Analysis Continues on Discovery

STS133 Stringers Refoam425x

Technicians spray foam insulation on a section of repaired stringers on space shuttle Discovery’s external fuel tank. Photo credit: NASA

Mon, 29 Nov 2010 02:59:22 PM GMT

At NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, space shuttle Discovery was powered down for the weekend while analysis continued. Today, technicians will install reference dots on the ground umbilical carrier plate, or GUCP, to monitor for movement during tanking.

Discovery’s launch is currently targeted for no earlier than Dec. 17 after shuttle managers determined more tests and analysis are needed.

The Program Requirements Control Board, or PRCB, reviewed on Nov. 23 repairs and engineering evaluations associated with cracks on two 21-foot-long, U-shaped aluminum brackets, called stringers, on the shuttle’s external tank. Managers decided the analysis and tests required to launch Discovery safely are not complete. The work will continue through this week.

The next status review by the PRCB will be Thursday, Dec. 2. If managers clear Discovery for launch on Dec. 17, the preferred time is about 8:51 p.m. EST.

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