Paris, 07 Apr 2004
The launch of ESA's DELTA mission to the International Space Station (ISS) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan is currently scheduled for 19 April at 05:18 Central European Summer time (03:18 UT - 09:18 local time).
Docking with the ISS is scheduled for 21 April at about 07:00 CEST (05:00 UT - 09:00 Moscow time), with the opening of the hatch at 08:25 CEST. The return to Earth is currently planned on 30 April.
ESA astronaut André Kuipers, a Dutch national, starts this 10-day mission in company with the NASA astronaut Edward Michael Fincke and the Russian Gennady Padalka, the next ISS crew. The main objectives of this flight are to carry out a full programme of scientific experiments, technology demonstrations and educational activities and to relieve the Expedition - 8 crew (the American Michael Foale and the Russian Alexander Kaleri).
Media representatives in Europe can follow the launch and/or docking phases at ESA/HQ in Paris, France, ESA/ESTEC, Noordwijk, (Space Expo), in the Netherlands, ESA/ESRIN, Frascati, in Italy, or ESA/ESOC, Darmstadt, in Germany. At each site ESA specialists will be available for interview.
Those wishing to attend are asked to complete the attached reply form and fax it to the Communications Office at the establishment of their choice.
The ESA TV service will rebroadcast the NASA-TV live coverage of the launch, with English commentary, between 04:30 and 05:30 CEST. Details of the transmission schedule and the various pre-launch video news releases can be found on http://television.esa.int as from 13 April 2004.
On the Delta launch special website at http://www.esa.int/delta you can also find news, press releases, videos, images and more about the mission.
For further information, please contact:
ESA Media Relations Division