Saturday, September 19, 2009

Shuttle Team Looks to Sunday to Start Ferry Flight

Saturday, September 19, 2009
Dynamic weather will keep shuttle Discovery’s ferry flight at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., at least through Saturday. Teams now are looking at Sunday to begin the 2,500 mile cross-country trip to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Fla.

Shuttle managers met at NASA’s Dryden Research Center this afternoon to assess ferry flight preparations and weather conditions across the southeastern United States. Forecasters still are tracking a low pressure system over Texas that has been influencing weather across the southeast.‪ Managers decided the forecast was too dynamic and unstable to try to begin the flight Saturday.

Discovery is expected to be attached to the top of a modified 747 jet, called a Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, and be ready for its piggyback ride to Florida by Friday evening.

Managers will meet again with air crews and the weather team at 2 p.m. EDT Saturday to discuss how possible a Sunday morning departure would be and decide the best route to get Discovery back to Kennedy within two days, weather permitting.


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