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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - External Tank 118 (ET-118) is lifted from its cell in the Vehicle Assembly Building in order to place it on a transporter.  The tank will be transferred to NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans.  The tank is being installed with an improved bipod fitting, which connects the external fuel tank to the Shuttle during launch. The new design, a significant milestone in the effort to return the Shuttle to safe flight, replaces the foam that was used to prevent ice buildup on the tank’s bipod fittings with four rod-shaped heaters.  The heaters are being retrofitted on the 11 existing tanks and incorporated into the manufacture of all new tanks. KSC-04pd2128

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - External Tank 118 (ET-118) is lifted from its cell in the Vehicle Assembly Building in order to place it on a transporter. The tank will be transferred to NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans. The tank is being installed with an improved bipod fitting, which connects the external fuel tank to the Shuttle during launch. The new design, a significant milestone in the effort to return the Shuttle to safe flight, replaces the foam that was used to prevent ice buildup on the tank’s bipod fittings with four rod-shaped heaters. The heaters are being retrofitted on the 11 existing tanks and incorporated into the manufacture of all new tanks. KSC-04pd2128

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - External Tank 118 (ET-118) is lifted from its cell in the Vehicle Assembly Building in order to place it on a transporter. The tank will be transferred to NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans. The tank is being installed with an improved bipod fitting, which connects the external fuel tank to the Shuttle during launch. The new design, a significant milestone in the effort to return the Shuttle to safe flight, replaces the foam that was used to prevent ice buildup on the tank’s bipod fittings with four rod-shaped heaters. The heaters are being retrofitted on the 11 existing tanks and incorporated into the manufacture of all new tanks.

The Space Shuttle program was the United States government's manned launch vehicle program from 1981 to 2011, administered by NASA and officially beginning in 1972. The Space Shuttle system—composed of an orbiter launched with two reusable solid rocket boosters and a disposable external fuel tank— carried up to eight astronauts and up to 50,000 lb (23,000 kg) of payload into low Earth orbit (LEO). When its mission was complete, the orbiter would re-enter the Earth's atmosphere and lands as a glider. Although the concept had been explored since the late 1960s, the program formally commenced in 1972 and was the focus of NASA's manned operations after the final Apollo and Skylab flights in the mid-1970s. It started with the launch of the first shuttle Columbia on April 12, 1981, on STS-1. and finished with its last mission, STS-135 flown by Atlantis, in July 2011.

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14/10/2004
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Kennedy Space Center, FL
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NASA
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