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Astronauts transfer cargo carrier to ISS

The crews of the space shuttle Discovery and the International Space Station on Monday transferred a container holding 816 kilograms of cargo to the station.

world Updated: Sep 01, 2009 11:43 IST

The crews of the space shuttle Discovery and the International Space Station on Monday transferred a container holding 816 kilograms of cargo to the station.

In the first day of joint operations at the station, the crews used a robotic arm to take the Leonardo Multi-Purpose Logistics Module out of the shuttle's payload bay and install it outside the station for easy access during spacewalks.

During the first spacewalk set to begin on Tuesday at 2149 GMT, US astronauts John "Danny" Olivas and Nicole Stott will remove a spent 816-kg ammonia tank. The ammonia is used to remove heat from the station. The storage tank is the largest item ever moved by astronauts during a spacewalk. They will also bring in experiments that have been stored outside the station.

Discovery lifted off in a midnight launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida on Friday after days of postponements due to a questionable valve on the shuttle's external fuel tank and poor weather.

The planned 13-day mission is designed to transport new equipment and experiments to the space station. Stott has replaced Timothy Kopra aboard the ISS crew, and three spacewalks are planned for the mission.

Discovery's crew for the mission includes six Americans and Swede Christer Fuglesang, flying for the European Space Agency.

The shuttle also carries a $5-million treadmill named for television comedian Stephen Colbert, who egged on his viewers to vote for him in a NASA naming contest. The treadmill will also be installed on Tuesday.