HOUSTON, Dec. 17 (UPI) — NASA says space shuttle Endeavour will begin the last year of shuttle flights by delivering the final U.S. module of the International Space Station.
That STS-130 mission is targeted for launch Feb. 7 from the Kennedy Space Center.
NASA officials said they will preview the mission during a series of briefings Friday, Jan. 15, at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. NASA Television and the agency’s Web site will broadcast the briefings live.
Five shuttle missions are planned during 2010, with the final flight currently targeted for launch in September.
“Endeavour’s 13-day flight will include three spacewalks and the delivery of the Tranquility node, a connecting module that will increase the International Space Station’s interior space,” NASA said in a statement. “Tranquility will provide additional room for crew members and many of the space station’s life support and environmental control systems.
“Attached to the node is a cupola, which is a robotic control station and has seven windows to provide a panoramic view of Earth, celestial objects and visiting spacecrafts,” the space agency said. “After the node and cupola are added, the space station will be about 90 percent complete.”
George Zamka will command the Endeavour mission, joined by Pilot Terry Virts and astronauts Kay Hire, Steve Robinson, Nicholas Patrick and Bob Behnken. Virts will be making his first trip to space.
Copyright 2009 by United Press International