Feeds

ISS toilet spares stowed and good to go

Discovery relief mission blasts off tomorrow

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Relief is at hand for the cross-legged ISS crew in the form of spares for the clapped-out Russian ASU toilet, which have been stowed aboard Space Shuttle Discovery due to blast off tomorrow.

Technician loading ISS toilet spares onto DiscoveryThe parts (seen here during loading), including a pump, will hopefully allow astronauts to take a bother-free leak. While the ISS's main toilet still works for solid waste, it requires "additional steps for liquid waste" and needs ten minutes maintenance by two crew members after three flushes, according to NASA.

The agency mercifully doesn't go into details, and deputy International Space Station program manager Kirk Shireman simply offered: "It is very inconvenient at this time because it requires a lot of manual intervention."

The outlook for Saturday's Space Shuttle launch (slated for 21:02 GMT) is favourable, with "80 per cent chance of acceptable [weather] conditions at launch time". LeRoy Cain, chairman of the Mission Management Team, confirmed: "The vehicle and the crew and the weather and the [launch] team are all ready to go."

Discovery's principal task on its 14-day STS-124 mission is to deliver the second consignment of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Kibo laboratory, constisting of the large Japanese Pressurized Module and robotic arm system.

The spacecraft will also drop off new ISS crew member Greg Chamitoff and bring back Flight Engineer Garrett Reisman at the end of a three-month stay aboard the outpost. NASA has a mission summary here (pdf). ®

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
Asteroid's SHOCK DINO MURDER SPREE just bad luck - boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Bad back? Show some spine and stop popping paracetamol
Study finds common pain-killer doesn't reduce pain or shorten recovery
Forty-five years ago: FOOTPRINTS FOUND ON MOON
NASA won't be back any time soon, sadly
Jurassic squawk: Dinos were Earth's early FEATHERED friends
Boffins research: Ancient dinos may all have had 'potential' fluff
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.