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Fw: LAUNCH OF SPACE SHUTTLE ENDEAVOUR RESET FOR TUESDAY, DEC. 4






Dwayne Brown
Headquarters, Washington               Nov. 30, 2001
(Phone: 202/358-1726)

James Hartsfield
Johnson Space Center, Houston
(Phone: 281/483-5111)

RELEASE: 01-237

LAUNCH OF SPACE SHUTTLE ENDEAVOUR RESET FOR TUESDAY, DEC. 4

     International Space Station and Space Shuttle managers 
have rescheduled the launch of Space Shuttle Endeavour to 
Tuesday at 5:45 p.m. EST from NASA's Kennedy Space Center, 
Fla. The long-range weather forecast indicates favorable 
conditions for launch.

The new date will allow sufficient time for a spacewalk to 
clear an apparent obstruction in a docking mechanism on the 
International Space Station's Zvezda module. This apparent 
obstruction is believed to be preventing hooks and latches 
from fully engaging to secure a Russian Progress supply 
vehicle to its docking port. 

The decision to reschedule was jointly made after Russian and 
American flight controllers conducted an extensive review of 
the amount of work required to complete the mating of the 
Progress to the station.

In order to prepare for an expected four-hour spacewalk by 
Expedition Three crewmembers Vladimir Dezhurov and Mikhail 
Tyurin, beginning Monday morning about 8:30 EST, the crew, 
including Commander Frank Culbertson, will adjust its sleep 
schedule to match times during which the complex flies over 
Russian ground communication sites -- a safety requirement. 
The spacewalk will be carried on NASA TV beginning at 8 a.m. 
EST Monday. A countdown-status press briefing will be carried 
on NASA TV as soon as practical following the spacewalk.

This sleep-shifting currently does not match the schedule of 
the arriving shuttle and Expedition Four crews, which is 
required for the weeklong joint operations to transfer some 
6,000 pounds (2,700 kilograms) of supplies to the station and 
to the shuttle, in addition to swapping command from 
Expedition Three to Expedition Four.

The decision to launch Endeavour Tuesday will allow both the 
shuttle- and station-crew sleep schedules to properly align. 
The decision also allows station managers to assess the 
results of the spacewalk and allow launch controllers at 
Kennedy to replenish power reactants aboard Endeavour that 
would provide the flexibility for an additional day of joint 
operations at the station, if necessary.

The shuttle crew of Commander Dom Gorie (Capt., USN), Pilot 
Scott Kelly (Lt. Cdr, USN) and Mission Specialists Linda 
Godwin (Ph.D.) and Dan Tani will deliver the Expedition Four 
crew of Commander Yury Onufrienko and Flight Engineers Dan 
Bursch (Capt., USN) and Carl Walz (Col., USAF) to the station 
for a five-month stay aboard the complex, orbiting 240 miles 
(386 kilometers) above the Earth.

The seven crewmembers will remain at Kennedy reviewing 
mission-training plans and timelines, and spending time with 
their families prior to Tuesday's launch. Gorie and Kelly will 
conduct Shuttle Training Aircraft flights tonight and Sunday 
to maintain proficiency for landing.

The countdown clock for Endeavour's launch will remain in the 
T minus 11 hour hold until 2:47 a.m. EST Tuesday. Fueling of 
the shuttle's external fuel tank will start at approximately 
7:45 a.m. EST Tuesday and NASA TV coverage of the launch will 
begin at 12:30 p.m. EST. A December 4 launch will provide for 
a landing of Endeavour on December 15 at approximately 1:30 
p.m. EST.

The Kennedy Space Center press site will be closed Saturday 
and Sunday. Hours of operation Monday are from 8 a.m. to 7:00 
p.m. and Tuesday from 7 a.m. to midnight.

                          -end-

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