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Fw: STS-108 Mission Status Report #05


STS-108   Report # 05 
 Friday, Dec. 7, 2001 - 6 p.m. CST 
 A new trio of residents arrived at the International Space Station this
afternoon as the shuttle Endeavour docked to the orbital outpost.

With the new Expedition Four station crew of Commander Yury Onufrienko
and Flight Engineers Carl Walz and Dan Bursch looking on from Endeavour’s
flight deck, shuttle Commander Dom Gorie brought Endeavour to a gentle
linkup with the ISS at 2:03 p.m. CST as the two craft sailed over
England. Within minutes, Pilot Mark Kelly and Mission Specialists Linda
Godwin and  Dan Tani began to conduct post-docking checks of the
mechanical interface between Endeavour and the station’s Destiny
Laboratory prior to the opening of the hatches on the two vehicles. At
first, the shuttle’s docking ring and the docking mechanism on the ISS
did not align properly, but after allowing the two craft to dampen their
relative motion against one another, the vehicles were hard mated for a
week of joint operations by the ten crewmembers.

On board the ISS in their 119th day in space and their 116th day aboard
the station, Expedition Three Commander Frank Culbertson, Pilot Vladimir
Dezhurov and Flight Engineer Mikhail Tyurin watched as their replacements
arrived for the start of more than five months of orbital duty. The only
other visitors for the Expedition Three crew during its increment arrived
on the ISS in October to deliver a new Soyuz return vehicle.

The hatches were opened between Endeavour and the ISS’ Destiny Laboratory
at 4:42 p.m. CST, enabling the ten crewmembers to greet one another.
Onufrienko, Walz and Bursch will officially take over command of the ISS
Saturday afternoon from Culbertson, Dezhurov and Tyurin after
transferring custom made Soyuz seatliners and conducting leak checks to
their spacesuits.

The crews now begin a busy week of handing over station responsibilities
and unloading tons of supplies brought to the complex by Endeavour.
Saturday's activities will be highlighted by Kelly's use of the shuttle's
robotic arm to hoist the Italian-built Raffaello logistics module from
Endeavour's payload bay and attach it to a station berthing port.
Raffaello will stay attached to the station for most of the week while it
is unloaded. The crews will begin a sleep period at 10:19 p.m. CST today
and awaken at 6:19 a.m. CST on Saturday. The next STS-108 mission status
report will be issued at about 7 a.m. CST Saturday or as events warrant.

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