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NASA Sets Hubble Mission Launch For September 2008

The Hubble space telescope.
by Staff Writers
UPI Correspondent
Houston (UPI) June 7, 2007
NASA has targeted Sept. 10, 2008 for the launch of the fifth and final space shuttle servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope. National Aeronautics and Space Administration officials in Houston said space shuttle Atlantis will transport seven astronauts to repair and upgrade the orbiting observatory during the 11-day mission. The servicing is designed to allow Hubble to operate through 2013.

Mission planners have been working since last fall, when the flight was announced, to determine the best time in the shuttle launch schedule to support the needs of Hubble while minimizing the impact to International Space Station assembly.

NASA also will support a "launch on need" flight during the Hubble mission. In the unlikely event a rescue flight became necessary, space shuttle Endeavour would be launched for the Kennedy Space Center.

NASA said shuttle missions beyond the Hubble flight are still being assessed. The shuttles are to be retired when construction of the space station is completed.

The Hubble Space Telescope is an international cooperative project between NASA and the European Space Agency.

Source: United Press International
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Atlantis Ready For First Shuttle Flight Of The Year
Washington (AFP) Jun 06, 2007
After a three-month delay, Atlantis is ready to blast off Friday on the first space shuttle mission of the year as NASA presses on with efforts to complete the International Space Station. Atlantis was originally scheduled to launch in March, but a freak hail storm damaged the shuttle's massive external fuel tank as the orbiter stood on its Florida launch pad, forcing NASA to bring it back to its hangar for repairs.

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