STS-91 Day 9 Highlights
Back to STS-91 Flight Day 08 Highlights:
- On Wednesday, June 10, 1998, 6:00 a.m. CDT, STS-91 MCC Status Report # 16
- Discovery's crew was awakened this morning to the theme from the
television show "Superman," played in honor of astronaut Franklin
Chang-Diaz's record-breaking time in orbit aboard a Space Shuttle, a
total of more than 51 days spent in orbit during six shuttle flights
as of today. The previous record for individual time spent aboard a
shuttle was 1,211 hours, held by astronaut Jeff Hoffman.
- At 12:26 p.m. Central time today, Chang-Diaz will be interviewed in
Spanish by CBS' Telenoticias and CNN's En Espanol. Now in the home
stretch of the mission, other crew activities today will include using
the shuttle's robotic arm to record video of water leaking from a
relief valve associated with one of the electricity-generating fuel
cells and continued work with onboard experiments.
- Mission Specialists Wendy Lawrence and Janet Kavandi will unberth
the robotic arm at 7:52 a.m. Central and use it to view the area from
which water has been leaking overboard since launch. Although the leak
is small and has had no impact on the mission, flight controllers want
to document the condition of the valve to help understand the
malfunction. The crew will move the arm into a position where the
camera can see the relief valve, located in the fuselage just above
the starboard wing's leading edge. Lawrence and Kavandi will keep the
arm in position for 30 minutes while the pressure in one of
Discovery's water tanks is decreased and then increased to observe the
effect on the leak. While the arm is in use, the crew also will record
scenes of the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer instrument located in the
aft cargo bay.
- Also today, Chang-Diaz will continue work with the SPACEHAB
Universal Communications System, or SHUCS, a system hoped to allow
telephone, voice, fax and some video communications between scientists
on the ground and an orbiting crew. No such communications have been
possible with the system thus far during the flight, although
engineers have seen indications that it has been able to aquire the
INMARSAT communications satellites. Pilot Dom Gorie will continue
studies of how fire burns in weightlessness today with sessions using
the Solid Surface Combustion Experiment, or SSCE, aboard the
shuttle. This is the tenth and final shuttle flight for the SSCE, an
experiment that has gathered a vast amount of information about the
nature of flames and combustion in space.
- Mission Control is continuing to investigate a problem that was seen
Tuesday with one of Discovery's flight control computers that was
receiving data from Global Positioning System equipment on the
Shuttle. The problem poses no issues for Discovery's continuing
operations or planned landing on Friday. The computer, one of five
such computers onboard the shuttle which all serve as a backup to one
another, was taken out of service on Tuesday. Another flight control
computer was assigned to take over the errant computer's functions and
that computer has been functioning normally, as have all of the other
flight control computers. Flight controllers are continuing to examine
data transmitted from the problem computer before it was taken off
line. Mission Control may request that Discovery Commander Charlie
Precourt reboot the computer today in an effort to clear the error and
regain its use.
- Discovery's crew will begin an eight-hour sleep period at 7:06 p.m.
Discovery is currently in a 238 by 223 statute mile orbit, 233 statute
miles ahead of the Mir and continuing to separate from the
station. The next STS-91 status report will be issued at about 6
p.m. Central time Wednesday.
- On Wednesday, June 10, 1998, 6:00 p.m. CDT, STS-91 MCC Status Report # 17
- With a history-making day behind them, Discovery's astronauts will
turn their attention to Friday's planned return trip to Earth .
- Today, Mission Specialist Franklin Chang-Diaz broke the previous
record for time spent on board the space shuttle, as he passed the
mark of 1,211 hours set by astronaut Jeff Hoffman over the course of
five missions. STS-91 is Chang-Diaz's sixth space flight. In another
first today, navigational data on board Discovery was updated using
data from the Global Positioning Satellite system, marking the
inaugural use of this satellite constellation to provide navigational
information to a manned spacecraft on orbit.
- The updating of Discovery's navigational data from the GPS system
followed a successful test to verify equipment and operational
capability of that system, which is ultimately intended to replace the
Shuttle's tactical navigation aids used during landing. The test was
conducted to provide additional data on a discrepancy in information
between the GPS system and one of Discovery's on-board computers that
was noted by flight controllers early Tuesday morning.
- This morning, Mission Specialists Wendy Lawrence and Janet Kavandi
maneuvered the Shuttle's robot arm into position to look for any
possible ice build-up near a valve where water from one of Discovery's
fuel cells is being vented overboard. Precourt informed flight
controllers that the view from cameras mounted on the arm did not
indicate any build-up of ice.
- Precourt, Pilot Dom Gorie, and Lawrence will check out Discovery's
flight control surfaces and systems tomorrow morning to ensure the
vehicle is ready for its high-speed reentry through the Earth's
atmosphere on Friday. All seven crew members will continue the
process of stowing the equipment and other hardware they have used
during the course of the mission, to ready Discovery for Friday's
- The astronauts will take a break from their landing preparations
tomorrow to talk with the Associated Press and ABC Radio in an
interview slated for 11:54 a.m. Central time.
Go to STS-91 Flight Day 10 Highlights: