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Monday, 13 August, 2001, 08:56 GMT 09:56 UK
Discovery arrives at ISS
ISS Commander Yuri Usachev reaches to shake hands with Discovery Commander Scott Horowitz
Care to dance? The Blue Danube waltz was in the air
The space shuttle Discovery has arrived at the International Space Station, bringing three new residents and scientific equipment and supplies.

Cosmonaut Vladimir Dezhuroz, right, assists astronaut Frank Culbertson
Astronauts conduct an experiment on the effects of zero gravity on the body
Discovery, flown by Commander Scott Horowitz, met the space station over the Indian Ocean, some 385km (240 miles) above north-western Australia.

But there was a hiccup in the docking as the docking ring that draws them together was misaligned because of a stuck shock absorber.

The shuttle astronauts quickly rectified the problem, and two hours later, at 1842 GMT, the two stations successfully came together. The connecting hatches were opened and the two crews embraced each other.

Musical welcome

"You ready for visitors?" asked Commander Horowitz, holding out his hand to space station commander Yuri Usachev, who will leave with Discovery on its return journey.

Inside the space station, the waiting crew floated to Strauss' Blue Danube waltz - a reference to the space station rendezvous scene in Stanley Kubrick's film, "2001: A Space Odyssey".

Discovery space shuttle
Discovery heads for docking with the ISS
The launch of the shuttle from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida had been postponed from Thursday to Friday, following bad weather.

As well as Expedition Three, the space station's third crew, the shuttle is dropping off a spare command-and-control computer, food, clothes, towels, tools, science experiments, photo equipment and a sleeping bunk.

The new ISS crew is made up of one American, Commander Frank Culbertson, and two Russians, Vladimir Dezhurov and Mikhail Tyurin.

They are accompanied by shuttle Commander Horowitz, pilot Rick Sturckow and two more astronauts, Daniel Barry and Patrick Forrester.


The Discovery's mission will last 11 days, after which the four-man shuttle crew will return to Earth with Expedition Two Commander Yuri Usachev and his two flight engineers, Susan Helms and Jim Voss.

Barry and Forrester will conduct two spacewalks during the mission to attach cables and other gear to the space station.

The transfer of equipment from the Italian-built logistical module Leonardo, which is carried inside the shuttle, is due to begin on Tuesday.

The new ISS crew, which will be relieved by Expedition Four in early December, will oversee the arrival of a Russian docking compartment and welcome the arrival of two Progress cargo ships.

The BBC's Tanya Sakzewski
"The current crew will leave on the 22nd of August"
See also:

24 Jul 01 | Sci/Tech
Shuttle completes vital ISS mission
22 Apr 01 | Sci/Tech
Shuttle astronauts armed and ready
14 Mar 01 | Sci/Tech
Space station crews change over
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