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26 Mar, 2009 00:18

Discovery undocked from the ISS

Shuttle Discovery has undocked from the International Space Station at the end of its 13 day mission. The shuttle is returning home with seven astronauts after a landmark eight days of construction.

The astronaut's work has allowed the ISS to unfold its final set of solar wings which boosts the orbiting laboratory up to full power.

This is the culmination of more than 10 years of work since construction first began. Now the ISS is larger than a football field.

After Discovery fully unlatches, the shuttle will fly around the ISS to give astronauts a chance to take pictures of the newly enhanced structure.

Shuttle pilot Dominic “Tony” Antonelli is at the helm to guide Discovery back to Earth, with its landing scheduled for Saturday.

Discovery is also bringing home one of the ISS crew members, Sandra Magnus, who has spent four and a half months on board the station.

Magnus is being replaced by Japan's first long-term resident of the station, who is scheduled to stay for three months.

The new station crew is due to arrive on Saturday aboard the Russian space ship Soyz.