Atlantis Space Station Bound!

Post-Launch Press Conference – 9:30 p.m. EDT
NASA senior managers expressed their pride in Space Shuttle Atlantis’ successful liftoff. The launch was flawless and Atlantis is safely in orbit.

“The team really performed well,” said Rex Geveden, NASA associate administrator. “And it’s a really good day for NASA and for this nation’s Space Program.”

Bill Gerstenmaier, associate administrator for Space Operations stated that the launch of STS-117 is the first step of a challenging mission and although there are many challenges ahead, this was a great start to the launch year.

After the culmination of many months of hard work from the damaging hail storm that struck Kennedy Space Center late in February, “The external tank has performed in a magnificent manner,” said Shuttle Program Manager Wayne Hale.

The preliminary reports from the cameras that took images of the external tank during liftoff showed no foam loss prior to solid rocket booster separation.

“This bodes well for the future as we look forward to the completion of the space station,” Hale said.

Mission Management Team chairman Leroy Cain and NASA launch director Mike Leinbach expressed their gratitude to the entire NASA and contractor team that prepared the space shuttle for launch.

“It was a beautiful night for a launch,” said Leinbach. “I’m just very proud to be part of this team.”

Mission and Crew
Mission STS-117 is the Space Shuttle Program’s 21st mission to the International Space Station. Rick Sturckow will command the mission and Lee Archambault will serve as Atlantis’ pilot. Mission Specialists Patrick Forrester, James Reilly, Steven Swanson, John Olivas and Flight Engineer Clayton Anderson round out the crew to deliver the S3/S4 starboard truss segments, batteries and another pair of solar arrays to the space station. Anderson will replace Expedition 15 Flight Engineer Sunita Williams on station and Williams will return to Earth aboard Atlantis.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: