10:30 am EDT May 6, 2011: Important STS-134 Launch Update – NET May 16

NCESSE was informed by NanoRacks and ITA this morning that NASA has revised the launch of STS-134 to No Earlier Than (NET) May 16, which is now a more than 2 week delay relative to the original April 29 launch date. The timeline for payload prep and handover to NASA must now drive against a May 16 launch.

Here is the NEW revised schedule (defined in concert with both NanoRacks and ITA):

New experiment samples must arrive no later than Friday morning, May 13 (FedEx arrival by 10:30-11:00 am is fine)

Reload of experiment samples into the mini-lab will begin Friday evening, May 13

Mini-lab reloading will be complete by midnight Saturday, May 14

payload is turned over to NASA (at likely 5:00 am) Sunday, May 15

launch on Monday, May 16

Recommendation to flight experiment teams sending perishable samples: for samples to arrive Friday morning, May 13, you would likely consider a Thursday (May 12) drop-off of samples at your local FedEx site. That is 6 days from now. In the intervening time, NASA may again delay the launch, so we now have a few days to wait and see if the launch plan changes yet again.


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The Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP) is a program of the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education (NCESSE) in the U.S., and the Arthur C. Clarke Institute for Space Education internationally. It is enabled through a strategic partnership with DreamUp PBC and NanoRacks LLC, which are working with NASA under a Space Act Agreement as part of the utilization of the International Space Station as a National Laboratory. SSEP is the first pre-college STEM education program that is both a U.S. national initiative and implemented as an on-orbit commercial space venture.