September 18th, 2011

We welcome to Italy the Astronauts that four months ago delivered AMS-02 to the ISS!
In the framework of a European Post Flight Tour of the STS134 and Expedition 26/27 mission, organized by ESA , ASI and INFN, Commander Mark Kelly, Pilot Gregory Johnson, and Missions specialists Michael Finck, Greg Chamitoff, Andrew Feustel and Roberto Vittori (STS-134) and Commander Scott Kelly and Missions specialists Paolo Nespoli and Catherine Coleman (Exp. 26/27) will visit, among other official venues, INFN Laboratories and University Physics Departments that contributed to  the construction and operation of the AMS experiment.

The Italian segment of the tour will start  on September 19th in Rome with a meeting with the Pope in Castelgandolfo, followed by a press conference at the Italian Space Agency headquarters. The following day both crews will visit INFN Gran Sasso Underground National Laboratory while on September 21st, the crews will visit Pisa.
The STS134 astronauts will continue the tour visiting INFN Laboratories in Perugia and Terni on the 22nd.  On the morning of  September 23rd, both crews will meet students and professors at the Physics Department of the Sapienza University in Rome: during the afternoon the Expedition 26/27 crew will meet the President of Italy.
The last day is scheduled in Bologna on September 24th, including a mandatory visit to Ferrari’s factories in Maranello.
The tour will be a unique opportunity to meet the astronauts and to talk about AMS-02 with the people that took part in this exciting mission now regularly collecting cosmic ray  data on the ISS.