Infobox Space mission
mission_name = STS-124
insignia = STS-124 patch.svg
shuttle = Discovery
launch_pad = LC-39A
launch = May 31, 2008, 5:02:12 p.m. EDTcite web |url= |title=Mission Information - STS-124 |publisher=NASA]
landing = June 14, 2008 11:16:19 a.m. EDT [ Page 19]
duration = 13 days, 18 hrs, 13 minutes 7 seconds
orbits = 217
apogee =
perigee =
apolune =
perilune =
altitude = 122 nautical miles (225 km)
inclination = 51.6 degrees
period =
distance = 5,735,643 miles (9,230,622.6 km)
crew_photo = Sts124crew.jpg
crew_caption = From left to right: Chamitoff, Fossum, Ham, Kelly, Nyberg, Garan and Hoshide
previous_mission = STS-123
next_mission = STS-126

STS-124 was a Space Shuttle mission, flown by Space Shuttle "Discovery" to the International Space Station. "Discovery" launched on May 31, 2008 at 5:02 p.m. EDT, moved from an earlier scheduled launch date of May 25, 2008.cite web | url = | title = NASA Updates Target Launch Date for Next Space Shuttle Flight | author=NASA|publisher = NASA|year=2008|accessdate = 2008-03-31] , and landed safely at the Kennedy Space Center's Shuttle Landing Facility, at 11:15 am EDT on June 14 2008.

The mission is also referred to as ISS-1J by the ISS program. Completion of the mission leaves eight flights remaining in the Space Shuttle program until its end in 2010, excluding two as-yet-unconfirmed Contingency Logistic Flights.cite web | url = | title = Consolidated Launch Manifest | author=NASA|publisher = NASA|year=2007|accessdate = 2007-08-21]


*Mark E. Kelly (3) - CommanderCite web|url=|title=NASA Assigns Crew for Shuttle Mission to Install Japanese Lab|accessyear=2007|accessmonthday=October 30|publisher=NASA|year=2007|author=NASA]
*Kenneth Ham (1) - Pilot
*Karen L. Nyberg (1) - Mission Specialist 1
*Ronald J. Garan, Jr. (1) - Mission Specialist 2
*Michael E. Fossum (2) - Mission Specialist 3
*Akihiko Hoshide (1) - Mission Specialist 4 - JAXA

Launching ISS Expedition 17 Crew

*Gregory Chamitoff (1) - Flight Engineer

Landing ISS Expedition 17 Crew

*Garrett Reisman (1) - Flight Engineer

Crew notes

* Stephen G. Bowen was originally assigned to STS-124 but was moved to STS-126 to allow this mission to rotate an ISS crew member. Cite web|url=|title=Crew assignments for space shuttle mission STS-126 have been revised following the resignation of an experienced astronaut.|accessyear=2007|accessmonthday=November 22|publisher=iTWire|year=2007|author=Stephen Withers] Bowen was scheduled to perform the EVAs on the flight along with Fossum. Garan took his place for the EVAs.

Commander Kelly discusses the crew

"I’m really fortunate to be given the crew members that I have on this mission. It’s myself and six others. We do swap one of our crew members with the expedition crew member on board. So Greg goes up, Greg stays on station and Garrett comes home. But the crew that was assigned to me -- I’m really fortunate to have some really talented people. Ken Ham, as a pilot, knows the orbiter better than anybody I’ve seen. This is his first flight. My lead EVA crew member is Mike Fossum who did three spacewalks on my previous flight, STS-121. We’ve flown together before. I have all the confidence in the world in his ability to execute these EVAs. Karen Nyberg, my MS1, sits on the flight deck for ascent and entry. She’s also the lead for all the robotic arm operations. She’ll be flying three robotic arms in space, incredibly motivated, well ahead of the game and I expect great things from her. Ron Garan is my flight engineer, a colonel in the Air Force. This is going to be his first time in space as well as is Karen’s and Ken’s and he’s doing three spacewalks. So he's got a lot on his plate. He’s been doing great during training and he’s going to have the opportunity to prove himself during these three spacewalks. I kind of wish it was me getting to go outside. I can’t do that, but we expect great things from Ron as well. And then I have Aki Hoshide, our Japanese crew member, who grew up in New Jersey kind of like me. That’s an interesting thing about our flight -- we have four people from New Jersey on the mission. I look at Aki as the payload commander. He is responsible for that Japanese laboratory and he has taken on that responsibility as completely as I could have hoped for. All through our training he’s been very much focused on the Japanese lab, making sure it’s ready to go, making sure we’re completely trained on the systems and everything we have to do. I’ve given him a lot of responsibility and he’s completely taken it on." [ [ NASA - Preflight Interview: Mark Kelly, Commander ] ]

