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Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF)

Shuttle Landing Facility

Orbiter landings at the Kennedy Space Center are made on one of the largest runways in the world, the Kennedy Space Center Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF). The runway is located 3.2 km (2 miles) northwest of the Vehicle Assembly Building and is 4,572 meters (15,000ft) long and 91.4 meters (300ft) wide - about as wide as the length of a football field. It has 305 meters (1000ft) of paved overruns at each end and the paving thickness is 40.6cm (15 inches) at the center.

Payload activities which take place at the SLF include removal of middeck experiments from the orbiter post-landing (apprx 1 hour after landing) and destowage of time critical experiment items from Spacelab and Spacehab modules in the paylaod bay (apprx 4-6 hours after landing). These activities take place on the runway before the orbiter is towed to the Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF).

At times the Shuttle Landing Facility is used to deliver and pick up payload items via aircraft.

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