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Crew Attaches P5 to Station, Makes Connections


*Crew Attaches P5 to Station, Makes Connections*

Image above: Mission Specialist Bob Curbeam participates in the first 
spacewalk of the STS-116 mission. Image Credit: NASA TV (GO TO: 
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle/main/index.html-FOR PICTURE

With the attachment of the P5 integrated truss structure on to the 
International Space Station, STS-116 spacewalkers Robert Curbeam and 
Christer Fuglesang are finalizing the installation with power, data and 
heater cable connections.

The spacewalk began at 3:31 p.m. EST and the P5 was attached to the P4 
segment at 5:45 p.m. Mission Specialist Joan Higginbotham used the 
station's robotic arm to move the new segment with only inches of 
clearance into its installation position. Then, the spacewalkers guided 
Higginbotham with visual cues as the exacting operation was carried out.

The component, also called the P5 spacer, is a two-ton piece that is the 
fifth truss segment added to the port side of the station. The addition 
of the P5 sets the stage for the relocation of the P6 truss and its set 
of solar arrays. The P6 will be moved from its current location on the 
top of the Destiny Laboratory to the P5 during a future mission.

Pilot Bill Oefelein is coordinating the spacewalk. The excursion will 
conclude about 9:41 p.m.

Two more spacewalks are on tap for STS-116. All three will be based out 
of the stationís Quest Airlock.

Also, the STS-116 and Expedition 14 crews continue joint operations, 
which began Monday evening.

*No Focused Heat Shield Inspection Required Wednesday*

The Mission Control Center in Houston informed STS-116 Commander Mark 
Polansky that the crew will not need to perform a focused inspection of 
Space Shuttle Discoveryís heat shield on Wednesday.

The STS-116 crew will press ahead with their activities on Wednesday, 
which includes the retraction of the port solar array on the P6 truss 

For the latest news and information on the International Space Station 
and the Expedition 14 crew, please visit the main station page. + Read 
more <http://www.nasa.gov/station>
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