Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Discovery 10 Miles from the Station

Discovery is on track for this afternoon's approach and docking to the international space station, and the beginning of eight days of docked work to attach and deploy a huge set of solar arrays.

At 2:44 pm ET, the two spacecraft were 10 miles apart and over South America.

The TI Burn was completed at 2:34 pm ET, to increase the orbiter's speed by 6 mph. Now Discovery will fly up to the space station, perform a 360 degree fly around, and later perform an eight minute pitch maneuver.

The pitch maneuver will allow the crew aboard the station to photograph the shuttle's belly so that engineers can inspect for any tile damage which may have occurred from launch.

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