Nearing the end of its 4.2-mile trek from the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB), Space Shuttle Discovery clears the gate to begin the climb to Launch Pad 39B aboard the mobile launcher platform and crawler transporter. Earlier in the week, the Shuttle was rolled back to the VAB from the pad to repair hail damage on the external tank's foam insulation. Mission STS-96, the 94th launch in the Space Shuttle Program, is scheduled for liftoff May 27 at 6:48 a.m. EDT. STS-96 is a logistics and resupply mission for the International Space Station, carrying such payloads as a Russian crane, the Strela; a U.S.-built crane; the Spacehab Oceaneering Space System Box (SHOSS), a logistics items carrier; and STARSHINE, a student-shared experiment. (Photo Release Date: 05/20/1999 )

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