CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (July 17) — NASA´s space shuttle Discovery and its crew returned home safely as its Michelin tires touched down at 9:14 a.m. today at Cape Canaveral.
"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 Dick Scholtz, tire engineer with Michelin Aircraft Tire Co. L.L.C., which began equipping the space shuttle with Michelin Air-brand tires in 1995 and is the sole tire supplier for the space shuttle program.
"We´re proud to be a part of NASA´s space program and look forward to its next mission."
One of 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 to be assigned there.
The four main landing gear tires on the shuttle are 34-ply, size 44.5x16.0-21, rated at 263 mph; the two nose landing gear tires are 20-ply, size 32x8.8, rated at 250 mph. Space shuttle tires are manufactured exclusively in Norwood, N.C.