While performing touch-and-go landings over the Shuttle Landing Facility runway, STS-133 Commander Steve Lindsey and Pilot Eric Boe enjoyed a perfect sunset over NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Lindsey and Boe flew two Shuttle Training Aircraft (STA), which are Gulfstream II business jets modified to mimic the shuttle's handling during the final phase of landing. Practice landings are part of the Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test (TCDT), which provides each shuttle crew and launch team an opportunity to participate in various simulated activities, including equipment familiarization and emergency training at the launch pad.
Space shuttle Discovery and its STS-133 crew will deliver the Permanent Multipurpose Module, packed with supplies and critical spare parts, as well as Robonaut 2, the dexterous humanoid astronaut helper, to the International Space Station. Launch is targeted for Nov. 1 at 4:40 p.m. For more information on the STS-133 mission, visit www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle/shuttlemissions/sts133/. Photo credit: NASA/Dimitri Gerondidakis