Oct 24, 2007

Space shuttle Discovery on a construction mission

The Space shuttle Discovery blasted off on Tuesday for a construction mission at the International Space Station, raising hope that NASA will be able to add laboratories for European and Japanese partners later this year.

Discovery started its journey from the seaside launch pad on time at 11:38 a.m. (1538 GMT), defying forecasts of poor weather and a potential delay from an ice buildup on its fuel tank. It quickly disappeared from view behind low-lying clouds before reaching orbit 8.5-minutes later.

The seven-member crew, led by retired Air Force colonel Pamela Melroy, 46, plans to spend 10 days at the station preparing it for the arrival of Europe's Columbus laboratory in early December.

Five spacewalks are planned during Discovery's visit to move and reattach a pair of the station's solar wing panels, install a vestibule so Columbus and Japan's Kibo module can be attached and other tasks.

Take a look at the Reuters video report on this mission of Space shuttle Discovery. Link


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