March 2011
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"And Houston, Discovery. For the final time, wheelstop."

Discovery made her last landing this morning, wrapping up her final mission to the International Space Station. Touchdown occurred right on time,  just before noon EST (1657 UT). Sadly, her next destination - after accruing 365 days in space - will be a museum. NASA reports:

Discovery Lands in Florida to Complete STS-133!

Discovery rolls down the runway after landing Image above: Space shuttle Discovery touches down at the Shuttle Landing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Wednesday, March 9, to end the STS-133 mission. Photo credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls
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At 11:57 a.m. EST, Space shuttle Discovery landed for the final time at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center after 202 orbits around Earth and a journey of 5,304,140 miles on STS-133. Discovery’s main gear touched down at 11:57:17 a.m. followed by the nose gear at 11:57:28 and wheels stop at 11:58:14 a.m. At wheels stop, the mission elapsed time was 12 days, 19 hours, four minutes and 50 seconds. STS-133 was the 39th and final flight for Discovery, which spent 365 days in space, orbited Earth 5,830 times and traveled 148,221,675 miles.

Space Shuttle Mission: STS-133

The crew of STS-133. Image above: The crew of space shuttle Discovery's STS-133 mission, the final flight for NASA's oldest active shuttle. The astronauts are, from left, Mission Specialists Nicole Stott and Michael Barratt, Pilot Eric Boe, Commander Steve Lindsey and Mission Specialists Alvin Drew and Steve Bowen. Image credit: NASA TV
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During space shuttle Discovery's final spaceflight, the STS-133 crew members delivered important spare parts to the International Space Station along with the Express Logistics Carrier-4.

Steve Bowen replaced Tim Kopra as Mission Specialist 2 following a bicycle injury on Jan. 15 that prohibited Kopra from supporting the launch window. Bowen last flew on Atlantis in May 2010 as part of the STS-132 crew. Flying on the STS-133 mission makes Bowen the first astronaut ever to fly on consecutive missions.

Mission Stats

STS-133 Mission Statistics

Wed., March 9, 2011, 11:47 a.m. EST

Landing Site:
Kennedy Space Center, Florida

Mission Elapsed Time
12 days, 19 hours, 3 minutes, 53 seconds

Official Landing Times
Main gear touchdown: 11:57:17 a.m. EST
Nose gear touchdown: 11:57:28 a.m. EST
Wheels stop: 11:58:14 a.m. EST
Total miles: more than 5.3 million

Additional STS-133 Resources
› Countdown highlights
› Launch Week Events
› STS-133 Press Kit (11.4 Mb PDF)
› STS-133 Mission Summary (778 Kb PDF)
› STS-133 Crew
› Discovery facts (351 Kb PDF)
› Discovery's Career in Photos
› Discovery Retrospective
› Tanking Test Details (Dec. 17, 2010)

› Orbiter Status Updates

Live HD coverage at SpaceVidCast. Live video at SFN and Florida Today. Discussion at Nasaspaceflight. Landing blog at NASA. Pics and video at KSC. More clips at Space Multimedia. Check the links at right for play-by-play and NASA TV. Follow us on Twitter!

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