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Michelin Tires: Space Shuttle Discovery Returns Safely

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: 17 July, 2006  (Application Story)
CAPE CANAVERAL, FLA. - (July 17, 2006) – NASA's space shuttle Discovery and its crew returned home safely as its Michelin® tires touched down at 9:14 a.m., at Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Monday, July 17.

One of space shuttle Discovery's main missions on this flight was to deliver Thomas Reiter, a European Space Agency astronaut from Germany, to the international space station. Reiter joined two astronauts, an American and Russian, already living on the station and is the first non-Russian, non-U.S. long-duration crewmember on station.

'The four Michelin main Landing gear tires and two nose Landing gear tires performed as expected today, bringing the space shuttle Discovery back home safely,' said Michelin Aircraft Tire Engineer Dick Scholtz, who was present for the landing. 'We're proud to be a part of NASA's space program and look forward to its next mission.'

Michelin is the sole tire supplier for the space shuttle program. Michelin Aircraft Tire Company, LLC, began equipping the space shuttle with Michelin® Air™ tires in 1995.

Michelin Space Shuttle Tires Facts and Figures:

• Number of tires on the space shuttle - Four main Landing gear tires (44.5x16.0-21, 34 ply, 263 mph) - Two nose Landing gear tires (32x8.8, 20 ply, 250 mph)

• Michelin shuttle tires go from in excess of -40 degrees Fahrenheit in space to +130 degrees Fahrenheit on landing in a matter of minutes.

• The main Landing gear shuttle tires are only used one time and the nose Landing gear tires are typically used for two landings.

• Space shuttle tires are manufactured exclusively in Norwood, N.C.
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