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N° 5–2008: Follow the launch of ESA’s Columbus space laboratory live at ESA and DLR

22 January 2008

With NASA’s recent confirmation of the launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis on Thursday 7 February, ESA astronauts Hans Schlegel, of Germany, and Leopold Eyharts, of France, are set to deliver ESA’s Columbus laboratory to the International Space Station.

Atlantis is now scheduled to lift off from launch pad 39-A at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center near Cape Canaveral, Florida at 14:45 Eastern Standard Time (EST) / 20:45 Central European Time (CET).

Docking with the ISS is scheduled for Saturday 9 February at 12:23 EST (18:23 CET). Landing is currently slated to take place at KSC on Monday 18 February at 09:57 EST (15:57 CET).

ESA’s Columbus laboratory is the most important European mission to the ISS to date and the cornerstone of Europe’s contribution to this international endeavour. Once Columbus has been launched, attached to the Space Station and verified, ESA will become an active partner in the operations and utilisation of mankind’s only permanent outpost in space.

Columbus will be transported into Earth orbit in the Shuttle’s cargo bay, pre-equipped with five internal racks. Two of its external experiment facilities will be stowed separately in the Shuttle’s cargo bay and attached to the outside of the laboratory module structure in orbit.

German ESA astronaut Hans Schlegel will play a key role in two of the three spacewalks or EVAs (Extra-Vehicular Activity) scheduled for the mission. During the mission’s first EVA, Schlegel will help to install and power up the laboratory.

During his extended stay on the ISS, French ESA astronaut Leopold Eyharts will play a key part in the installation, activation and in-orbit commissioning of Columbus and its experimental facilities.

Once in orbit, Columbus will be monitored from ESA’s Columbus Control Centre located at DLR’s German Space Operations Centre in Oberpfaffenhofen, near Munich.

For the launch of this milestone mission, ESA and the German Space Agency, DLR, are organising coverage of the launch at various centres. ESA experts as well as industry representatives will be on hand for interviews.

The launch and the whole mission can also be followed on the web at: www.esa.int/ columbus. Media representatives wishing to follow the event at one of the locations listed below are requested to fill in the attached registration form (see accreditation form linked on the right) and fax it back to the place of their choice.

For further information, please contact:

ESA Media Relations Office,

Communication Department

Tel: +33(0)1 53 69 7299

Fax: +33(0)1.53.69.7690

Launch of the Columbus mission – STS-122

To be faxed back to the location of your choice.

First name:___________________ Last name:___________________

Media: ____________________________________________________

Address: __________________________________________________

Tel:___________________________ Fax: ______________________

Mobile:_______________________ Email: ___________________

I will be attending the STS-122 launch on Thursday 7 February at the following site:

[ ] Germany - Main Launch Event

Location: ESA Columbus Control Centre at DLR/GSOC Oberpfaffenhofen

Address: Münchner Straße 20, 82234-Wessling, Germany

Opening hours: 19:30 - 21:30

Contact: Andreas Schütz, Tel: +49 30 67055 130, Fax: +49 30 67055 120

[ ] Germany

Location: ESA/ESOC

Address: Robert-Bosch Strasse 5, 64289 Darmstadt, Germany

Opening hours: 20:15 – 21:00

Contact: Nicola Gebers, Tel: +49 6151 902 266, Fax: +49 6151 902 961

[ ] Germany

Location: ESA/EAC

Address: Linder Höhe- D 51147 Cologne

Opening hours: 19:30 - 21:30

Contact: Maren Stock, Tel: +49 22 03 6001 111, Fax: +49 22 03 6001 112

[ ] France

Location: ESA HQ

Address: 8/10, rue Mario Nikis, Paris 15, France

Opening hours: 19:30 - 21:30

Contact: Bernhard Von Weyhe, Tel: +33 (0)1 5369 7158, Fax: +33 (0)1 53 69 76 90

[ ] The Netherland

Location: ESA/ESTEC, Erasmus Centre

Address: Keplerlaan 1, Noordwijk, The Netherlands

Opening hours: 19.30 - 22.00

Contact: Michel van Baal, Tel: +31 71 565 3006, Fax: +31 71 565 5728

[ ] Italy

Location: ESA/ESRIN

Address: Via Galileo Galilei, Frascati (Rome), Italy

Opening hours: 19:30 - 21:30

Contact: Dieter Isakeit, Tel: +39 06 941 80 950, Fax: +39 06 941 80 952

[ ] Spain

Location: ESA/ESAC

Address: Camino bajo del Castillo, s/n Urbanización Villafranca del Castillo

Villanueva de la Cañada, Madrid

Opening hours: 19:30 - 21:30 Contact: Monica Oerke, Tel: + 34 91 813 13 27 / 84 / 00, Fax: +34 91 813 11 39

For further information:

ESA - Media Relations Service
Tel: +33.(0)1.5369.7299
Fax: +33.(0)1.5369.7690



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