Feeds

Discovery touches down in Florida

NASA prepping for next mission

High performance access to file storage

Shuttle has landed at the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida, after nearly a fortnight in space, and with one crew member less than when it took off.

The European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Thomas Reiter was not jettisoned unceremoniously when his team (Germany) exited the World Cup, but is now staying aboard the International Space Station (ISS). He will be the first space station inhabitant from outside either Russia or the US.

He'll stay there for the next six months, working on the Astrolab mission, a series of experiments in human psychology and physiology. He will also conduct investigations into microbiology, plasma physics and radiation dosimetry.

NASA has hailed the mission as a roaring success. "The mission, STS-121, succeeded in testing shuttle safety improvements, repairing a rail car on the International Space Station and producing never-before-seen, high-resolution images of the shuttle during and after its July 4th launch," it says in a press statement announcing the safe return of the crew.

The space agency said its engineers were pleased with the Shuttle's performance following its big aerodynamic changes.

The protuberance air load ramps, a section of the external fuel tank, were removed after Discovery's previous mission. During the launch last year, foam fell from this area, prompting huge concern and a long-running debate about the safety of launching any shuttle missions.

However, with the crew home safe, and all the major objectives of the mission achieved, preparations are already being made for the next flight. The Shuttle Atlantis is due to launch in late August or early September, when it will deliver more parts to the ISS. It will be Atlantis' first mission since October 2002. ®

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
IBM Hursley Park: Where Big Blue buries the past, polishes family jewels
How the internet of things has deep roots in the English countryside
Video games make you NASTY AND VIOLENT
Especially if you are bad at them and keep losing
Russian deputy PM: 'We are coming to the Moon FOREVER'
Plans to annex Earth's satellite with permanent base by 2030
Solar-powered aircraft unveiled for round-the-world flight
It's going to be a slow and sleepy flight for the pilots
LOHAN's Punch and Judy show relaunches Thursday
Weather looking good for second pop at test flights
Honeybee boffin STINGS OWN WEDDING TACKLE... for SCIENCE
Not the worst place to be stung, says one man
India's GPS alternative launches second satellite
Closed satnav system due to have all seven birds aloft by 2016
Curiosity finds not-very-Australian-shaped rock on Mars
File under 'messianic pastries' and move on, people
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.