Monday, October 19, 2009

New Free Mission Pack 4.10 adds STS-128 and cool features

Exciting Simulations has released today a new free Mission Pack for the Space Shuttle Mission 2007 simulator, which among other goodies such as a new EVA-assist help mode for novice Virtual Astronauts, also contains the STS-128 - the most recently-completed NASA Space Shuttle Mission.

Carried out by Discovery between August 28, and September 11, 2009, STS-128 brought with it Leonardo - the Italian-built Multi Purpose Logistics Module – carrying about 7 tons of supplies and equipment, among them life-support and science racks.

STS-128 was Discovery's 37th mission to space and the 30th mission of a Space Shuttle dedicated to the assembly and maintenance of the International Space Station.

During STS-128, the crew performed three Space Walks replacing materials processing experiment outside ESA's Columbus module, returned an empty Ammonia tank assembly, and brought a fresh ISS crew member –Flight Engineer Astronaut Nicole Stott – replacing Expedition 20 Flight Engineer Astronaut Timothy (Tim) Kopra, who has been with the ISS six-person crew since mid-July 2009.

Astronaut Nicole Stott is scheduled to stay with the ISS through Expedition 21, until the planned STS-129 Space Shuttle mission returns her home on October 2009.
The new Mission Pack also introduces a new EVA assist help feature which, at a press of a switch, reveals the EVA activity/trigger points and helps novices move ahead with the missions. Another first is that now, the ISS solar panels are rotated so that they are closer to their correct position during the historical dockings.