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STS-108 Mission Status Report #15

STS-108    Report # 15 
 Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2001 - 7 p.m. CST 
 Having almost completed unpacking three tons of supplies brought from
Earth aboard Endeavour and the Raffaello cargo module, the station and
shuttle crews today turned their focus to packing up the cargo carrier
and shuttle for the trip home.

When the day began, the crews had already completed unloading more than
4,600 pounds of food, clothes, supplies and equipment from Raffaello,
about 95 percent of the module's total cargo. They also had completed
moving the 1,000 pounds of station gear and experiments that were
launched in Endeavour's cabin to the orbiting complex.

In repacking the cargo module and Endeavour with unneeded equipment bound
for Earth, the crews have loaded more than 1,800 pounds of material into
Raffaello, almost half the amount expected by the time the packing is
completed. Packing of Raffaello and Endeavour will continue on Thursday.
On Friday, Raffaello will be detached from the station and moved back
into Endeavour's payload bay for the trip home.

In addition, Endeavour’s crew – Commander Dom Gorie, Pilot Mark Kelly,
Mission Specialists Linda Godwin and Dan Tani, and offgoing station crew
members Commander Frank Culbertson, Pilot Vladimir Dezhurov and Flight
Engineer Mikhail Tyurin – assisted the new station Expedition Four crew
in replacing most components of a station treadmil today. Expedition Four
– Commander Yury Onufrienko and Flight Engineers Dan Bursch and Carl Walz
– will use the new treadmill almost daily during their five and a half
months aboard the station. The job went smoothly and the crews finished
several hours ahead of schedule, loading the old treadmill parts into
Raffaello to be refurbished on Earth and, eventually, reused.
A third and final scheduled reboost of the station by Endeavour also was
completed today. The three boosts performed during the mission, each
accomplished by a gradual, hour-long periodic firing of the shuttle
steering jets, have raised the station's altitude by a total of almost 9
statute miles. The station's average altitude is now about 241 statute

On Thursday, the crews will continue maintenance work as well as packing,
replacing a faulty compressor in a Russian air conditioner on the
station. Although the new crew officially took over aboard the station on
Saturday, a formal handover ceremony also is planned for the two station
crews at 2:04 p.m. CST Thursday. The crews begin a sleep period at 10:19
p.m. CST today and awaken at 6:19 a.m. CST Thursday. The next STS-108
mission status report will be issued about 7 a.m. CST Thursday or as
events warrant.

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