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Shuttle Discovery Prepares to Leave Space Station


Astronauts from the International Space Station and the U.S. space shuttle Discovery bid each other farewell Sunday just before the hatch between the two craft was closed in preparation for Discovery's return to Earth.

The two spacecraft are scheduled to separate early Monday morning.

Returning to Earth aboard Discovery is astronaut Clayton Anderson who has been aboard the space station since June. In his place Discovery will leave Daniel Tani who launched with the rest of the shuttle crew 12 days ago.

In a series of spacewalks, Discovery's crew delivered and attached the Harmony module to the space station and performed a risky and complicated repair to a torn solar array.

Discovery is expected to land Wednesday at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.