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STS-131

STS-131

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STS-131 was a NASA
NASA
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is the agency of the United States government that is responsible for the nation's civilian space program and for aeronautics and aerospace research...

 Space Shuttle
Space Shuttle
The Space Shuttle was a manned orbital rocket and spacecraft system operated by NASA on 135 missions from 1981 to 2011. The system combined rocket launch, orbital spacecraft, and re-entry spaceplane with modular add-ons...

 mission to the International Space Station
International Space Station
The International Space Station is a habitable, artificial satellite in low Earth orbit. The ISS follows the Salyut, Almaz, Cosmos, Skylab, and Mir space stations, as the 11th space station launched, not including the Genesis I and II prototypes...

 (ISS). launched on 5 April 2010 at 6:22 am from Kennedy Space Center
Kennedy Space Center
The John F. Kennedy Space Center is the NASA installation that has been the launch site for every United States human space flight since 1968. Although such flights are currently on hiatus, KSC continues to manage and operate unmanned rocket launch facilities for America's civilian space program...

's launch pad 39A, and landed at 9:08 am on 20 April 2010 on runway 33 at the Kennedy Space Center's Shuttle Landing Facility. The mission marked the longest flight for space shuttle Discovery.

The primary payload was a Multi-Purpose Logistics Module
Multi-Purpose Logistics Module
A Multi-Purpose Logistics Module is a large pressurized container used on Space Shuttle missions to transfer cargo to and from the International Space Station . An MPLM was carried in the cargo bay of a Shuttle and berthed to the Unity or Harmony modules on the ISS. From there, supplies were...

 loaded with supplies and equipment for the International Space Station. The mission also removed and replaced an ammonia tank assembly outside the station on the S1 truss
Integrated Truss Structure
the Integrated Truss Structure forms the backbone of the International Space Station, with mountings for unpressurized logistics carriers, radiators, solar arrays, and other equipment.-History:...

. STS-131 furthermore carried several on-board payloads; this mission had the most payloads since STS-107
STS-107
-Mission parameters:*Mass:**Orbiter Liftoff: **Orbiter Landing: **Payload: *Perigee: *Apogee: *Inclination: 39.0°*Period: 90.1 min- Insignia :...

.

Crew



Mission parameters

  • Mass
    Mass
    Mass can be defined as a quantitive measure of the resistance an object has to change in its velocity.In physics, mass commonly refers to any of the following three properties of matter, which have been shown experimentally to be equivalent:...

    :
  • Shuttle liftoff weight: 4521749 lbs
  • Orbiter liftoff: 266864 lbs
  • Orbiter landing: 224957 lbs
  • Perigee
    Perigee
    Perigee is the point at which an object makes its closest approach to the Earth.. Often the term is used in a broader sense to define the point in an orbit where the orbiting body is closest to the body it orbits. The opposite is the apogee, the farthest or highest point.The Greek prefix "peri"...

    : 200 miles (321.9 km)
  • Apogee: 215 miles (346 km)
  • Inclination
    Inclination
    Inclination in general is the angle between a reference plane and another plane or axis of direction.-Orbits:The inclination is one of the six orbital parameters describing the shape and orientation of a celestial orbit...

    : 51.6
  • Period
    Orbital period
    The orbital period is the time taken for a given object to make one complete orbit about another object.When mentioned without further qualification in astronomy this refers to the sidereal period of an astronomical object, which is calculated with respect to the stars.There are several kinds of...

    : 90 min

Multi-Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo


The primary payload of STS-131 was the Multi-Purpose Logistics Module
Multi-Purpose Logistics Module
A Multi-Purpose Logistics Module is a large pressurized container used on Space Shuttle missions to transfer cargo to and from the International Space Station . An MPLM was carried in the cargo bay of a Shuttle and berthed to the Unity or Harmony modules on the ISS. From there, supplies were...

 (MPLM) Leonardo. The MPLM was filled with food and science supplies for the International Space Station
International Space Station
The International Space Station is a habitable, artificial satellite in low Earth orbit. The ISS follows the Salyut, Almaz, Cosmos, Skylab, and Mir space stations, as the 11th space station launched, not including the Genesis I and II prototypes...

 (ISS). The MPLM also carried the third and final Minus Eighty Degree Laboratory Freezer for ISS
Minus Eighty Degree Laboratory Freezer for ISS
The Minus Eighty-Degree Laboratory Freezer for ISS is a European-built experiment storage freezer for the International Space Station. It comprises four independent dewars which can be set to operate at different temperatures. Currently temperatures of −80°C, −26°C, and +4°C are used during...

 (MELFI), Window Orbital Research Facility (WORF), one Crew Quarters Rack, the Muscle Atrophy Resistive Exercise (MARES) rack, Resupply Stowage Racks (RSRs), as well as Resupply Stowage Platforms (RSPs).

Lightweight Multi-Purpose Equipment Support Structure Carrier


The Lightweight Multi-Purpose Equipment Support Structure Carrier (LMC) carried a refurbished Ammonia Tank Assembly (ATA) to the ISS. The refurbished ATA was removed from the Space Station and returned for use on this mission during STS-128
STS-128
-Crew notes:Nicole Stott was originally scheduled to return aboard Soyuz TMA-15, but a change in the flight plan was made due to the possible flight delays in future shuttle missions, which may extend Canadian astronaut Robert Thirsk's mission beyond the six-month duration preferred for station...

. It was swapped with an empty tank which will ride home on the LMC.
Location Cargo Mass
Bays 1–2 Orbiter Docking System
EMU
Extravehicular Mobility Unit
The Space Shuttle/International Space Station Extravehicular Mobility Unit is an independent anthropomorphic system that provides environmental protection, mobility, life support, and communications for a Space Shuttle or International Space Station crew member to perform extra-vehicular activity...

 3008 / EMU 3017
1800 kilograms (3,968.3 lb)
~260 kilograms (573.2 lb)
Bay 4P Shuttle Power
Distribution Unit (SPDU)
~18 kilograms (39.7 lb)
Bay 7S ROEU 751A umbilical 127 kilograms (280 lb)
Bays 7–12 Leonardo (MPLM FM-1) 12371 kilograms (27,273.4 lb)
Bay 13 Lightweight MPESS Carrier (LMC) 1764 kilograms (3,889 lb)
Starboard Sill Orbiter Boom Sensor System
Orbiter Boom Sensor System
The Orbiter Boom Sensor System is a 50-foot boom carried on board NASA's Space Shuttles. The boom can be grappled by the Canadarm and serves as an extension of the arm, doubling its length to a combined total of 100 feet...

382 kilograms (842.2 lb)
Port Sill Canadarm 410 kilograms (903.9 lb)
Total: 15332 kilograms (33,801.3 lb)

TriDAR


This mission was the second flight of the TriDAR
TriDAR
TriDAR, or Triangulation and LIDAR Automated Rendezvous and Docking, is a relative navigation vision system developed by Neptec Design Group and funded by the Canadian Space Agency and NASA. It provides guidance information that can be used to guide an unmanned vehicle during rendezvous and...

, a 3D dual-sensing laser camera, intended for potential use as an autonomous rendezvous and docking sensor. TriDAR provides guidance information that can be used to guide a vehicle during rendezvous and docking operations in space. TriDAR does not rely on any reference markers, such as reflectors, positioned on the target spacecraft. To achieve this, it relies on a laser based 3D sensor and a thermal imager. Geometric information contained in successive 3D images is matched against the known shape of the target object to calculate its position and orientation in real-time. The TriDAR tracked the ISS position and orientation from the shuttle during docking, undocking, and flyaround operations.

Mission milestones


The mission marked:
  • 162nd NASA manned space flight
  • 131st shuttle mission since STS-1
    STS-1
    STS-1 was the first orbital flight of NASA's Space Shuttle program. Space Shuttle Columbia launched on 12 April 1981, and returned to Earth on 14 April, having orbited the Earth 37 times during the 54.5-hour mission. It was the first American manned space flight since the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project...

  • 38th flight of Discovery
  • 33rd shuttle mission to the ISS
  • 106th post-Challenger
    Space Shuttle Challenger
    Space Shuttle Challenger was NASA's second Space Shuttle orbiter to be put into service, Columbia having been the first. The shuttle was built by Rockwell International's Space Transportation Systems Division in Downey, California...

     mission
  • 18th post-Columbia
    Space Shuttle Columbia
    Space Shuttle Columbia was the first spaceworthy Space Shuttle in NASA's orbital fleet. First launched on the STS-1 mission, the first of the Space Shuttle program, it completed 27 missions before being destroyed during re-entry on February 1, 2003 near the end of its 28th, STS-107. All seven crew...

     mission
  • 35th and last night launch of a shuttle, 22nd night launch from launch pad 39A
  • 2nd "descending node" entry since 2003

Shuttle processing


Space Shuttle Discovery was moved from its hangar in the Orbiter Processing Facility (OPF) 3 to the nearby Vehicle Assembly Building
Vehicle Assembly Building
The Vehicle Assembly Building, or VAB, at NASA's Kennedy Space Center was used to assemble and house American manned launch vehicles from 1968-2011. It is the fourth largest building in the world by volume...

 on 22 February 2010. The rollover was completed around 10:30 EST. According to NASA, the rollover occurred a day earlier than announced to take advantage of favorable weather in advance of poor conditions forecasted on the next day.

An earlier plan to move Discovery into the VAB on 12 February 2010 was delayed because of cold weather at the Kennedy Space Center. For the rollover, temperatures in the Vehicle Assembly Building
Vehicle Assembly Building
The Vehicle Assembly Building, or VAB, at NASA's Kennedy Space Center was used to assemble and house American manned launch vehicles from 1968-2011. It is the fourth largest building in the world by volume...

 (VAB) had to be above 45 °F (7.2 °C) for more than twelve hours because Discovery was not attached to any heating purges to protect its systems from potential damage from the cold.

Space shuttle Discovery began its trip, known as the rollout, to launch pad 39A
Kennedy Space Center Launch Complex 39
Launch Complex 39 is a rocket launch site at the John F. Kennedy Space Center on Merritt Island in Florida, USA. The site and its collection of facilities were originally built for the Apollo program, and later modified to support Space Shuttle operations. NASA began modifying LC-39 in 2007 to...

 at 23:58 EST on 2 March 2010. The complete shuttle stack and mobile launch platform were secured to the launch pad 39A structure at 6:49 EST on 3 March 2010. The 3.4 mi (5.5 km) trek took 6 hours 51 minutes to complete. The rollout was delayed 24 hours by the threat of lightning from a passing cold front. That weather moved away, and the stiff wind gusts blowing on Florida's Space Coast on the next day were not a factor for the rollout. Ahead of the rollout, engineers noticed some damage caused by birds to the External Tank (ET-135), which was repaired inside the VAB. Birds had managed to reach the tank, and pecked away at the Thermal Protection System (TPS) foam.

5 April (Flight Day 1 – Launch)


lifted off successfully at 06:21 EDT. After the eight and a half minute ride to space, Discoverys seven person crew began configuring the orbiter from a launch vehicle to an orbital vehicle. Commander Alan Poindexter and pilot Jim Dutton, with help from mission specialist 2 Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger
Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger
Dorothy Marie "Dottie" Metcalf-Lindenburger was born on May 2, 1975 in Colorado Springs, Colorado and married Jason Metcalf-Lindenburger, a seventh grade teacher at the time, in 2000. She was a science teacher at Hudson's Bay High School in Vancouver, Washington when she was selected in 2004 as an...

, also performed a series of engine firings or burns to adjust their speed and refine their path to the International Space Station
International Space Station
The International Space Station is a habitable, artificial satellite in low Earth orbit. The ISS follows the Salyut, Almaz, Cosmos, Skylab, and Mir space stations, as the 11th space station launched, not including the Genesis I and II prototypes...

. While the engine burns were going on, the rest of the crew opened the payload bay doors, set up the computers and Ku band
Ku band
The Kμ band is a portion of the electromagnetic spectrum in the microwave range of frequencies. This symbol refers to —in other words, the band directly below the K-band...

 antenna. The antenna suffered a failure during normal checkout and setup on orbit. Due to the failure, the normal downlink of imagery of the external tank was not completed. The crew on board will monitor the inspections of the thermal protection system (TPS) in real time and will note any spots of interest and let the ground know while downlinking the imagery after docking. The dish antenna also serves as a radar antenna, measuring the distance to the space station.

6 April (Flight Day 2 – Inspections)


The seven person crew of STS-131 was awakened to begin their first full day in space on Flight Day 2. Due to the lack of Ku-band communication, changes to the crews daily plan were read up for them to write out. After their post sleep activities, commander Alan Poindexter and pilot Jim Dutton fired Discoverys Orbital Maneuvering System (OMS) engines to correct and further refine the shuttle's path to the ISS. Astronauts Naoko Yamazaki
Naoko Yamazaki
is a former Japanese female astronaut at JAXA, the second Japanese woman to qualified. The first was Chiaki Mukai.-Early life:Yamazaki was born Naoko Sumino in Matsudo City. She spent two years of her childhood in Sapporo...

 and Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger began activating and checking out the Shuttle Remote Manipulator System (SRMS) also known as the Canadarm. While Metcalf-Lindenburger and Yamazaki were working with Canadarm, Stephanie Wilson
Stephanie Wilson
Stephanie Diana Wilson is an American engineer and a NASA astronaut. She flew on her first mission in space on board the Space Shuttle mission STS-121, and is the second African American woman to go into space, after Mae Jemison.-Education:In middle school, Wilson interviewed an Astronomy professor...

 was getting equipment together and set up to record the inspections of the shuttle's heat shield. The inspections were recorded so they could be downlinked to the ground once docked to the ISS. Once all that work was done, commander Poindexter and pilot Dutton joined Metcalf-Lindenburger, Yamazaki, and Wilson to conduct the inspection of the shuttle's heat shield. While the inspection was going on, Rick Mastracchio and Clayton Anderson were on the mid-deck of Discovery checking out the Extravehicular Mobility Unit
Extravehicular Mobility Unit
The Space Shuttle/International Space Station Extravehicular Mobility Unit is an independent anthropomorphic system that provides environmental protection, mobility, life support, and communications for a Space Shuttle or International Space Station crew member to perform extra-vehicular activity...

s (EMU) and getting them ready for their three spacewalks. The last portion of the crew day was spent preparing and checking out all of the tools used during rendezvous.

7 April (Flight Day 3 – Docking)


Space shuttle Discovery successfully docked with the space station at 07:44 UTC (03:44 EDT) on 7 April 2010 as the two spacecraft sailed 220 miles above the Caribbean. The crew performed six successful engine firings to set up the on-time docking. Prior to docking commander Poindexter guided Discovery through the standard Rendezvous Pitch Maneuver (RPM). Station commander Oleg Kotov
Oleg Kotov
Oleg Valeriyevich Kotov was born October 27, 1965, in Simferopol, Crimean oblast in Ukrainian SSR. After a career as a military pilot, he joined the Russian cosmonaut corps. He has flown two long duration spaceflight on the International Space Station logging just short of a year in space...

 and flight engineer T.J. Creamer took more than 350 photos of Discoverys heat shield. Once Discovery docked to the International Space Station (ISS), a series of leak checks were done on both sides of the hatch by the shuttle and station crews. The hatches between the two vehicles were opened at 09:11 UTC (05:11 EDT), which was 30 minutes earlier than planned. Once the hatches were opened the STS-131 crew got a safety briefing from the station crew, then began to transfer items that would be needed for later in the day and early on flight day 4. Two items that were transferred were the two EMUs that will be used for the three spacewalks. The crew also completed a grapple of the Orbiter Boom Sensor System
Orbiter Boom Sensor System
The Orbiter Boom Sensor System is a 50-foot boom carried on board NASA's Space Shuttles. The boom can be grappled by the Canadarm and serves as an extension of the arm, doubling its length to a combined total of 100 feet...

 (OBSS) with the Space Station Remote Manipulator System (SSRMS) also known as Canadarm2. Once the OBSS was grappled it was unberthed from the starboard sill of the space shuttle payload bay, and handed off to the SRMS. Throughout the day, after docking to the station, the shuttle crew began downlinking all of the inspection video from flight day 2, and launch imagery and video.


8 April (Flight Day 4 – MPLM ingress)


On flight day 4 Stephanie Wilson and Naoko Yamazaki grappled and berthed the Multi-purpose Logistics Module (MPLM) Leonardo. The MPLM was berthed to the station at 04:24 UTC (00:24 EDT). The hatches were opened by station flight engineer Soichi Noguchi
Soichi Noguchi
is a Japanese aeronautical engineer and a JAXA astronaut. His first spaceflight was as a Mission Specialist aboard STS-114 on 26 July 2005 for NASA's first "return to flight" Space Shuttle mission after the Columbia disaster. He was most recently in space as part of the Soyuz TMA-17 crew and...

 and shuttle mission specialist Clayton Anderson
Clayton Anderson
Clayton Conrad Anderson is an American engineer and a NASA astronaut. Launched on STS-117, he replaced Sunita Williams on June 10, 2007 as a member of the ISS Expedition 15 crew.-Education:...

 at 11:58 UTC (07:58 EDT). The joint STS-131/Expedition 23
Expedition 23
Expedition 23 was the twenty-third long-duration mission to the International Space Station . Expedition 23 began with the Soyuz TMA-16 undocking on 18 March 2010. Shortly thereafter cosmonauts Aleksandr Skvortsov and Mikhail Korniyenko and astronaut Tracy Caldwell Dyson arrived at the Space...

 crews began transferring cargo from the MPLM, with the first item being a Rate Gyro Assembly (RGA) which will be replaced on the first spacewalk of the mission. During flight day 4 commander Alan Poindexter did several in-flight interviews. Commander Poindexter was joined by mission specialists Rick Mastracchio and Stephanie Wilson. The interviews were with the Tom Joyner Radio Show, WVIT-TV and Fox News Radio
Fox News Radio
Fox News Radio is an American radio network programmed by Fox News Channel.- History :In 2003, Fox News began syndicating one minute radio updates to radio stations via syndication service Westwood One. On June 1, 2005, Fox News Radio employed 60 people and provided five minute newscasts at the top...

. At the end of the day Mastracchio and Anderson entered the Quest airlock and begin breathing pure oxygen for an hour, while the atmospheric pressure inside the airlock was lowered to 10.2 psi. This procedure is known as the pre-breathe protocol and is done before every spacewalk, to purge nitrogen from the blood stream and prevent the decompression sickness
Decompression sickness
Decompression sickness describes a condition arising from dissolved gases coming out of solution into bubbles inside the body on depressurization...

.

9 April (Flight Day 5 – EVA 1)


Flight day 5 saw the completion of the first spacewalk by Rick Mastracchio and Clayton Anderson. The pair released the new ammonia tank assembly for transfer to station for installation on a later spacewalk. They also removed an experiment from outside on the Kibo Exposed Facility, replaced a Rate Gyro Assembly (RGA) and performed several get-ahead tasks. The spacewalking pair was assisted by the SSRMS which was operated by pilot Jim Dutton and mission specialist Stephanie Wilson. While the spacewalk was going on, Naoko Yamazaki was assisted by commander Alan Poindexter, and the Expedition 23
Expedition 23
Expedition 23 was the twenty-third long-duration mission to the International Space Station . Expedition 23 began with the Soyuz TMA-16 undocking on 18 March 2010. Shortly thereafter cosmonauts Aleksandr Skvortsov and Mikhail Korniyenko and astronaut Tracy Caldwell Dyson arrived at the Space...

 crew to move several of the large science racks from the MPLM Leonardo to their new location on the ISS.

10 April (Flight Day 6 – Transfers)


Flight day 6 was dedicated to transferring supplies from the MPLM Leonardo and the space shuttle mid-deck. The crews transferred the Windows Observational Research Facility (WORF) to the Destiny lab. Mission specialist Naoko Yamazaki, along with flight engineer Soichi Noguchi also transferred the Express Rack 7 (ER7) to its final location. During the crews morning, a smoke alarm sounded in the Russian segment of the station, which prompted the joint crew to move into emergency procedures. However the alarm was false and was cleared within a couple of minutes and all normal work resumed. Mission specialists Clay Anderson, Rick Mastracchio and Stephanie Wilson conducted in-flight interviews with Nebraska Public Radio, CBS Newspath and Radio Network and KETV-TV in Omaha
Omaha, Nebraska
Omaha is the largest city in the state of Nebraska, United States, and is the county seat of Douglas County. It is located in the Midwestern United States on the Missouri River, about 20 miles north of the mouth of the Platte River...

, Nebraska. Later in the day commander Alan Poindexter, pilot Jim Dutton and mission specialist Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger talked with students at the Naval Postgraduate School
Naval Postgraduate School
The Naval Postgraduate School is an accredited research university operated by the United States Navy. Located in Monterey, California, it grants master's degrees, Engineer's degrees and doctoral degrees...

 in Monterey
Monterey, California
The City of Monterey in Monterey County is located on Monterey Bay along the Pacific coast in Central California. Monterey lies at an elevation of 26 feet above sea level. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 27,810. Monterey is of historical importance because it was the capital of...

, California. At the end of the crews work day, the joint crew got together and reviewed the procedures for the second spacewalk. After the procedures review spacewalkers Clay Anderson and Rick Mastracchio entered the Quest airlock, closed the hatch and lowered the inside pressure to 10.2 psi. The pair also breathed pure oxygen for an hour while the pressure was being lowered.

11 April (Flight Day 7 – EVA 2)


On flight day 7 astronauts Clay Anderson and Rick Mastracchio performed their second spacewalk of the STS-131 mission. Mastracchio and Anderson exited the airlock at 05:30 UTC, a full 45 minutes ahead of the planned time, and spent 7 hours and 26 minutes outside the ISS. The pair removed the old Ammonia Tank Assembly (ATA) from the S1 truss and installed the new ATA. Anderson and Mastracchio ran into a small problem when one of the four bolts that holds the tank in place wouldn't turn. They loosened the other three and tried them all again and the fourth bolt was successfully tightened. The two spacewalkers helped guide the SSRMS to temporarily stow the old ATA on the truss structure. The new ATA had its electrical connections made, but the fluid connections were deferred until the third spacewalk since the EVA was behind the time-line. Mastracchio and Anderson also installed two radiator grapple fixture stowage beams on the P1 truss. While Anderson and Mastracchio were outside, members of the STS-131 crew continued transferring items from space shuttle Discoverys mid-deck and the MPLM Leonardo. Overall, the crew had completed about half of the transfer work.

12 April (Flight Day 8 – Off duty)



The joint STS-131/Expedition 23
Expedition 23
Expedition 23 was the twenty-third long-duration mission to the International Space Station . Expedition 23 began with the Soyuz TMA-16 undocking on 18 March 2010. Shortly thereafter cosmonauts Aleksandr Skvortsov and Mikhail Korniyenko and astronaut Tracy Caldwell Dyson arrived at the Space...

 crews had the morning off on flight day 8. After their morning off the crews continued their transfer activities, which are more than seventy percent complete. The crews also conducted several PAO events, including VIP events with Roscosmos
Russian Federal Space Agency
The Russian Federal Space Agency , commonly called Roscosmos and abbreviated as FKA and RKA , is the government agency responsible for the Russian space science program and general aerospace research. It was previously the Russian Aviation and Space Agency .Headquarters of Roscosmos are located...

, Russian president Dmitry Medvedev
Dmitry Medvedev
Dmitry Anatolyevich Medvedev is the third President of the Russian Federation.Born to a family of academics, Medvedev graduated from the Law Department of Leningrad State University in 1987. He defended his dissertation in 1990 and worked as a docent at his alma mater, now renamed to Saint...

, RSC Energia
S.P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia
OAO S.P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia , also known as RKK Energiya, is a Russian manufacturer of spacecraft and space station components...

, the Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), Japanese students, astronaut Mamoru Mohri
Mamoru Mohri
is a Japanese scientist, a former NASDA astronaut, and a veteran of two NASA space shuttle missions.-Biography:Born in Yoichi, Hokkaidō, Japan, Mohri earned degrees in chemistry from Hokkaido University and a Doctorate from Flinders University in Adelaide, South Australia, in 1976.Most of Mohri's...

, and Japanese dignitaries. Later commander Alan Poindexter, pilot Jim Dutton and mission specialists Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger and Stephanie Wilson participated in an in-flight interview with several American media outlets including Fox News, ABC World News and MSNBC
MSNBC
MSNBC is a cable news channel based in the United States available in the US, Germany , South Africa, the Middle East and Canada...

. While the PAO events were going on, Rick Mastracchio and Clay Anderson were preparing the spacesuits and tools they will use for the third and final spacewalk. Later in the day the pair will have a procedures review with other members of the ISS and shuttle crews. After the review, they will enter the airlock, close the hatch and lower the pressure to 10.2 psi and breathe pure oxygen for their campout.

13 April (Flight Day 9 – EVA 3)


On flight day 9, Rick Mastracchio and Clay Anderson completed the third and final spacewalk of the STS-131 mission. Their tasks included hooking up the ammonia and nitrogen lines to the new Ammonia Tank Assembly (ATA), installing the old ATA in the shuttle's payload bay, retrieving some Micro-Meteoroid Orbital Debris (MMOD) shields, bolting a grapple bar (which had been removed from the old ATA) onto the new ATA, and preparation of some cables on the Z1 truss and tools to be used during STS-132
STS-132
STS-132 was a NASA Space Shuttle mission, during which Space Shuttle Atlantis docked with the International Space Station on 16 May 2010. STS-132 was launched from the Kennedy Space Center on 14 May 2010. The primary payload was the Russian Rassvet Mini-Research Module, along with an Integrated...

. During the installation of the old ATA in Discoverys payload bay, the spacewalkers had some problems securing a bolt on the ATA to the LMC. The spacewalk took 6 hours and 24 minutes, bringing the total EVA time to 20 hours and 19 minutes. While the EVA was going on, commander Alan Poindexter and mission specialist Naoko Yamazaki continued transferring items from the MPLM to the ISS. Transfer is more than seventy-five percent complete.

14 April (Flight Day 10 – Final transfers/off duty)


The crew of STS-131 continued with transfer activities on the morning of flight day 10. The morning was devoted largely to transferring items to the MPLM Leonardo. There are only a few items awaiting transfer to space shuttle Discoverys mid-deck left. The crew enjoyed an hour long mid-day meal with the Expedition 23
Expedition 23
Expedition 23 was the twenty-third long-duration mission to the International Space Station . Expedition 23 began with the Soyuz TMA-16 undocking on 18 March 2010. Shortly thereafter cosmonauts Aleksandr Skvortsov and Mikhail Korniyenko and astronaut Tracy Caldwell Dyson arrived at the Space...

 crew. The entire joint crew took part in a crew photo, which was followed by a joint crew news conference with U.S., Russian and Japanese media. Later in the day commander Alan Poindexter, mission specialists Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger, Stephanie Wilson and Clayton Anderson took time out to talk with students from Eastern Guilford High School
Eastern Guilford High School
Eastern Guilford High School is a school located in Gibsonville, North Carolina. The school originally opened in 1974, and is the same school from which Torry Holt of the Jacksonville Jaguars and Terrence Holt of the New Orleans Saints graduated...

 in Gibsonville
Gibsonville, North Carolina
Gibsonville is a town in Alamance and Guilford counties in the U.S. state of North Carolina. It is part of the Greensboro-High Point, North Carolina Metropolitan Statistical Area...

, North Carolina and with third and fourth graders from that school district. The majority of the crews afternoon was spent off duty.




15 April (Flight Day 11 – MPLM unberthing)


On flight day 11 the MPLM Leonardos hatches were closed at 07:38 UTC (03:38 EDT) and the MPLM was unberthed from the nadir or earth facing port of the Harmony node at 20:24 UTC (16:24 EDT). It was placed in a low hover, about 3 foot (0.9144 m) above shuttle Discoverys payload bay. This was done because the MPLM was unberthed from Harmony later than planned. The delay in unberthing was caused by a set of bolts on the Common Berthing Mechanism (CBM) getting stuck due to a broken pin. The crew will finish putting Leonardo in the payload bay on flight day 12, prior to the docked late inspection. The crews conducted some transfer operations between the ISS and shuttle mid-deck, which brings the overall transfer operations to ninety-four percent complete for the mission.

16 April (Flight Day 12 – Late inspection)


On flight day 12, the crew of space shuttle Discovery secured the MPLM Leonardo in the payload bay for return to earth. Mission specialist Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger activated the latches to secure Leonardo in the payload bay at 07:15 UTC (03:15 EDT). After Leonardo was secured, Metcalf-Lindenburger, pilot Jim Dutton began the late inspection of Discoverys heat shield. The pair were joined by commander Alan Poindexter and mission specialist Naoko Yamazaki to complete the inspection of the shuttle's Reinforced Carbon-Carbon (RCC) panels on the wings and nose and the heat-resistant tiles. The scan which takes about 7 hours was completed 3 hours ahead of schedule, and was done while still docked to the International Space Station (ISS) due to the loss of the shuttles Ku-Band antenna.

17 April (Flight Day 13 – Undocking)


Space Shuttle Discovery successfully undocked from the International Space Station (ISS) at 12:52 UTC (08:52 EDT). Discovery was docked to the ISS for 10 days, 5 hours and 8 minutes. After Discovery departed from the ISS, pilot Jim Dutton took control of the shuttle and performed a fly around of the space station. The undocking was preceded by a farewell ceremony, where shuttle commander Alan Poindexter and station commander Oleg Kotov
Oleg Kotov
Oleg Valeriyevich Kotov was born October 27, 1965, in Simferopol, Crimean oblast in Ukrainian SSR. After a career as a military pilot, he joined the Russian cosmonaut corps. He has flown two long duration spaceflight on the International Space Station logging just short of a year in space...

 said farewells on behalf of their crews. After undocking the shuttle crew stowed the Orbiter Boom Sensor System
Orbiter Boom Sensor System
The Orbiter Boom Sensor System is a 50-foot boom carried on board NASA's Space Shuttles. The boom can be grappled by the Canadarm and serves as an extension of the arm, doubling its length to a combined total of 100 feet...

 (OBSS) and the Shuttle Remote Manipulator System (SRMS) since they will not be needed for the rest of the flight. The crew was also informed that Discoverys heat shield was cleared for re-entry in to Earth's atmosphere.


18 April (Flight Day 14 – Landing prep)


On flight day 14, the crew of space shuttle Discovery began their final preparations for landing. The crew packed and stowed away items they no longer need for the rest of the flight. Throughout the day commander Alan Poindexter and pilot Jim Dutton completed a series of checkouts of flight systems. These checks include 2 firings of the Reaction Control System
Reaction control system
A reaction control system is a subsystem of a spacecraft whose purpose is attitude control and steering by the use of thrusters. An RCS system is capable of providing small amounts of thrust in any desired direction or combination of directions. An RCS is also capable of providing torque to allow...

 (RCS) jets and a test of the Flight Control System (FCS). Once those checkouts were complete the pair began doing communications checkouts with the Merritt Island tracking station and tracking stations at the White Sands Space Harbor
White Sands Space Harbor
White Sands Space Harbor is the primary training area used by NASA for Space Shuttle pilots flying practice approaches and landings in the Shuttle Training Aircraft and T-38 Talon aircraft. Its runways, navigational aids, runway lighting, and control facilities also stand continuously ready as a...

 in New Mexico
New Mexico
New Mexico is a state located in the southwest and western regions of the United States. New Mexico is also usually considered one of the Mountain States. With a population density of 16 per square mile, New Mexico is the sixth-most sparsely inhabited U.S...

 and Dryden Flight Research Center
Dryden Flight Research Center
The Dryden Flight Research Center , located inside Edwards Air Force Base, is an aeronautical research center operated by NASA. On March 26, 1976 it was named in honor of the late Hugh L. Dryden, a prominent aeronautical engineer who at the time of his death in 1965 was NASA's deputy administrator...

 at Edwards Air Force Base
Edwards Air Force Base
Edwards Air Force Base is a United States Air Force base located on the border of Kern County, Los Angeles County, and San Bernardino County, California, in the Antelope Valley. It is southwest of the central business district of North Edwards, California and due east of Rosamond.It is named in...

. The crew also took time out of their day to conduct an in-flight interview with WBZ-AM in Boston, Massachusetts, the Associated Press
Associated Press
The Associated Press is an American news agency. The AP is a cooperative owned by its contributing newspapers, radio and television stations in the United States, which both contribute stories to the AP and use material written by its staff journalists...

 and KEZI-TV in Eugene
Eugene, Oregon
Eugene is the second largest city in the U.S. state of Oregon and the seat of Lane County. It is located at the south end of the Willamette Valley, at the confluence of the McKenzie and Willamette rivers, about east of the Oregon Coast.As of the 2010 U.S...

, Oregon.

19 April (Flight day 15 – First landing opportunity)


The crew of STS-131 awoke for flight day 15 and began their deorbit preparations. These preparations include closing the payload bay doors, activating the Flash Evaporator System (FES) and getting into their Advanced Crew Escape Suit
Advanced Crew Escape Suit
The Advanced Crew Escape Suit or "pumpkin suit", was a full pressure suit that began to be worn by Space Shuttle crews after STS-65, for the ascent and entry portions of flight. The suit is a direct descendant of the U.S...

s (ACES). The crew got as far as "fluid loading", where the crew consumes a set quantity of fluids to counteract the effects of gravity, in their deorbit preps. The crew was informed of the one orbit wave off about one hour prior to the deorbit burn. After the crew was told of the wave off, they held in their procedures to see if they would be given a go for the second landing opportunity. However, they were not given a go for the second chance and the crew began backing out of their deorbit preps. Both landing chances were waved off due to bad weather at the Kennedy Space Center
Kennedy Space Center
The John F. Kennedy Space Center is the NASA installation that has been the launch site for every United States human space flight since 1968. Although such flights are currently on hiatus, KSC continues to manage and operate unmanned rocket launch facilities for America's civilian space program...

.

20 April (Flight day 16 – Landing)


Space shuttle Discovery landed at 09:08 EDT (13:08 UTC) on runway 33 at Florida's Kennedy Space Center following a two-week mission in space.


Spacewalks


At least three spacewalks were planned for this mission.
The main objectives for the three EVAs were as follows:
EVA Spacewalkers Start (UTC
Coordinated Universal Time
Coordinated Universal Time is the primary time standard by which the world regulates clocks and time. It is one of several closely related successors to Greenwich Mean Time. Computer servers, online services and other entities that rely on having a universally accepted time use UTC for that purpose...

)
End (UTC) Duration
EVA 1 Rick Mastracchio 
Clayton Anderson
Clayton Anderson
Clayton Conrad Anderson is an American engineer and a NASA astronaut. Launched on STS-117, he replaced Sunita Williams on June 10, 2007 as a member of the ISS Expedition 15 crew.-Education:...

9 April 2010
05:31
9 April 2010
11:58
6 hours 27 minutes
The crew inside used the station's robotic arm to remove a new ammonia tank from shuttle's payload bay and temporarily stow it on the station. The spacewalkers then retrieved a seed experiment from outside the Japanese laboratory, installed a grapple bar to the new ammonia tank on the station's truss and replaced a failed gyroscope that is part of the station's navigation system, along with several get-ahead tasks.
EVA 2 Mastracchio
Anderson
11 April 2010
05:30
11 April 2010
12:56
7 hours 26 minutes
Crew members, using the station's arm, removed an empty ammonia tank from the station's truss and temporarily stowed it on an equipment cart. The new tank was then installed and electrical connections were made to it. The station's arm then temporarily stowed the old tank on another part of the station's structure until the mission's third spacewalk.
EVA 3 Mastracchio
Anderson
13 April 2010
06:14
13 April 2010
12:36
6 hours 24 minutes
Using the station's arm, the crew moved the old tank into the shuttle's payload bay for return to Earth. The spacewalkers also removed a grapple bar from the old ammonia tank and attached it to the new one. The pair then relocated a foot restraint and some tools and prepared some cables for the STS-132
STS-132
STS-132 was a NASA Space Shuttle mission, during which Space Shuttle Atlantis docked with the International Space Station on 16 May 2010. STS-132 was launched from the Kennedy Space Center on 14 May 2010. The primary payload was the Russian Rassvet Mini-Research Module, along with an Integrated...

 mission.

Wake-up calls


NASA began a tradition of playing music to astronauts during the Gemini program, which was first used to wake up a flight crew during Apollo 15
Apollo 15
Apollo 15 was the ninth manned mission in the American Apollo space program, the fourth to land on the Moon and the eighth successful manned mission. It was the first of what were termed "J missions", long duration stays on the Moon with a greater focus on science than had been possible on previous...

.
Each track is specially chosen, often by their families, and usually has a special meaning to an individual member of the crew, or is applicable to their daily activities.
Flight Day Song Artist Played for Links
Day 2 "Find Us Faithful" Steve Green Clay Anderson
Clayton Anderson
Clayton Conrad Anderson is an American engineer and a NASA astronaut. Launched on STS-117, he replaced Sunita Williams on June 10, 2007 as a member of the ISS Expedition 15 crew.-Education:...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 3 "I Will Rise" Chris Tomlin
Chris Tomlin
Christopher Dwayne "Chris" Tomlin is an American Christian Contemporary Music artist, worship leader, and songwriter from Grand Saline, Texas, United States. He is a former staff member at Austin Stone Community Church and is signed to EMI's sixstepsrecords. Tomlin also leads worship at many...

Jim Dutton WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 4 "Hato to Shōnen
Castle in the Sky
All compositions by Joe Hisaishi.#"The Girl Who Fell from the Sky" – 2:27#"Morning in Slag Ravine" – 3:04#"A Fun Brawl " – 4:27#"Memories of Gondoa" – 2:46#"Discouraged Pazu" – 1:46#"Robot Soldier " – 2:34...

" (The Pigeons and a Boy)
Joe Hisaishi
Joe Hisaishi
, known professionally as , is a composer and director known for over 100 film scores and solo albums dating back to 1981.While possessing a stylistically distinct sound, Hisaishi's music has been known to explore and incorporate different genres, including minimalist, experimental electronic,...

Naoko Yamazaki
Naoko Yamazaki
is a former Japanese female astronaut at JAXA, the second Japanese woman to qualified. The first was Chiaki Mukai.-Early life:Yamazaki was born Naoko Sumino in Matsudo City. She spent two years of her childhood in Sapporo...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 5 "Defying Gravity
Defying Gravity (song)
"Defying Gravity" is the signature song from the musical Wicked, composed by Stephen Schwartz, originally recorded by Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth on November 10, 2003, and released on December 16, 2003...

"
Idina Menzel
Idina Menzel
Idina Kim Menzel is an American actress, singer and songwriter. She is widely known for originating the roles of Maureen in Rent and Elphaba in Wicked.-Early life:...

 & Kristen Chenoweth
Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger
Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger
Dorothy Marie "Dottie" Metcalf-Lindenburger was born on May 2, 1975 in Colorado Springs, Colorado and married Jason Metcalf-Lindenburger, a seventh grade teacher at the time, in 2000. She was a science teacher at Hudson's Bay High School in Vancouver, Washington when she was selected in 2004 as an...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 6 "We Weren't Born to Follow
We Weren't Born to Follow
-Recording process:When Richie Sambora recorded the solo for this song, he played a very melodic, Beatles-esque break. But as soon as the song debuted at radio, many fans expressed dismay at the lack of a guitar solo...

"
Bon Jovi
Bon Jovi
Bon Jovi is an American rock band from Sayreville, New Jersey. Formed in 1983, Bon Jovi consists of lead singer and namesake Jon Bon Jovi , guitarist Richie Sambora, keyboardist David Bryan, drummer Tico Torres, as well as current bassist Hugh McDonald...

Rick Mastracchio WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 7 "Stairway To The Stars
Stairway to the Stars
"Stairway to the Stars" is a popular song composed by Matty Malneck and Frank Signorelli, with lyrics by Mitchell Parish.-Notable recordings:* Glen Miller and His Orchestra, vocals by Ray Eberle...

"
Ella Fitzgerald
Ella Fitzgerald
Ella Jane Fitzgerald , also known as the "First Lady of Song" and "Lady Ella," was an American jazz and song vocalist...

Stephanie Wilson
Stephanie Wilson
Stephanie Diana Wilson is an American engineer and a NASA astronaut. She flew on her first mission in space on board the Space Shuttle mission STS-121, and is the second African American woman to go into space, after Mae Jemison.-Education:In middle school, Wilson interviewed an Astronomy professor...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 8 "Because We Believe" Andrea Bocelli
Andrea Bocelli
Andrea Bocelli, is an Italian tenor, multi-instrumentalist and classical crossover artist. Born with poor eyesight, he became blind at the age of twelve following a soccer accident....

Alan Poindexter WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 9 "Galileo
Galileo (Indigo Girls song)
"Galileo" is a song written by Emily Saliers and recorded and performed by folk rock group the Indigo Girls. It was released in 1992 on their platinum-selling fourth studio album Rites of Passage. It reached #10 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart, the first song by the Indigo Girls to break...

"
Indigo Girls
Indigo Girls
The Indigo Girls are an American folk rock music duo, consisting of Amy Ray and Emily Saliers. They met in elementary school and began performing together as high school students in Decatur, Georgia, part of the Atlanta metropolitan area...

Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger
Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger
Dorothy Marie "Dottie" Metcalf-Lindenburger was born on May 2, 1975 in Colorado Springs, Colorado and married Jason Metcalf-Lindenburger, a seventh grade teacher at the time, in 2000. She was a science teacher at Hudson's Bay High School in Vancouver, Washington when she was selected in 2004 as an...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 10 "The Miracle of Flight" Mike Hyden Clay Anderson
Clayton Anderson
Clayton Conrad Anderson is an American engineer and a NASA astronaut. Launched on STS-117, he replaced Sunita Williams on June 10, 2007 as a member of the ISS Expedition 15 crew.-Education:...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 11 "The Earth in the Color of Lapis Lazuli" Seiko Matsuda
Seiko Matsuda
is a Japanese pop singer-songwriter. Due to her popularity in the 1980s and her long career, she has been dubbed the "Eternal idol" by the Japanese media.- Biography :...

Naoko Yamazaki
Naoko Yamazaki
is a former Japanese female astronaut at JAXA, the second Japanese woman to qualified. The first was Chiaki Mukai.-Early life:Yamazaki was born Naoko Sumino in Matsudo City. She spent two years of her childhood in Sapporo...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 12 Opening theme to Stargate SG-1
Stargate SG-1
Stargate SG-1 is a Canadian-American adventure and military science fiction television series and part of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer's Stargate franchise. The show, created by Brad Wright and Jonathan Glassner, is based on the 1994 feature film Stargate by Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich...

Joel Goldsmith
Joel Goldsmith
Joel Goldsmith is a composer of film, television, and video game music. He is the son of renowned composer Jerry Goldsmith. He was the main composer for the TV series Stargate SG-1, although the main titles were written by David Arnold...

Rick Mastracchio WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 13 "Joy" Newsboys
Newsboys
Newsboys are a Christian pop rock band founded in 1985 in Mooloolaba, Australia. They have released 15 studio albums, six of which have been certified gold...

Jim Dutton WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 14 "What A Wonderful World
What a Wonderful World
"What a Wonderful World" is a song written by Bob Thiele and George David Weiss. It was first recorded by Louis Armstrong and released as a single in 1968. Thiele and Weiss were both prominent in the music world . Armstrong's recording was inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1999...

"
Louis Armstrong
Louis Armstrong
Louis Armstrong , nicknamed Satchmo or Pops, was an American jazz trumpeter and singer from New Orleans, Louisiana....

Stephanie Wilson
Stephanie Wilson
Stephanie Diana Wilson is an American engineer and a NASA astronaut. She flew on her first mission in space on board the Space Shuttle mission STS-121, and is the second African American woman to go into space, after Mae Jemison.-Education:In middle school, Wilson interviewed an Astronomy professor...

WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 15 "Star Spangled Banner" Alan Poindexter WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT
Day 16 "On The Road Again
On the Road Again (Willie Nelson song)
"On the Road Again" is a song made famous by country music singer Willie Nelson, and is part of the soundtrack to the 1980 movie Honeysuckle Rose....

"
Willie Nelson
Willie Nelson
Willie Hugh Nelson is an American country music singer-songwriter, as well as an author, poet, actor, and activist. The critical success of the album Shotgun Willie , combined with the critical and commercial success of Red Headed Stranger and Stardust , made Nelson one of the most recognized...

The entire crew WAV, MP3
TRANSCRIPT

See also


External links