Shuttle Atlantis Docks with ISS

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla., May 16 (UPI) — The crew of the space shuttle Atlantis hugged and joined hands with astronauts aboard the International Space Station Sunday 220 miles above the Earth.

Atlantis docked with the orbiting space station at 10:28 a.m. EDT as the spacecraft passed over the South Pacific Ocean, NASA said. Astronauts opened the hatches over the equator about two hours later and the handshakes and smiles began as the six Atlantis crewmembers were greeted by the six astronauts on the space station.

The two crews then went their separate ways as Atlantis commander Ken Ham and mission specialists Mike Good, Garrett Reisman, Stephen Bowen, Piers Sellers and pilot Tony Antonelli began preparations for the first of three spacewalks to install a fourth Russian-made docking port.

Astronauts also will swap out six space station batteries and deliver a spare U.S. space-to-ground communications antenna, a robotic arm and an airlock during the 34th station assembly mission, Florida Today reported.

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