NASA Prepares for Extra Space Shuttle Mission

Atlantis at the pad for the STS-132 mission. Will she fly again? Credit: Alan Walters (awaltersphoto.com) for Universe Today

On Thursday, the Space Shuttle Program set a target launch date of June 28, 2011 for the STS-135 mission, the “extra” shuttle flight that was approved in the 2010 NASA Authorization Act. The STS-135 mission – if not required as a “Launch on Need” rescue flight for STS-133 or STS-134 — would have the shuttle Atlantis and a 4-member crew carry a fully-loaded Raffaello multipurpose logistics module to deliver supplies, logistics and spare parts to the International Space Station. Whether the mission actually flies, however, depends on if Congress decides to approve NASA’s proposed budget for 2011. There has been rumors that NASA’s budget could be on the chopping block. But NASA needs to begin preparing in case the flight is approved. (…) Read the rest of NASA Prepares for Extra Space Shuttle Mission (567 words)

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