terça-feira, fevereiro 12, 2008

Space Shuttle

In this image from NASA Television the Columbus module is seen at the end of the robotic arm after being taken out of the payload bay of the space shuttle Atlantis, Monday, Feb. 11, 2008.(AP

Astronauts set up new space station lab
By LIZ AUSTIN PETERSON, Associated Press Writer

HOUSTON - With the Columbus lab now secured to the international space station, the 10 orbiting astronauts rolled up their sleeves on Tuesday for their next big job: getting the lab running.

Crew members spent Tuesday morning hooking up power, fluid and data lines linking the new module to the station before French astronaut Leopold Eyharts briefly floated inside for the first time. Checking around with his headlamp, he said the lab appeared to be in good shape.
"This is a great moment," he said.

A formal ceremony marking the lab's grand opening was set for Tuesday afternoon.
American spacewalkers Rex Walheim and Stanley Love helped install Europe's shiny new $2 billion lab on Monday. The astronauts shouted and cheered when the 23-foot, 14-ton lab finally reached its docking port on the station, after a slow move out of Atlantis' payload bay.
Atlantis' crew got more good news on Tuesday, when Mission Control said they would not have to repair a thermal blanket that has a torn corner. Engineers are confident the blanket, located near the shuttle's tail, will stand up to the intense heat of re-entry at flight's end.

The European Space Agency waited years to see Columbus fly. The lab was supposed to go up in 1992 to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the sailing of Christopher Columbus, but space station and thems delayed everything.

Full article at: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080212/ap_on_sc/space_shuttle

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