STS-106 (99)

Atlantis (22)
Pad 39-B (46)
99th Shuttle Mission
22nd Flight OV-104
KSC Landing (52)
Night Landing (15)

NOTE: Click Here for Countdown Homepage


Terrence W. Wilcutt (4), Commander
Scott D. Altman (2), Pilot
Daniel C. Burbank (1), Mission Specialist
Edward T. Lu (2), Mission Specialist
Richard A. Mastracchio (1), Mission Specialist
Yuri Ivanovich Malenchenko (2), (RUSSIA) Mission Specialist
Boris V. Morukov (1), (RUSSIA) Mission Specialist


OPF -- 5/29/00 (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 5/29/2000)
VAB -- 8/07/00 (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 8/07/2000)
PAD -- 8/13/00 (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 8/11/2000)


4th Space Station Flight ISS-2A.2b (SPACEHAB/DM,ICC)

Mission Objectives:

Click here for Additional Info on STS-106

Space Station assembly flight ISS-2A.2b will utilize the SPACEHAB Double Module and the Integrated Cargo Carrier (ICC) to bring supplies to the station. The mission will also include 2 spacewalks.

Veteran Astronaut Terry Wilcutt (Col., USMC) leads the seven-man crew, commanding his second Shuttle flight and making his fourth trip into space. During the planned 11-day mission, Wilcutt and his crew mates will spend a week inside the ISS unloading supplies from both a double SPACEHAB cargo module in the rear of Atlantis's cargo bay and from a Russian Progress M-1 resupply craft docked to the aft end of the Zvezda Service Module. Zvezda, which linked up to the ISS on July 26, will serve as the early living quarters for the station and is the cornerstone of the Russian contribution to the ISS.

The goal of the flight is to prepare Zvezda for the arrival of the first resident, or Expedition, crew later this fall and the start of a permanent human presence on the new outpost. That crew, Expedition Commander Bill Shepherd, Soyuz Commander Yuri Gidzenko and Flight Engineer Sergei Krikalev, is due to launch in a Soyuz capsule from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan in late October for a four-month "shakedown" mission aboard the ISS.

In addition, Dr. Ed Lu and Yuri Malenchenko (Col., Russian Air Force), both making their second flights into space, will conduct a 6-hour space walk on the fourth day of the flight to hook up electrical, communications and telemetry cables between Zvezda and the Zarya Control Module, whose computers handed over commanding functions to the Service Module's computers in a smooth transition in late July. Lu and Malenchenko will also install a magnetometer to the exterior of Zvezda. The magnetometer will serve as a three-dimensional compass designed to minimize Zvezda propellent usage by relaying information to the module's computers regarding its orientation relative to the Earth.

It will be the second joint U.S.-Russian space walk outside a Space Shuttle, following on the work conducted by Astronaut Scott Parazynski and Cosmonaut Vladimir Titov outside Atlantis while docked to the Mir Space Station during the STS-86 mission in October 1997. Lu, designated EV 1, will wear the space suit marked by red stripes, while Malenchenko, EV 2, will wear the pure white suit. This will be Lu's first space walk, while Malenchenko conducted a pair of space walks totaling 12 hours during his four-month stay aboard Mir in 1994. Dan Burbank (Lt. Cmdr, USCG), who is a space rookie, will serve as the space walk choreographer.

Mission Specialist Rick Mastracchio, also a space novice, will be the prime robot arm operator for the mission, using the Canadian-built arm to move Lu and Malenchenko around the ISS as they conduct their assembly work. Mastracchio is backed up on arm operations by Pilot Scott Altman (Cmdr., USN), making his second flight into space.

The final member of the crew is Russian Cosmonaut Dr. Boris Morukov, making his first flight into space. Morukov will be responsible for unloading supplies from the Progress vehicle during the docked phase of the flight.

When Wilcutt guides Atlantis in for its docking with the ISS on the third day of the mission, he will find the new station a much larger facility than the one left by the STS-101 crew during its flight in May. With the addition of the Zvezda and the Progress resupply ship, the ISS will measure 143 feet in length, roughly the height of a 13-story building, and will weigh 67 tons, twice the size of the ISS back in May. The joining of Zvezda to the ISS and the arrival of the Progress provides about 8,800 cubic feet of habitable volume for Station crew members, roughly the size of a comfortable apartment. By the time the U.S. Laboratory Destiny is installed on the ISS in January, the Station will have surpassed both Skylab and Mir in total livable space.

