WASHINGTON – NASA will hold a media teleconference Friday, May 11, no earlier than 3 p.m. EDT to discuss the space shuttle Atlantis’ external fuel tank. The tank has been repaired after a hail storm struck Kennedy Space Center, Fla. The teleconference follows a meeting to schedule the shuttle’s return to the launch pad for the upcoming mission, STS-117.

The briefing participants are:

— Bill Gerstenmaier, associate administrator, Space Operations Mission Directorate
— Wayne Hale, manager, Space Shuttle Program
— John Chapman, manager, External Tank Project
— Mike Leinbach, NASA launch director

To participate, reporters must R.S.V.P. to John Yembrick at 202-358-0602 by 10 a.m. EDT Friday. NASA will stream live audio of the event at:


Video of the repaired fuel tank will air on NASA TV’s Video File. For downlink and scheduling information and links to streaming video, visit:


For photographs of the tank and information on the STS-117 mission, visit: