Answers Your Questions
| From: John R. Scott, of Upper Darby, Pa. |
To: Wayne Hale, flight director
Question: When Node 2 is added to the forward end of Destiny, where will the shuttle dock?
Answer: Good question, John.
The short answer is that the shuttle will continue to dock to the PMA2 docking port just like it does now. To make this possible, however, will require a bit of work, though, as the Node 2 module will have to be "wedged" between the Destiny Lab and PMA2.
This will be accomplished in three phases. First, Node 2 will be brought up on mission ISS-10A in February 2004. It will be temporarily attached to the port side of Node 1 (Unity). Then the shuttle will undock from PMA2 and return to Earth. During the 10A Stage, the ISS crew will remove PMA2 from Destiny and move it to the front of Node 2 using the space station arm (SSRMS). Then, the ISS crew will move the assembled Node 2/PMA2 to the front of the Destiny Lab. Doing this requires several operations of various attachment mechanisms, several spacewalks and a great deal of coordination. In the end, however, PMA2 will be out in front and ready for the next shuttle to dock on mission ISS-ULF2, about four months after 10A undocks.
Ed Van Cise
Operations Support Officer (OSO)