*Gregory Chamitoff brought the first bagels into space: 3 bags (18 sesame seed bagels) with him. [ [ Montreal-born astronaut brings bagels into space] Sun. Jun. 1 2008 7:29 PM ET ; CTV National News - 1 June 2008 - 11pm TV newscast ] [ The Gazette (Montreal), [ Here's proof: Montreal bagels are out of this world] , "IRWIN BLOCK", Tuesday June 3 2008, Section A, Page A2 ]

Mission parameters

* Mass: 2052.54 tons (4,525,084lb)
* Perigee: convert|177|nmi|km
* Apogee: convert|166|nmi|km
* Inclination: 51.6 degrees
* Period: 91min

Mission payloads

STS-124 delivered the Pressurized Module (PM) of the Japanese Experiment Module (JEM), called "Kibō", to the International Space Station (ISS). "Kibō" was berthed to the "Harmony" module and the pressurized section of the JEM Experiment Logistics Module, brought up by the STS-123 crew, was moved from "Harmony" to the JEM-PM. The Japanese Remote Manipulator System, a robotic arm, was also delivered by STS-124 and attached to "Kibō". The entire "Kibō" laboratory is being brought up over three missions.

Discovery carried with it replacement parts in a mid deck locker for a malfunctioning toilet on the International Space Station. The crew had been using other facilities for waste until the new replacement parts were installed on the Zvezda module of the ISS.

Flying with the STS-124 crew was an action figure of Buzz Lightyear. Ken Ham, pilot of the STS-124 mission, brought with him episodes of ESPN Radio's Mike and Mike in the Morning, and a plastic microphone stand with the ESPN logo on it. Along with those, a yellow jersey from Lance Armstrong's record-setting seven victories at the Tour de France bicycle race, the backup jersey Eli Manning took to the Super Bowl, and the last jersey that American Major League Baseball's Craig Biggio wore in a game had places inside the orbiter's lockers.cite web|url=|title=Buzz Lightyear to Soar with Discovery|publisher=NASA|accessdate=2008-05-29|date=2008-05-29]

With the completion of STS-124, it will be at least two years before the space shuttle delivers another permanent pressurized module.

Mission background

The mission marked:cite web |url= |title=Space Shuttle Discovery Arrives at Launch Pad, Countdown Test Set |publisher=PR Newswire]
* 154th manned US space launch
* 123rd space shuttle flight since STS-1
* 98th post-"Challenger" mission
* 10th post-"Columbia" mission
* 11th flight remaining in the shuttle program
* 26th flight to the ISS
* 35th flight for shuttle "Discovery"
* 3rd shuttle mission in 2008

Mission timeline

On April 26, 2008 "Discovery" was rolled over to the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) from its processing bay in the Orbiter Processing Facility. Once in the VAB it was lifted vertically and mated with its external tank and solid rocket boosters on April 28, 2008. At the end of a week long prep schedule on May 2, 2008 at 11:47 p.m. EDT the stack was rolled out to launch pad 39A on top the Mobile Launch Platform. Carried by the Crawler Transporter, "Discovery" arrived and was secured at LC-39A on May 3, 2008 at 6:06 a.m. EDT. The payload canister containing the JEM was rolled out to the Payload Changeout Room at the pad on April 29, 2008 and was later installed into "Discovery"'s payload bay on May 5, 2008. The STS-124 crew arrived at Kennedy Space Center on May 6, 2008 for the 3-day Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test and returned to Johnson Space Center on May 9, 2008 after completion of the launch dress rehearsal. After many flight readiness review tests, Discovery was given a go for a May 31, 2008 launch. Discovery launched on May 31, 2008 at 21:02 UTC. The following is the expected timeline and is subject to change.

May 31 (Flight day 1, Launch)

The Space Shuttle "Discovery" launched from the Kennedy Space Center at 5:02 p.m. local time. Debris from the fuel tank was minimal. [ [ Discovery blasts off for space station] ]

"While we've all prepared for this event today, the discoveries from Kibo will definitely offer hope for tomorrow," said Discovery's commander Mark Kelly just before launch. "Now stand by for the greatest show on Earth." [cite web|url = |title = - Shuttle Discovery Launches Space Station's Largest Lab |accessdate = 2008-06-14]

=Launch pad da

One of the trenches at launch pad 39A that channels flames away from the shuttle during lift-off was significantly damaged. [cite web|url = |title = |accessdate = 2008-07-10] Repairs to the trench are underway and need to be completed before the STS-125 mission scheduled for 2008-10-08. [cite web|url = | title = NASA Image of the Day | accessdate = 2008-07-10]

June 1 (Flight day 2)

During the first full day in space, Ham and Nyberg completed a limited inspection of the shuttle’s thermal protection system using the end effector camera of the shuttle’s robotic arm. The crew also installed the centerline camera and extended the orbiter’s docking system ring to prepare "Discovery"' for arrival at the space station. [cite web |url= |title=STS-124 MCC Status Report #03 |publisher=NASA]

June 2 (Flight day 3)

Discovery docked with the space station at 2:03 PM EDT. The hatches opened at 3:36 PM. Greg Chamitoff officially joined the Expedition 17 crew, replacing Garrett Reisman. [cite web |url= |title=STS-124 MCC Status Report #05 |publisher=NASA]

June 3 (Flight day 4)

Mike Fossum and Ron Garan completed a six hour, forty-eight minute spacewalk at 7:10 p.m. EDT. During the excursion, the pair retrieved the Orbiter Boom Sensor System, serviced and inspected components of a Solar Alpha Rotary Joint and prepared the JEM-PS component of the Kibō laboratory for installation. Karen Nyberg and Akihiko Hoshide, using the station’s robotic arm, removed the JEM-PS from the shuttle’s payload bay and latched it in place on the "Harmony" node, completing the task at 7:01 p.m. [cite web |url= |title=STS-124 MCC Status Report #07 |publisher=NASA]

June 4 (Flight day 5)

The hatch to the Kibō lab was opened at 5:05 PM EDT. The crew also repaired the malfunctioning ISS toilet. [ [ STS-124 MCC Status report] ]

June 5 (Flight day 6)

Fossum and Garan completed the second STS-124 spacewalk. The 7-hour, 11-minute excursion ended at 6:15 p.m. EDT Thursday. [ [ STS-124 MCC status Report] ] Prior to heading outside spacewalker Garan stated "Mike and I are getting ready to go out the door for our second spacewalk today. It's going to be a wonderful day." [cite web|url = |title = - Astronauts to Add Camera Eyes to New Station Lab |accessdate = 2008-06-14]

June 6 (Flight day 7)

The crew moved the Kibo Logistics Module from Harmony to the Pressurized Module. [ [ STS-124 MCC status Report] ]

June 7 (Flight day 8)

