KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla. -- At Launch Pad 39B the payload canister, with the Multi-Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo inside, nears the payload changeout room on the Rotating Service Structure. Umbilical hoses, maintaining a controlled environment for the cargo, are still attached to the lower end of the canister. At the PCR, the payload ground-handling mechanism (PGHM) will be used to transfer Leonardo out of the canister and then into Space Shuttle Discovery’s payload bay. One of Italy’s major contributions to the International Space Station program, Leonardo is a reusable logistics carrier. It is the primary delivery system used to resupply and return Station cargo requiring a pressurized environment. Leonardo is the primary payload on mission STS-102 and will deliver up to 10 tons of laboratory racks filled with equipment, experiments and supplies for outfitting the newly installed U.S. Laboratory Destiny. STS-102 is scheduled to launch March 8 at 6:45 a.m. EST. (Photo Release Date: 02/23/2001 )
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