CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – Space shuttle Endeavour has undocked from the international space station.
The shuttle left the orbiting complex Tuesday afternoon, ending 11 days of linked flight. The shuttle's departure broke up what had been the biggest orbiting crowd ever — 13 people altogether in space.
Endeavour and its seven astronauts hope to land in Florida on Friday. Before then, they will inspect their shuttle to make sure the thermal shielding was not pierced by micrometeorites or space junk.
During their shared mission, the two crews improved and expanded the space station. They installed a porch for experiments on Japan's science lab and plugged in fresh batteries. They also shared some unexpected inconveniences, most notably a flooded toilet.