Hoshide and Nyberg moved two of the six joints on the Japanese Kibō lab's robotic arm for the first time, maneuvering them very slightly with a series of commands. [ [ Shuttle astronauts prepare robot arm for 1st use] ] With the mission at its midpoint astronaut Karen Nyberg commented that "the week has gone way too fast." [cite web|url = |title = - Shuttle Crew Hits Mission Midpoint with Robot Arm Test |accessdate = 2008-06-14]

June 8 (Flight day 9)

Fossum and Garan conducted the third and final spacewalk, replacing an empty nitrogen tank and collecting a sample of debris from the solar array. [ [ Astronauts breeze through their 3rd spacewalk] ]

June 9 (Flight day 10)

Kibō's robot arm was extended to its full 33 feet, with all six joints tested. The astronauts also opened the hatch to the Kibō's storage unit. [ [ Astronauts wrap up space station work] ]

June 10 (Flight day 11)

The shuttle closed the hatch connecting it to the space station at 3:49 PM EDT [ [ Shuttle Crew Prepares to Leave Space Station] ]

"It's amazing what's going on up here," said Chamitoff. "This is just the beginning. Overall, the mission's been a great success," said Kelly from space. "I certainly have a great crew and they're well trained, but there's also a little luck involved." [cite web|url = |title = - Space Shuttle Flight a 'Great Success,' Astronauts Say |accessdate = 2008-06-14]

June 11 (Flight day 12)

Discovery undocked from the International Space Station's Harmony Module, at 07:42 EDT. Discovery then conducted a fly-by of the ISS, so pictures could be taken. Saying goodbye to the ISS and its crew, commander Kelly said "We wish them the best with their expedition and we hope we left them a better, more capable space station than when we arrived. Sayonara." [cite web|url = |title = - Shuttle Discovery Undocks From Space Station |accessdate = 2008-06-14]

Afterwards the crew of Discovery conducted the late inspection of the shuttle's Thermal Protection System that was unable to be performed as usual on Flight Day 2, due to the size of the Kibo Pressurized Module.cite web|url = |title = NASA - Space Shuttle |accessdate = 2008-06-14]

June 12 (Flight day 13)

Flight day 13 was a rare off-duty day. The only major projects were stowage of the Orbiter Boom Sensor System (OBSS) and an orbit adjustment burn.

During the day, pilot Kenneth Ham conducted an interview with Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic of ESPN, to be aired on their radio show, "Mike and Mike in the Morning", the following morning on ESPN Radio and ESPN2.

June 13 (Flight day 14)

The crew conducted routine testing of the steering jets and an examination of the flight control system. During these tests, a shiny object was noticed trailing the shuttle. This was identified as a thermal clip from the shuttle's brake system, and should pose no danger during landing. [ [ NASA identifies shiny object trailing shuttle] ]

June 14 (Flight day 15, Landing)

The crew worked through their lengthy list of deorbit preparations, which continued for most of the day. They closed the payload bay doors at 7:30 EDT, which took place without incident. All of Discovery's systems were nominal, and with the weather looking very good at KSC the deorbit burn took place on schedule at 10:10 EDT for landing on runway 15 at 11:15 EDT.

At 8:00 am EDT, the decision was made to use runway 15 rather than 33. This decision was made based on the sun glare that would be present on the Commander's window as he lined up Discovery with the runway.

At 10:10 EDT, Discovery fired its orbital maneuvering system engines to slow it down by 197 mph, resulting in a successful reentry into the Earth's atmosphere.

Discovery landed at 11:15 am EDT, after a perfect re-entry, on runway 15 of the Shuttle Landing Facility at the Kennedy Space Center.

