Sunday, November 30, 2008

1105a 11/30 Update: Florida landing ruled out for Sunday

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CBS NEWS STS-126 STATUS REPORT: 86
Posted: 11:05 AM, 11/30/08

By William Harwood
CBS News Space Analyst

Changes and additions:

   SR-84 (11/30/08): Endeavour astronauts gear up for landing; Florida weather forecast worsens
   SR-85 (11/30/08): Shuttle crew passes up first landing opportunity
   SR-86 (11/30/08): Second Florida landing opportunity waved off; crew sets up for California landing pending final weather update

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11:05 AM, 11/30/08, Update: Second Florida landing opportunity waved off; crew sets up for California landing pending final weather update


High winds and low clouds forced Flight Director Bryan Lunney to wave off two Florida landing opportunities for the shuttle Endeavour today. The astronauts now are gearing up for a California landing at Edwards Air Force Base at 4:25 p.m., but Lunney is holding open the option of extending the mission another day if forecasters see signs of improvement in the Florida outlook for Monday.

The latest forecast for Monday at the Kennedy Space Center calls for low clouds and high crosswinds. While conditions are expected to improve compared to Sunday's, the crosswinds are still expected to be out of limits.

Commander Christopher Ferguson and his six crewmates, meanwhile, were told to close the shuttle's cargo bay doors and to ready the ship for a de-orbit rocket firing at 3:19:24 p.m. to begin the hourlong glide to Edwards. Lunney could delay a final decision on whether to proceed with the "burn" or wave off again until just a few minutes before the rocket firing.

Forecasters are expecting ideal conditions at Edwards on Sunday and Monday.

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Quick-Launch Web Links:

CBS News STS-126 Status Reports:
http://www.cbsnews.com/network/news/space/current.html

CBS News STS-126 Quick-Look Page:
http://www.cbsnews.com/network/news/space/currentglance.html

NASA ISS Expeditions Page:
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/expeditions/index.html

NASA Shuttle Web: http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/shuttle/index.html
NASA Station Web: http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/station/index.html
Spaceflight Now: http://spaceflightnow.com/index.html
GoogleSatTrack: http://www.lizard-tail.com/isana/tracking/

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