Doublers' Installed on Tank Stringers

  • Technicians at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida installed new sections of metal, called "doublers" because they are twice as thick as the original stringer metal, to replace the two cracked stringers on space shuttle Discovery's external fuel tank. Caps at the end of the stringers will be installed this morning. Primer application for the replacement foam insulation also will begin this morning.

    At yesterday’s Program Requirements Control Board, or PRCB, the Space Shuttle Program clearly identified the analysis and repairs that are required to safely launch shuttle Discovery on its STS-133 mission. This analysis will be reviewed at a special PRCB on Wednesday, Nov. 24. Pending a successful review of the flight rationale at that meeting, a Launch Status Briefing would be held with senior NASA management on Monday, Nov. 29.

    The Launch Status Briefing and news conference planned for Monday, Nov. 22 are cancelled. The Kennedy Space Center “Call-to-Stations” to begin the launch countdown will be no earlier than Nov. 30, supporting a first launch attempt no earlier than Dec. 3 at about 2:52 a.m. EST.

  • Space Shuttle Mission: STS-133

    Technicians connect the vent line to the GUCP.

    above: On Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, technicians reattach the vent line to the ground umbilical carrier plate, or GUCP, on space shuttle Discovery's external fuel tank. Photo credit: NASA/Ben Smegelsky

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