Mission Stats

*Landed: Sat., June 14, 2008, 11:15 a.m. EDT
*Landing Site: Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
*Mission Elapsed Time:
**13 days, 18 hours, 13 minutes, 7 secs
*Official Landing Times
**Main gear touchdown: 11:15:19 a.m. EDT
**Nose gear touchdown: 11:15:30 a.m. EDT
**Wheels stop: 11:16:19 a.m. EDT
*Total miles: 5.7 million

Extra-vehicular activity

Three extra-vehicular activity (EVA) spacewalks were scheduled and completed during STS-124.cite web|url=|title=NASA Mission Summary, STS-124|publisher=NASA|accessdate=2008-04-09|date=2008-04-09] The total time of all spacewalks completed during the mission was 20 hours and 32 minutes.

Wake-up calls

A tradition for NASA human spaceflights since the days of Gemini, is that mission crews are played a special musical track at the start of each day in space. Each track is specially chosen, often by their family, and usually has a special meaning to an individual member of the crew, or is applicable to their daily activities. [cite news | first=Colin | last=Fries | coauthors= | title=Chronology of Wakeup Calls | date=2007-06-25 | publisher=NASA | url = | work = | pages = | accessdate = 2007-08-13] Cite web|url=|title=STS-124 Wakeup Calls|accessyear=2008|accessmonthday=March 11|publisher=NASA|year=2008|author=NASA]

* Day 1: "Infinite Frontier" performed by The Phenomenauts, played for Entire Crew
* Day 2: "Your Wildest Dreams" performed by The Moody Blues, played for Pilot Kenneth Ham. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 3: "Away From Home" performed by José Molina Serrano, played for mission specialist Gregory Chamitoff. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 4: "Hold me with the Robot Arm" performed by Yusuke Hanawa, played for mission specialist Akihiko Hoshide. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 5: "Have You Ever" performed by Brandi Carlile was played for Mission Specialist Karen Nyberg. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 6: "Fly Away" by Lenny Kravitz was played for Mission Specialist Ron Garan. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 7: "Bright As Yellow" by The Innocence Mission was played for Mission Specialist Karen Nyberg. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 8: "Taking Off" by Godaigo was played for Mission Specialist Akihiko Hoshide. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 9: "The Mickey Mouse March" theme from The Mickey Mouse Club was played for the entire STS-124 crew. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 10: "The Spirit of Aggieland" by Fightin' Texas Aggie Band was played for Mission Specialist Mike Fossum. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 11: "All Because of You" by U2 was played for Mission Specialist Ron Garan. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 12: "Centerfield" by John Fogerty was played for Pilot Ken Ham. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 13: "Crystal Frontier" by Calexico was played for Commander Mark Kelly. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]
* Day 14: "Baby, Won't You Please Come Home" by Louis Prima and Keely Smith was played for Mission Specialist Garrett Reisman. [ WAV] [ MP3] [ TRANSCRIPT]

Contingency mission

STS-326 is the designation given to the Contingency Shuttle Crew Support mission which would have been launched in the event that "Discovery" becomes disabled during STS-124.cite news | first=Chris | last=Bergin | coauthors= | title=NASA sets new launch date targets through to STS-124 | date=2007-04-15 | publisher=NASASpaceflight | url = | work = | pages = | accessdate = 2007-08-21 | language = ] It would have been a modified version of the STS-126 mission of "Endeavour", which would have involved the launch date being brought forward. The crew for this mission would have been a four-person subset of the full STS-126 crew, namely:
* Christopher Ferguson - Commander
* Eric A. Boe - Pilot
* Stephen G. Bowen - Mission Specialist, extravehicular 2
* Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper - Mission Specialist, extravehicular 1


Space Shuttle "Discovery" launches from launch pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center as part of the STS-124 mission


External links

* [ Official NASA Space Shuttle Page, includes images and data, constantly updated as STS-124 progresses]
* [ NASA's official STS-124 Launch Blog]
* [ NASA-TV: NASA's Television Station Which Will Broadcast the Mission of STS-124 from Mission Control in Houston and Space]
* [ Up to the minute status updates for STS-124 mission updates page on]
* [ STS-124 Official Flight Kit manifest page on]

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