Headlines > News > Raffaello Packed, Crews Will Close Hatches and Say Farewell

Raffaello Packed, Crews Will Close Hatches and Say Farewell

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Mon Jul 18, 2011 9:31 am via: NASA
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The crew finished packing Raffaello on flight day 10, and now it’s just a matter of getting it – with its 5,666 pounds of returning cargo – back in place for the trip home. When it’s unpacked back on Earth, multipurpose logistic modules will have returned 20 tons of supplies and equipment to Earth, and carried another 50 tons into space since their first mission, STS-102 in 2002.

The hatches between Atlantis and the station are scheduled to be closed at 9:19 a.m. EDT Monday. Atlantis is scheduled to undock from the station at 2:28 a.m. Tuesday, and land at Kennedy Space Center at 5:57 a.m. on Thursday.

After returning to the space shuttle for the remainder of the mission, the crew will prepare for Tuesday’s undocking from the space station, checking out the tools they’ll use for that activity and setting up a camera inside the shuttle hatch.

The STS-135 crew provided a recorded message Saturday as a tribute to Atlantis, the entire Space Shuttle Program and team. In the message, Commander Chris Ferguson spoke about the U.S. flag displayed behind them that was flown on the first space shuttle mission, STS-1. It was flown on this mission to be presented to the space station crew and it will remain displayed aboard the station until the next crew launched from the U.S. retrieves it for return to Earth. It will fly from Earth again, with the next crew that launches from the U.S. on a journey of exploration beyond Earth orbit.

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