Commander Curt Brown, Pilot Steve Lindsey and Mission Specialist Scott Parazynski will release PANSAT, the Petite Amateur Naval Satellite, early this afternoon. PANSAT is a small non-retrievable satellite developed by the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey California. Designed to enhance the education of the military officers at the school through developing and observing its operation in space, PANSAT will capture and transmit radio signals that normally would be lost because the original signals were too weak or had too much interference.
Mission Specialists Steve Robinson and Parazynski will check out Discovery's Remote Manipulator System robot arm today to verify its operation prior to Sunday's scheduled deployment of the SPARTAN spacecraft for two days of free flight. During the checkout, they will survey the payload bay and also look at a possible loose tile on the left Orbital Manuevering System (OMS) engine pod, which was reported by Brown last night.
ESA Astronaut Pedro Duque and NASDA Astronaut Chiaki Mukai will check out and prepare the Middeck Glove Box, an enclosed research facility that will support numerous investigations throughout the mission. The glove box, referred to as MGBX, is a microwave sized research facility that provides the astronauts an opportunity to perform hands-on investigations in a controlled environment. Early this afternoon, Payload Specialist-2, John Glenn, will activate the MEPS experiment. MEPS, the Microgravity Encapsulation Process, studies the formation of capsules containing two kinds of anti-tumor drugs that could be delivered directly to solid tumors and has applications in chemotherapy treatments.
In addition, regularly scheduled exercise sessions and routine housekeeping chores also will occupy the crew's first full day on orbit, which promises to be a busy one for all seven members of the STS-95 crew. Flight Day 2 began at 7:45 a.m. central time today when the crew was awakened to the sounds of Louis Armstrong's "What A Wonderful World," played for Mission Specialist -2 Scott Parazynski from his wife, Gail.
Discovery is in an orbit with a high point of 349 statute miles and a low point of 340 statute miles, circling Earth once every one hour, 35 minutes and 54 seconds.