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Shuttle landing delayed 19.4.10

sts-131-spacewalk An unexpected cloud ceiling settled over the Kennedy Space Center area preventing space shuttle Discovery’s first landing opportunity. Mission controllers are hopeful that the cloud deck will clear out in time for the second opportunity at 10:23 a.m. EDT.

Left:Astronaut Rick Mastracchio works in the payload bay of space shuttle Discovery during the first spacewalk of the STS-131 mission.

The mission plan for discovery included delivering supplies and equipment to the International Space Station. Inside the shuttle’s cargo bay is the Leonardo Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM), a pressurized “moving van” that was temporarily installed at the station. The module was used to deliver supplies, a new crew sleeping quarters and science racks that were transferred to the station’s laboratories. The 13-day mission also included three spacewalks to switch out a
gyroscope on the station’s truss, or backbone, install a spare ammonia storage tank (and return a used one) and retrieve a Japanese experiment from the station’s exterior.

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