NASA welcomed the arrival of the Columbus laboratory in Florida during a ceremony in the Space Station Processing Facility (SSPF) at Kennedy Space Center. Participating in the welcoming ceremony are, from left, William Gerstenmaier, NASA associate administrator for Space Operations; Alan Thirkettle, ESA's International Space Station Programme Manager; Jim Kennedy, director, Kennedy Space Center; and Russell Romanella, director, International Space Station and Payloads Processing. (2 June 2006)
The Columbus laboratory is ESA's biggest contribution to the International Space Station. Delivered to ESA by EADS SPACE Transportation on 2 May 2006, this laboratory will provide internal payload accommodation for various scientific experiments. The Columbus laboratory will be flown on a Space Shuttle to the ISS in the second half of 2007.