for Discovery's second space shuttle return-to-flight test mission, STS-121.
Stacking of the twin white solid rocket boosters that will help Discovery soar into space is now under way.
The right solid rocket booster segment, called the aft booster, was the first portion to move to the Vehicle Assembly Building on January 23.
The aft booster is made up of an aft skirt and aft motor segment.
Once inside, the segment was carefully lifted from the transport carrier, then lowered onto the Mobile Launch Platform in bay 3.
After all four propellant-filled segments are stacked, they're topped with a cone-shaped fairing that houses a parachute.
The parachute will soften the SRBs' trip back to Earth so they can be used again on another NASA mission.
The SRBs are vitally important, as they provide the main thrust to lift the space shuttle off the launch pad.
Another big development this week: All three of orbiter Discovery's main engines are now installed.
Together, the space shuttle main engines and the solid rocket boosters provide the ride for Discovery's trip to the International Space Station.
Mission STS-121, scheduled for no earlier than May of this year, is NASA's second return-to-flight test mission.
Discovery's crew, led by veteran astronaut Steve Lindsey,
will continue to test new equipment and procedures that increase space shuttle safety.
Discovery and its crew will also deliver supplies and cargo for the space station.
Thatï¿½s all the time we have for this weekï¿½s Space Shuttle Status Report.
Our next report will feature updates on orbiters Atlantis and Endeavour, plus the latest on Discovery
Until then, stay with NASA TV and nasa.gov for the latest in mission news.
For the NASA Space Shuttle Status Report, I'm Michael Ciannilli.|
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