ESA's ATV-3 Departure Delayed by ISS Display Panel Issue


Preparations to undock the European Space Agency's third Automated Transfer Vehicle from the International Space Station were abruptly cancelled late Tuesday, when a problem surfaced with a laptop computer command panel display in the Russian segment of the orbiting science laboratory.

The departure had been scheduled for 6:35 p.m., EDT.

Williams confirmed as much in an exchange with NASA's MCC.

Word of the cancellation was relayed by NASA's Mission Control Center two minutes prior to the scheduled undocking. Russia's control center and ESA's ATV Control Center outside Toulouse, France,  were overseeing the operation.

The ATV-3, the Eduardo Amaldi, docked with the station's aft segment on March 28, five days after it lifted off from the European launch center in Kourou, French Guiana. The freighter delivered seven tons of supplies, including research gear.

"The next attempt is TBD (To Be Determined)," NASA's MCC informed U. S. astronaut Sunita Williams, commander of the station's three-person crew. "A meeting is scheduled tomorrow to discuss what went wrong."

Aboard the station, cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko could be overheard discussing a possible drop out in communication between the  ATV-3 and the Russian segment laptop display.

Williams confirmed as much in an exchange with NASA's MCC.

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