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Discovery before rollback of the rotating service structure in preparation for launch on the STS-124 mission.

NASA

NASA

The setting sun backlights space shuttle Discovery on Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center just before rollback of the rotating service structure in preparation for launch on the STS-124 mission. The structure provides protected access to the shuttle for changeout and servicing of payloads at the pad. It is supported by a rotating bridge that pivots on a vertical axis on the west side of the pad's flame trench. After the RSS is rolled back, the orbiter is ready for fuel cell activation and external tank cryogenic propellant loading operations. The pad is cleared to the perimeter gate for operations to fill the external tank with about 500,000 gallons of cryogenic propellants used by the shuttle’s main engines. This is done at the pad approximately eight hours before the scheduled launch. The STS-124 mission is the second of three flights launching components to complete the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Kibo laboratory. The shuttle crew will install Kibo's large Japanese Pressurized Module and its remote manipulator system, or RMS. The 14-day flight includes three spacewalks. Launch is scheduled for 5:02 p.m. May 31. Photo credit: NASA/Troy Cryder

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  • Title: Discovery before rollback of the rotating service structure in preparation for launch on the STS-124 mission.
  • Location: Kennedy Space Center, FL
  • Owner: KSC
  • Album: cbabir
  • About Title: To help you find images you’re searching for, previously untitled images have been labelled automatically based on their description

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