On the fifth day of the flight, Atlantis's crew will enter the ISS, opening the hatch for the first time to Zvezda and to the Progress to begin unloading 1,300 pounds of goods from the Russian craft for the first resident crew, including items ranging from clothing to medical kits, personal hygiene kits, laptop computers, a color printer, vacuum cleaners, food warmers for Zvezda's galley, trash bags and critical life support hardware, including an Elektron oxygen generation unit and a Vozdukh carbon dioxide removal unit. Elektron and Vozdukh will be unstowed from the Progress and moved into Zvezda, but will not be installed and activated until the Expedition One crew arrives on board. The first toilet for the ISS will be delivered to Zvezda on the last day of the crew's work inside the Station for installation this fall once the Expedition 1 crew is on board.

Among the first tasks facing Atlantis's crew will be the installation of three batteries and associated electronic components in Zvezda and replacement of two of the six batteries in the Zarya module, completing the work begun by the STS-101 crew in May. Zvezda was launched from Baikonur on July 12 with five of its eight battery sets already installed. Lu and Malenchenko will be in charge of the installation work in Zvezda. Also earmarked for Zvezda is the activation of two gas masks which will serve as standard emergency equipment for ISS crews and three fire extinguishers. In addition, American-Russian power conversion units will be installed in Zvezda on this flight to route electricity from huge solar arrays which will be installed on the STS-97 mission to the Russian modules. Electrical components to charge the batteries of Soyuz or Progress vehicles visiting the ISS will be installed in Zvezda as well.

While Morukov spends most of his time unloading supplies from the Progress, Mastracchio will be in charge of unloading 2 tons of equipment from the SPACEHAB module, including medical equipment for the ISS' Crew Health Care System, or CheCS, which will serve as the heart of the station's clinic for orbiting crews, and a treadmill device and bicycle ergometer which will serve as the first exercise gear for crews on board the ISS. Associated hardware for the treadmill which will prevent its use from disturbing sensitive microgravity experiments, will be installed by the crew members near the end of their stay on board.

On the tenth day of the flight, Atlantis will undock from the ISS and Altman will conduct a flyaround of the newly expanded station to enable his crew mates to conduct photo documentation of the outpost.

Two days later, Wilcutt will fly Atlantis to a predawn landing at the Kennedy Space Center. setting the stage a few days later for the launch of a second Russian Progress ship to the Station and a plethora of Shuttle assembly flights to turn the complex into a working research facility.


Launch September 8, 2000 Time 8:45:47 a.m EDT. Launch window was 3 minutes 57 seconds

On Friday, September 8, 2000, tanking began slightly later than planned at 12:15a.m. and was completed approximately 3 hours later. The crew ate a preflight breakfast at 3:50am. At T-minus 3 hours and holding (4:27am EDT) the crew completed its weather briefing and at 4:32 a.m. EDT, prepared to suit up for flight. At 4:50am EDT the countdown clock came out of the planned T-minus 3 hour hold. At 4:56 a.m. the crew departed the Operations and Checkout building for the 8 mile journey the Launch Pad 39-B. At 5:19 a.m. EDT the crew arrived at the white room and began entering the orbiter. At 6:25 a.m. EDT with the countdown clock at the T-minus 1 hour and 25 minute mark Air to Ground communications checks were complete and the closeout crew prepared to close the hatch. At 6:40 a.m.EDT the hatch was closed and locked for flight. At 7:51 a.m. EDT the countdown clock entered the planned hold at the T-minus 9 minute mark where weather forcasters continue to monitor weather conditions. At 8:32 a.m EDT the launch team was polled and gave a final clearance for launch. At 8:37 a.m. EDT the countdown came out of the hold and entered the final launch countdown sequence. Launch occured at the opening of the window at 8:45:47 a.m. EDT. Main Engine Cutoff occured at a mission elapsed time of 8 min 50 sec.

