Camera views of STS-109 Columbia
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STS-109 Liftoff Status Page

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Shuttle Columbia Launch Status

March 1, 2002 6:22:02 a.m. EST Launch Window was 64 minutes.
On Friday, March 1, 2002, the 3 hour tanking operation was completed at 12:13 a.m. The crew departed the Operations and Checkout (O&C) Building and arrived at the launch pad shortly after 3a.m. EST. The hatch was closed slightly later than planned due to one of the hatch closeout microswitch indicators. The Orbiter Access Arm (OAA) retracted at 6:15 a.m EST. Launch occured at the opening of the launch window.

On Wednesday, February 27, 2002, the Columbia's launch was postponed until Friday, March 1st due to concerns about cold weather. Mission managers were also meeting to discuss conerns about ball bearings inside Columbia's main landing gear. On Thursday, the temperature at the planned shuttle launch time was 38 degrees Fahrenheit (just inside an acceptable range for launch). Temperature forcasts call for 55 degrees Fahrenheit at launch time on Friday. A Shuttle engineering team completed an extensive evaluation of the landing gear bearing issue and has determined there are no technical constraints that will impact the STS-109 landing. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/28/2002)

On Monday, February 25, 2002, the launch countdown clock picked up on schedule at the T-43 hour mark at 10 a.m. The STS-109 crewmembers arrived at KSC at 1:00 a.m. this morning and spent about two hours at Pad A performing a final inspection of the HST payload. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/25/2002)

On Friday, February 22, 2002, final pre-launch processing for Shuttle Columbia continues on schedule at Complex 39 Pad A . The Hubble payload Interface Verification Test is complete and the End-To-End Test is in progress. Work over the weekend includes completing aft closeouts prior to picking up the final countdown at the T-43 hour mark at 10 a.m. Monday, Feb. 25. The seven STS-109 crewmembers are scheduled to land at KSC at 1 a.m. Monday, and shortly after their arrival they will spend about two hours at the launch pad participating in final Hubble payload configuration familiarization operations in preparation for the five spacewalks that will be conducted during the STS-109 servicing mission. The payload doors will be closed later in the day. The status of the Auxiliary Power Unit hydraulic pump bolts is still under evaluation. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/22/2002)

On 1/28/02, Shuttle Columbia rolled out to Launch Complex 39A and is undergoing final preparations. The main engine Flight Readiness Test is complete and the two-day Countdown Demonstration Test (CDT) is underway, with a T-0 at 11 a.m. on Friday. The seven STS-109 crewmembers will be at the launch pad for familiarization and emergency egress operations today and will be onboard Columbia tomorrow to participate in the final hours of the simulated countdown. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 1/31/2002)

The rollout of Shuttle Columbia from the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) to Pad 39A was rescheduled for no earlier than Saturday morning due to requirements to continue trouble-shooting and verifying a faulty bearing in the steering linkage on one of the crawler-transporter's (CT) four "trucks." In addition, NASA management mandated that all of the trucks on the CT be inspected and verified prior to commencing rollout activities. The rollout had been scheduled for Wednesday, Jan. 23, but was delayed due to th crawler problem. No impact to the prelaunch milestones or launch date is expected. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 1/24/2002)

On January 17, 2002, Columbia rolled over from the OPF into the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB). (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 1/17/2002)

The launch date for STS-109 was earlier pushed back to give engineers time to evaluate a reaction wheel problem on the Hubble Space Telescope. Previous launch dates were February 14, 2002, January 17, 2002, January 11, 2001 and before that November 19, 2001.

STS-109 Movies and Images

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STS-109 Countdown Last Mission STS-108 Next Mission STS-110


Developed under the direction of the NASA KSC Public Affairs Office
Author: Jim Dumoulin (dumoulin@titan.ksc.nasa.gov) / NASA - Payload Operations
Last Updated: Monday April 1 17:51:34 EDT 2002(J.Dumoulin)

A service of NASA/Kennedy Space Center Public Affairs Office, Joe Gordon Jr.,Director (Joseph.Gordon-1@ksc.nasa.gov)