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Discovery docking with ISS, STS-114

Discovery docking with ISS, STS-114


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Space shuttle Discovery docking with the International Space Station, from where this photograph was taken. The MPLM transfer pod is seen in the cargo bay at centre right. This was during mission STS-114, the Return to Flight, the first shuttle mission since the loss of Columbia on 1st February 2003. A near-repeat of the accident that downed Columbia, falling foam from the main tank during launch damaging the heat shield, led to extensive photographic surveys of the heat shields and a lengthy spacewalk to repair two tiles. After the shuttle landed safely on 9th August, the remaining shuttle fleet was grounded until the falling foam problem could be definitively resolved. Photographed on 28th July 2005.

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