KSC Contact: Bruce Buckingham

KSC Release No. 18-00

The orbiter Endeavour is scheduled to land at Kennedy Space Center on Tuesday, Feb. 22, at 4:50 p.m. EST completing its 11-day STS-99 mission that was launched from KSC Feb. 11, 2000.

Landing at KSC’s Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) is slated to occur on orbit 180 at mission elapsed time 11 days, 4 hours, 6 minutes. Deorbit burn will occur at about 3:53 p.m. EST.

Two KSC landing opportunities Tuesday are: 4:50 p.m. and 6:22 p.m.

Managers have decided to call up the back-up landing location at Edwards Air Force Base (EAFB), CA, for a possible landing there on Tuesday. One landing opportunity exists at EAFB on Tuesday at 7:48 p.m. EST.

If managers must keep Endeavour in orbit an additional day, two landing opportunities are available Wednesday at KSC and two at EAFB.

KSC Wednesday landing times are: 4:33 p.m. and 6:04 p.m. EST.

EAFB Wednesday landing times are: 5:58 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. EST.

This landing of Endeavour will mark the 50th landing at KSC in the history of Space Shuttle flight. It will be the 21st consecutive landing at KSC and the 28th in the last 29 shuttle flights. Endeavour is currently on the 97th Space Shuttle mission in the history of the program.

landing weather forecast

SLF and KSC Ground Operations

The Shuttle Landing Facility was built in 1975. It is 300 feet wide and 15,000 feet long with 1,000-foot overruns at each end. The strip runs northwest to southeast and is located about 3 miles northwest of the 525-foot tall Vehicle Assembly Building.

Once the orbiter is on the ground, safing operations will commence and the flight crew will prepare the vehicle for post-landing operations. The Crew Transport Vehicle (CTV) will be used to assist the crew, allowing them to leave the vehicle and remove their launch and re-entry suits easier and quicker.

The CTV and other KSC landing convoy operations have been “on-call” since the launch of Endeavour Feb. 11. The primary functions of the Space Shuttle recovery convoy are to provide immediate service to the orbiter after landing, assist crew egress, and prepare the orbiter for towing to the Orbiter Processing Facility.

Convoy vehicles are stationed at the SLF’s mid-point. About two hours prior to landing, convoy personnel will don SCAPE suits, or Self-Contained Atmospheric Protective Ensemble, and communications checks are made. A warming-up of coolant and purge equipment is conducted and nearly two dozen convoy vehicles are positioned to move onto the runway as quickly and as safely as possible once the orbiter coasts to a stop. When the vehicle is deemed safe of all potential explosive hazards and toxic gases, the purge and coolant umbilical access vehicles move into position at the rear of the orbiter.

Following purge and coolant operations, flight crew egress preparations will begin and the CTV will be moved into position at the crew access hatch located on the orbiter’s port side. A physician will board the Shuttle and conduct a brief preliminary examination of the astronauts. The crew will then make preparations to leave the vehicle.

Following departure from the SLF, the crew will be taken to their quarters in the O&C Building, meet with their families and undergo physical examinations. The crew is scheduled to depart for JSC Wednesday morning.

If Endeavour lands at Edwards, an augmented KSC convoy team will be on-site to safe the vehicle, disembark the crew and move the orbiter to the Mate/Demate Device. The turnaround team will be deployed to Edwards by charter aircraft on landing day.

About 3* hours after Endeavour lands at KSC, the orbiter will be towed to the Orbiter Processing Facility for post-flight deservicing.

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NOTICE TO EDITORS: The KSC press site will be open Tuesday, Feb. 22, from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Accredited news media wishing to view Endeavour’s landing should be at the KSC press site prior to 4 p.m. Tuesday for transport to the SLF.

Properly accredited news media requiring badges can pick them up at the Pass and Identification Office on State Road 3, south of KSC, from 12:30 ñ 4 p.m. Tuesday.

Additional specific information regarding landing photo opportunities, post-landing press conferences and KSC News Center operational hours is available at the KSC News Center and can be reached by calling 321-867-2468.