On Wednesday, September 6, 2000, preparation for launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis on Friday morning continues to go well. Engineers in the launch control room are not working any significant issues. Last night, thunderstorms in the KSC vicinity did delay some routine work at the pad. Loading of Atlantis' onboard cryogenic tanks began at noon today and will conclude later tonight. The minor slowdown will be absorbed into the launch countdown's built-in hold time with no impact to launch. At 5:56 p.m. yesterday, the lightning protection system or lightning mast at Launch Pad 39B sustained a lightning strike. Subsequent checks confirmed that the lightning protection system performed as expected with no damage to the Shuttle or ground support equipment. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 9/06/2000)

On Thursday, August 24, 2000, KSC is no longer in any "Hurricane Condition" as a result of Hurricane Debby taking a more westerly turn overnight and being downgraded to a tropical wave. Shuttle managers will monitor tropical weather activity as work at the pad continues on schedule. Prelaunch hypergolic propellant loading operations continue today. Preparations are also underway for a scheduled hot fire of auxiliary power unit No. 1 on Friday.(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 8/24/2000)

On Tuesday, August 22, 2000, At the launch pad, technicians have completed efforts to mate the SPACEHAB tunnel inside orbiter Atlantis and payload interface verification testing is ongoing. The Helium Signature Test continues today. Further Shuttle processing will continue on schedule with prelaunch propellant loading beginning tomorrow, pending management's decision on hurricane preparedness. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 8/22/2000)

On Friday, August 11, 2000 OrbiterAtlantis is mated to the external tank and solid rocket boosters in VAB high bay 1. The Shuttle Interface Test is ongoing from firing room 1 in the Launch Control Center. The SPACEHAB payload was delivered to Launch Pad 39B today at 3:20 a.m. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 8/11/2000)

On Monday, August 7, 2000, at about 10:40 a.m. today, workers began moving orbiterAtlantis to the VAB in preparation for orbiter/external tank mating operations. The orbiter will be connected to the sling this afternoon, and lifted into high bay 1 tonight. Atlantis will be hardmated to the external tank early tomorrow morning. The Space Shuttle vehicle will be powered up on Thursday for the standard Shuttle Interface Test. Early Saturday, the entire Shuttle stack will move to VAB high bay 2 as part of final VAB safe haven fit check. Shuttle Atlantis is scheduled to roll out to Launch Pad 39B from VAB high bay 2 at about 11 p.m. on Aug. 13. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 8/07/2000)

On 6/4/2000, technicians began preparations to remove Shuttle Atlantis' three main engines. Heat shield removal is ongoing and engine removal begins later this week. The payload bay doors were opened Friday and workers disconnected the payload from the orbiter over the weekend. Payload removal efforts are planned for today. Post-flight evaluations of the orbiter's auxiliary power converter unit (APCU) No. 1 confirmed that the unit is in good health and need not be replaced. Checks of the forward reaction control system begin in about two days. (Reference KSC Shuttle Status 6/05/2000)

On Friday, February 18, 2000, managers from NASA's Space Shuttle and International Space Station (ISS) programs confirmed plans to fly an additional Space Shuttle mission to the ISS this year. The plan distributes the original STS-101 mission objectives between two flights: STS-101 and STS-106. With both missions slated for flight aboard Shuttle Atlantis, mission STS-101 remains targeted for launch no earlier than April 13 and the STS-106 launch will occur no earlier than Aug. 19. Astronauts on the new STS-106 mission will complete service module support tasks on orbit, transfer supplies and outfit ISS for the first long-duration crew.


Altitude: 173 nm
Inclination: 51.6
Orbits: 185
Duration: 11 days, 19 hours, 12 minutes, 15 seconds.
Distance: 4.9 million miles


ET : ET-103A
SSME-1: SN-2052
SSME-2: SN-2044
SSME-3: SN-2047


September 19, 2000 KSC 3:56 a.m. EDT KSC Runway 15

The deorbit burn to bringAtlantis in for a landing on runway 15 at Kennedy Space Center occured on time at 2:50 a.m. EDT.

Main Gear Touchdown 3:56:48 a.m EDT (MET 11 days 19 hours 11 min 2 sec)
Nose Gear Touchdown 3:56:57 a.m.EDT (MET 11 days 19 hours 11 min 11 sec)
Wheel Stop 3:58:01 a.m.EDT (MET 11 days 19 hours 12 min 15 sec)

Mission Highlights:

STS-106 Flight Day 1 Highlights:
STS-106 Flight Day 2 Highlights:
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STS-106 Flight Day 11 Highlights:
STS-106 Flight Day 12 Highlights:

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Last Updated Friday June 29 11:37:08 EDT 2001
Jim Dumoulin (Redacted)