On Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, the vent line is detached from the ground umbilical carrier plate (GUCP) on the bright-orange external fuel tank. Next, the GUCP's 7-inch quick disconnect will be removed. A hydrogen gas leak at that location during tanking for space shuttle Discovery's STS-133 mission to the International Space Station caused the launch attempt to be scrubbed Nov. 5. The GUCP will be examined to determine the cause of the hydrogen leak and then repaired. The GUCP is the overboard vent to the pad and the flame stack where the vented hydrogen is burned off. Discovery's next launch attempt is no earlier than Nov. 30 at 4:02 a.m. EST.
For more information on STS-133, visit www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/shuttle/shuttlemissions/sts133/. Photo credit: NASA/Frankie Martin