Crew Begins Sleep Shifting as Launch Preps Move Ahead

Seven astronauts who will fly to the International Space Station aboard space shuttle Discovery began subtle changes in their daily routine to adjust their body clocks for the mission’s schedule. The process is called sleep-shifting and it basically gets the crew members accustomed to being awake when they wouldn’t normally be. Discovery is targeted to launch on Aug. 25 at 1:36 a.m.

Workers are also performing their own tasks at NASA Kennedy Space Center’s Launch Pad 39A to ready Discovery for its flight. While those careful preparations continue, teams will analyze foam loss from the external tanks on the STS-125 and STS-127 missions. Also, with the program-level Flight Readiness Review completed, officials are getting ready for the higher-level FRR Aug. 18.