Encyclopedia Astronautica
2008.02.17 - STS-122 MCC Status Report #21


The ten spaceflight crew members parted ways to their respective spacecraft today. After farewells were said, hatches between the space shuttle Atlantis and International Space Station were closed at 12:03 p.m. CST.

Atlantis' crew is scheduled to leave the space station on Monday, with undocking slated for 3:27 a.m. The departure sets up Atlantis for its scheduled landing at the Kennedy Space Center, Wednesday at 8:07 a.m.

Before closing hatches, the seven-member crew of Atlantis completed the final cargo transfers between the two spacecraft. Atlantis launched with one of heaviest middecks in the history of the shuttle program and will land with the heaviest middeck ever, weighing 2,040 pounds.

The most important transfer completed is the exchange of astronaut Daniel Tani for European Space Agency Astronaut Leopold Eyharts. Tani joined the station's Expedition 16 crew in October and is being replaced by Eyharts, who arrived at the station with the STS-122 crew. Eyharts will finish commissioning the Columbus laboratory.

In addition to delivering Columbus to the orbital outpost, Atlantis' astronauts performed three spacewalks to prepare the module for its scientific work, replaced an expended nitrogen tank on the station and retrieved a failed control moment gyroscope for return to Earth.

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