Feb 10, 2008

NASA delayed Spacewalk till Monday

Atlantis is successfully docked with International Space Station. Now NASA engineers are assessing two small areas on the space shuttle Atlantis that may have received some damage during Thursday's launch. But, an important spacewalk scheduled for Sunday has been postponed until Monday, due to the illness of a German astronaut.

The spacewalk that had been set for Sunday to attach the European-made Columbus laboratory to the orbiting International Space Station was an important part of the mission. German astronaut Hans Schlagel, one of the Atlantis' crew of seven, will be replaced by US astronaut Stanley Love on the spacewalk, that will performed on Monday.

The switch was being made because of a "medical issue," said John Shannon, deputy shuttle program manager, at a briefing Saturday night. "It's a private medical matter," Shannon added. "I won't say more ... It's not life threatening."

The Atlantis' third spacewalk by Walheim and Love has also been rescheduled. Now the 11-day mission of the space shuttle Atlantis would also be extended by one day, with return to Earth set for February 19. Link


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