The Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test (TCDT) nears its culmination as the STS-79 astronauts exit the Operations and Checkout Building and head for the launch pad. From left are Mission Specialists Tom Akers, John E. Blaha, Jay Apt, and Carl E. Walz (waving); Pilot Terrence W. Wilcutt and Commander William F. Readdy. Once at the pad, the astronauts will climb into the Space Shuttle Atlantis and participate in a simulated countdown. Emergency egress training exercises at the pad also are conducted as part of the TCDT, a dress rehearsal for launch. Atlantis is undergoing preparations for liftoff on the fourth Shuttle-Mir docking flight no earlier than Sept. 12. (Photo Release Date: 08/28/96 )

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