Feeds

'3-2-1 ... Good Morning Atlantis!'

Kennedy workers' emotional salute to last ever shuttle crew

Intelligent flash storage arrays

The crew of space shuttle Atlantis were this morning roused by a message from employees of Kennedy Space Center, preceded by a snippet of Aaron Copland's Fanfare for the Common Man.

The Kennedy personnel took to the tarmac to shout: "Three... two... one... Good morning, Atlantis! Kennedy salutes you. See you back at wheels stop!"

On board Atlantis, Commander Chris Ferguson, pilot Doug Hurley, and mission specialists Sandy Magnus and Rex Walheim have stowed kit, and tested the shuttle's control surfaces and thrusters ahead of tomorrow's return to Kennedy.

Following those standard pre-landing procedures, they deployed the Pico-Satellite Solar Cell (PSSC 2) tech demonstration satellite from the shuttle's cargo bay. The diminutive 5" x 5" x 10" (12.7 x 12.7 x 25.4cm) nanosat is, according to page 100 of NASA's STS-135 mission press pack (PDF), packing two experiments.

NASA explains: "First, the Miniature Tracking Vehicle (MTV) experiment goal is to demonstrate the capability of a nano-satellite to serve as an orbiting reference for ground tracking systems while demonstrating 3-axis attitude control; solid rocket propulsion for orbit modification; adaptive communications; and active solar cell performance monitoring in a nanosatellite platform.

"The second experiment, Compact Total Electron Content Sensor (CTECS), will demonstrate a CubeSat form factor space weather sensor with the capability to detect ionospheric density. It uses a modified commercial GPS receiver to detect differences in radio signals generated by occulting GPS satellites."

NASA sombrely notes that PSSC 2 will be "the last satellite ever deployed by the Space Shuttle Program".

NASA has everything you need to know about the final flight of Atlantis right here. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.