The U.S. science laboratory Destiny, considered the centerpiece of the
International Space Station for the United States, will the subject of a
press opportunity to be held Thursday, Dec. 21 at KSC’s Space Station
Processing Facility. This event was scheduled for today, Dec. 20, but for
operational reasons has been rescheduled for Thursday, Dec. 21.

Destiny is nearing readiness for its upcoming launch. The two crew access
hatches have been closed and sealed for flight, the final milestone event
culminating over two years of launch processing. On Thursday morning, the
Destiny laboratory will be moved from its test and integration stand into
the Launch Package Integration Stand (LPIS) in for a weight and center of
gravity determination. This will be followed by installation into the
payload transportation canister later Thursday afternoon or early Friday
morning. Destiny will be taken to launch pad 39-A after the holidays for
placement into Space Shuttle Atlantis’ payload bay.

Media are invited to witness this milestone in International Space Station
processing as the Destiny laboratory is hoisted and moved to the LPIS stand.
Spokespersons from NASA and Boeing will be available to answer questions and
for interviews.

Media representatives present for the event are requested to wear long pants
and closed-toe shoes while inside the Space Station Processing Facility.
Clean room attire will not be required for this event, however as is
customary, no food, tobacco, lighters or matches are permitted inside the
high bay. Electronic flash photography is permitted. The lighting in the
facility is mercury.

Those planning to attend should be at the KSC News Center Thursday, Dec. 21
at 6:30 a.m. to be taken to the Space Station Processing Facility.

The Destiny laboratory module is 28 feet in length, 14 feet in diameter, and
weighs 32,000 pounds. It is to be a world-class, state-of-the-art research
facility functioning in microgravity. The lab will provide astronauts a
shirtsleeve environment for research in many areas including life and
microgravity sciences, Earth science, and space science research.