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NASA’s Space Shuttle Discovery Set To Return To Florida


EDWARDS, Calif. -- After landing at Edwards Air Force Base in California on Sept. 11, space shuttle Discovery is about to start its cross-country journey back to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Following the successful STS-128 mission to the International Space Station, Discovery was mounted on a modified Boeing 747 shuttle carrier aircraft. Discovery is expected to begin its journey from NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center in Edwards, Calif., to Kennedy as early as Friday, Sept. 18. The exact date and time of departure have yet to be set because of changing weather conditions and the fluid nature of preparing Discovery for the flight. For recorded updates about the ferry flight, journalists should call 321-867-2525 or 661-276-2564.

Live status updates will be added periodically to the NASA News Twitter feed during the flight. To access the feed, visit:

NASA Television will provide live coverage of Discovery’s departure and arrival. For the NASA TV downlink, the schedule of ferry flight coverage and streaming video information, visit:

NASA will provide reporters, photographers and videographers with two opportunities to take imagery of Discovery while it is being prepared at Dryden. The first opportunity will be from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. PDT on Thursday, Sept. 17, while preparations for Discovery’s ferry flight are being completed. An informal briefing may be included on the work under way at the site. There will be a second opportunity when the ferry flight takes off.

Because of the short notice involved, these opportunities at Edwards are restricted to U.S. citizens representing domestic news organizations. On Thursday, reporters will be transported in an escorted convoy from the Edwards Air Force Base West Gate security station on Rosamond Blvd. to Dryden. The convoy will leave promptly at 1:15 p.m.

For the ferry flight departure, journalists will be escorted in a convoy to the viewing site. Space is limited to two representatives per news organization, or a total of about 30. Preference will be given to photographers and videographers, although print journalists are welcome as space allows.

Reporters who were credentialed to cover Discovery’s landing at Dryden should contact Alan Brown at 661-276-2665 to confirm participation. All others should e-mail a credential request with their full name, media organization, place and date of birth, driver’s license number and its issuing state, and last six digits of their social security number to no later than noon Wednesday for either media opportunity. Further guidance regarding arrival times and other details for the ferry flight opportunity will be provided via e-mail when the schedule is set.

Strict flight weather restrictions may cause unexpected changes to the flight path and arrival time of Discovery in Florida. All media representatives should be at Kennedy’s news center one hour and 15 minutes ahead of Discovery’s announced arrival time for transportation to the Shuttle Landing Facility.

STS-128 U.S. media credentials will be honored at Kennedy for Discovery’s return. International media credentials are no longer valid. TV stations planning on covering the arrival live from the shuttle runway must have proper credentials. For safety, journalists must follow a dress code for the landing site: no skirts, no shorts, no sleeveless shirts, and only closed-toed, flat shoes.

For more information about Discovery’s mission to the space station and NASA’s Space Shuttle Program, visit:


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