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Thu, Jun 24, 2010

Discovery Engines Removed Due To Turbopump Problem

Engineers Say It Should Not Create A Delay For STS-133

Space shuttle Discovery will have its three main engines removed after a low-pressure oxidizer turbopump on engine 1 had an issue during a torque check. All three engines have to be removed to allow access to remove the center engine. The pump will be sent to Canoga Park, CA, for repair.

Engineers considered several alternatives, including whether to wait for the engine and its new turbopump or to install another engine in Discovery that was slated for use on Endeavour. The engine work is not a hindrance to processing and is not expected to prompt a delay for the launch of the STS-133 mission. Removal of the three main engines is planned for Thursday, and it was determined that the turbopump should be replaced and the engines will be reinstalled.

Meanwhile, technicians completed Discovery's payload premate test Wednesday. The drag chute door installation and checkout was completed Tuesday night.  The astronauts continue their training at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston for the STS-133 mission, with the crew members are working on robotics tasks they will use during the flight to the International Space Station. They are also undergoing refresher training on International Space Station systems.



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