Discovery Undocks to Begin Trip Back to Earth

JOHNSON SPACE CENTER, Houston (AP) -- Discovery has begun its two-day journey home from the international space station.

The space shuttle undocked after a stay of a week-and-a-half that included delivery of a new pressurized compartment and a risky spacewalk to fix a ripped solar wing. That spacewalk was a success and will allow NASA to push forward with plans to launch the shuttle Atlantis in December. It will carry a new European lab to the space station.

Astronaut Clayton Anderson is now aboard the shuttle. He's returning from five months in orbit and has been replaced on the station by Daniel Tani, who is starting a two-month mission.

Discovery is scheduled to return to Earth Wednesday.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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