Columbus Media Day at Kennedy Space Centre

The European Columbus module is prepared in the Space Station Processing Facility at KSC
14 September 2007

See ESA’s Columbus laboratory being readied for launch to the International Space Station and meet ESA experts at the Kennedy Space Centre, Florida on 10 October.

Two major European-built modules will be delivered and attached to the International Space Station (ISS) with the next two launches of the Space Shuttle. Three ESA astronauts will take part in these two complex Shuttle missions. Astronaut Paolo Nespoli, from Italy, will fly on board Space Shuttle Discovery on 23 October while Hans Schlegel from Germany and Léopold Eyharts from France will fly on board Space Shuttle Atlantis on 6 December. With these missions, ESA will own part of the only permanent human outpost in space, heralding a new era as Europe will get permanent access to space research in weightlessness.

STS-122 crew portrait
STS-122 crew portrait

The first of the Shuttle missions, STS-120, will lift Node-2 into orbit. The Italian-built Node-2 is an extension and connecting port for the ISS. ESA astronaut Paolo Nespoli will have a major role in installing that element. The mission, dubbed Esperia from the Ancient Greek name for the Italian peninsula, foresees five spacewalks.

Astronauts Hans Schlegel and Léopold Eyharts will fly to the ISS as part of the STS-122 crew and they will deliver the Columbus Laboratory to the ISS. Columbus will be attached to the ISS during a space walk in which ESA astronaut Hans Schlegel will take part.

The Columbus laboratory is launched pre-equipped with multi-disciplinary science facilities. After 12 days in space, Hans Schlegel will return to Earth with the Shuttle, while Leopold Eyharts will remain on the ISS for two more months to oversee the in-orbit commissioning of Columbus and its experimental facilities.

Columbus arrives at ISS
Artist's impression of Columbus arrival at Station

On Wednesday 10 October, ESA project managers, engineers and other experts will be available at KSC for a last visit to the Columbus laboratory and for interviews. A visit of NASA’s Shuttle launch facilities will give media representatives a complete overview of the preparation process that will lead to the launch of Columbus in early December.

The attached programme provides the timeline of this event. To request badging for access to NASA KSC media representatives must fill in accreditation details electronically at before Friday 21 September at the latest. Interested journalists are also kindly requested to notify us by returning the attached ESA accreditation form to (or Fax. + 33 1 5369 7690), also by Friday 21 September.

For further information:

Franco Bonacina
ESA Spokesman and Head of Media Relation Office
Brigitte Kolmsee
Media Relations Office
Tel: +33(0)
Fax: +33(0)

Programme - Columbus Media Day at KSC

Wednesday 10 October

07:30 - Gathering at KSC Press badging station, State Road 405. (Badging office opens at 06:00 am. Allow about one hour for badging).

09:00 - Transfer to press centre with NASA bus.

09:30-10:30 - Press briefing on Columbus and Europe’s role in the ISS (in press centre’s Auditorium).

10:30 - Transfer to Space Station Processing Facility (ISS integration facilities).

10:45-12:45 - Visit of Columbus laboratory and other ISS-related hardware in SSPF. Interview opportunities and stand-ups with ESA experts.

12:45-13:30 - Lunch at KSC Cafeteria near SSPF.

13:30-16:00 - Visit of KSC facilities (Orbiter Processing Facility, Vehicle Assembly Building, Shuttle launch pad…). 16:00 Briefing on KSC’s Public Affairs services fro media (in Auditorium) .

17:00 - End of event.


  • A Media Escort will accompany touring media at all times within KSC. The group must remain with their media escort at all times and not wander off.
  • Touching/moving of any KSC equipment/hardware is prohibited.
  • Long pants and flat, closed-toe shoes are required attire for any operational area. Sleeveless shirts and tank tops are not allowed. (Tennis shoes are allowed.)
  • Flash photography is not allowed in the operational areas unless permission is specifically granted.
  • Cameras and all attached parts shall be tethered to the photographer when in flight hardware areas.
  • Cellular phones, answer back pagers, and two-way radios are not allowed in the OPF - even if turned off.
  • Matches, lighters, or other flame producing devices are not allowed in any operational area.
  • Other restrictions may apply at operational areas depending on hazardous operations being conducted.

ESA Accreditation Form

Columbus Media Day , 10 October at KSC/Florida

First Name: ___________________ Last Name: _________________

Media: _______________________________________________

Work Address: ______________________________________________________


Phone: _____________________ Fax: _________________________

Cell Phone: ____________________________________________

e-mail: _________________________________________________

Personal address: _________________________________________________________


Nationality: ____________________________

Date of Birth: ___________________________

Place of Birth: ___________________________

Passport number: ________________________

Delivered by: ______________________ Place: _________________

Delivery date: __________________________

Expiry date: ____________________________

( ) I wish to take part in the Columbus Media Day at KSC

Please return this form by Friday 21 September to:
Brigitte Kolmsee, ESA , Media Relations Office,
Communication Department
Phone + 33 1 5369 7299
Fax: + 33 1 5369 7690


You must also accredit with NASA via by 21 September.

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