THURSDAY, JANUARY 27, 2000 (2:00 PM EST)

MISSION: STS-99 — Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM)

  • VEHICLE: Endeavour/OV-105
  • LOCATION: Pad 39A
  • TARGET KSC LAUNCH DATE/TIME: Jan. 31, 2000 at 12:47 p.m. EST
  • TARGET KSC LANDING DATE/TIME: Feb. 11, 2000 at 4:55 p.m. EST
  • LAUNCH WINDOW: 2 hours and 2 minutes
  • MISSION DURATION: 11 days and 4 hours
  • CREW: Kregel, Gorie, Kavandi, Voss, Mohri, Thiele
  • ORBITAL ALTITUDE and INCLINATION: 126 nautical miles/57 degrees

Work in progress: At Launch Pad 39A, work continues in preparation for Monday’s launch of Shuttle Endeavour. This week, workers completed Shuttle ordnance installation and the aft compartment doors were installed yesterday. Endeavour’s reaction control and maneuvering systems have been pressurized for flight and early flight crew equipment stowage is complete.

Today at about noon, the STS-99 flight crew arrived at KSC to make final preparation for their upcoming flight. Over the next few days, crew members will review mission procedures, conduct test flights in the Shuttle Training Aircraft and undergo routine preflight medical exams. The launch countdown begins tomorrow at 5:30 p.m. and will be conducted in Control Room No. 3 in KSC’s Launch Control Center.

The preliminary weather outlook indicates a 70 percent chance of favorable weather on launch day. The primary issues are the possibility of thick clouds and winds out of the northwest at 10- peaking to 15 knots. The temperature on Monday is expected to be about 60 degrees at launch time.

Processing Milestones:
Launch countdown begins (Jan. 28 at 5:30 p.m.)
Power reactant storage and distribution system loaded (Jan. 29)
Rotating Service Structure retracted (Jan. 30 at about 6:30 p.m.)
External tank loading (Jan. 31, 4 – 7 a.m.)

Near Term Space Shuttle Manifest Brief:

To preserve an option to fly an additional Space Shuttle mission this year to perform maintenance on the International Space Station, Shuttle and Station managers today decided to formally plan a revision to the content of Shuttle mission STS-101. The planning will allow the orbiter Atlantis to visit the Station in April if needed, ahead of the arrival of the Russian Zvezda service module, to perform maintenance. However, managers could decide as late as March to return to the original planned content for STS-101 and eliminate the added mission based on the launch date selected for the Russian Zvezda service module by the Station program.

The option including a Station maintenance flight would distribute the original content of STS-101 between two Shuttle missions. The first mission, now targeted for launch no earlier than April 13 aboard Atlantis, will retain the STS-101 designation but be a 10-day long flight to perform maintenance on the International Space Station’s Zarya and Unity modules. The second mission, which would be designated STS-106 and remains under review by managers, would be a Zvezda module outfitting mission that would dock with the Station about one month after Zvezda’s launch.

The plan for near-term Shuttle and International Space Station launches now includes:

Date Mission/Vehicle Payload
1/31/00 STS-99/Endeavour Space Radar Topography Mission
NET 4/13/00 STS-101/Atlantis ISS maintenance/Assembly Flt 2A.2a
TBD ISS-1R/Proton Zvezda service module/Assembly Flt 1R
TBD Possible STS-106/TBD ISS Zvezda outfitting/Assembly Flt 2A.2b

Whether or not STS-106 will be required and any necessary adjustments to the target launch dates for subsequent Shuttle flights will be dependent on the launch date scheduled for Zvezda. A launch date for Zvezda is expected to be selected following an International Space Station Joint Program Review to be held next month. The composition of crews for a revised STS-101 and STS-106 is under review.