With the successful landing at the Kennedy Space Center (Florida) of the
orbiter Discovery at 1:31 a.m. local time (8:31 in Italy) on Wednesday
March 21, the crew of Expedition One of the International Space Station
returned to Earth, leaving the orbital complex in the hands of Expedition

Also returning on mission STS-102 was the Multi-Purpose Logistics Module
(MPLM) Leonardo, built by Alenia Spazio on behalf of the Italian Space
Agency (ASI) and the first non-US/Russian installation on the ISS.

Expedition One, made up of commander William Shepherd and Russian
cosmonauts Yuri Gidzenko and Sergei Krikalev, began its occupation of
the ISS in November 2000. During the stay, the Station increased in size
with the addition of the US solar array structure and the US Destiny
Laboratory Module. The crew also prepared the interior of the Station
for the arrival of future crews.

The next slated launch to the ISS is the orbiter Endeavour on April 19
on mission STS-100. This will be the ninth ISS flight and will mark
the first mission of the second Italian Space Agency MPLM, Raffaello,
carrying supplies and materials for the Station crew, and the arrival
of the Space Station Remote Manipulator System.

The seven-man crew of Endeavour will include the ESA astronaut from
Italy, Umberto Guidoni, who will become the first European on the Station.
The mission will last 11 days with landing targeted for April 30.

Alenia Spazio delivered Raffaello, the second flight model of the MPLM
reusable cargo carriers, to NASA in August 1999, while the third,
Donatello, arrived at Kennedy in February of this year. Each module has
been designed to fly 25 times over the 10-year operational life of the

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