STS-103 Mission Specialist C. Michael Foale (Ph.D.) holds one of his children on the runway at Patrick Air Force Base in Cocoa Beach, Fla., as his wife, Rhonda, looks on. The STS-103 crew and their families are preparing to board an airplane that will return them to their home base at the Johnson Space Center in Houston following the successful completion of their mission. Discovery landed in darkness the previous evening, Dec. 27, on runway 33 at KSC's Shuttle Landing Facility at 7:00:47 p.m. EST. This was the first time that a Shuttle crew spent the Christmas holiday in space. The other STS-103 crew members are Commander Curtis L. Brown Jr.; Pilot Scott J. Kelly; and Mission Specialists Steven L. Smith, John M. Grunsfeld (Ph.D.), Claude Nicollier of Switzerland and Jean-Frangois Clervoy of France. The STS-103 mission accomplished outfitting the Hubble Space Telescope with six new gyroscopes, six new voltage/temperature improvement kits, a new onboard computer, a new solid state recorder and new data transmitter, a new fine guidance sensor along with new insulation on parts of the orbiting telescope. This was the 96th flight in the Space Shuttle program and the 27th for the orbiter Discovery. (Photo Release Date: 12/28/1999 )
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