NASA Space Shuttle Atlantis Set for Launch

The STS-122 Space Shuttle Atlantis mission actively remains on schedule, says NASA.

The STS-122 Space Shuttle Atlantis mission actively remains on schedule, says NASA.

NASA plans to fix a bent cooling system hose which will not delay the launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis. Engineers designed a tool to guide the hose back into the storage box.

Space Shuttle Atlantis actively remains on schedule for February 7, 2008, at 2:45 PM EST from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

During launch preparations at Kennedy, technicians noticed a small section of a braided metal hose that was bent in a shape similar to the Greek letter Omega. The radiator retracts the hose, part of the shuttle’s cooling system that carries Freon, is designed to flex. However, engineers wanted to make sure they were not overlooking potential problems and designed a tool to guide the hose back into the storage box. Testing in Huntington Beach, Calif., has proven successful and program managers gave the go-ahead to close payload bay doors using the tool instrument on Sunday evening.

The NASA teams of controllers at Kennedy, Johnson Space Center in Houston, and Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., will be joined by European teams based in Germany for the mission. The German-based controllers will oversee the complicated operation of the new Columbus laboratory which is tucked inside Atlantis’ payload bay.
The lab, built in Italy and outfitted in Germany, will be the second dedicated research facility taken to the International Space Station. It can hold 10 racks dedicated to experiments reporting a wide range of space science.

Atlantis’ seven astronauts will arrive at Kennedy Monday at 10:30 AM, and the countdown clock will begin ticking down Monday at 5 PM.