Shuttle ready for piggy-backed plane ride

Jun 26, 2007

NASA scientists readied space shuttle Atlantis for a "piggy-backed" ride atop a Boeing 747 airplane this week to the Kennedy Space Center.

That journey will cap shuttle's STS-117 mission that officially ended Friday when it landed at Edwards Air Force Base in California.

Known as a ferry-flight, the orbiter will make the cross-country trip in one or two days, depending on weather conditions. The first leg is set for Friday.

The STS-117 mission started with a June 8 launch, arriving at the International Space Station June 10. The crew conducted four spacewalks to continue the station's construction, as well as repairing part of the shuttle's thermal blanket,w which was damaged during launch.

The return to Earth ended astronaut Suni Williams' record for the longest spaceflight by a woman: 194 days, 18 hours and 58 minutes.

The next shuttle mission is slated to launch in August.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

Explore further: France raises heat on decision for next Ariane rocket

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

SpaceX's next cargo launch set for Sept 20

Sep 12, 2014

SpaceX's next unmanned cargo trip to restock supplies at the International Space Station is scheduled for September 20, the US space agency said Friday.

China to launch second space lab in 2016, official says

Sep 10, 2014

China will launch its second orbiting space laboratory in two years' time, a top official said Wednesday, the latest step in an ambitious space programme Beijing says will one day land a Chinese man on the ...

Europe readies 'space plane' for sub-orbital test flight

Sep 09, 2014

The European Space Agency on Tuesday put the final touches to its first-ever "space plane" before blasting it into sub-orbit for tests aimed at eventually paving the way to the continent's first space shuttle.

Recommended for you

Miranda: An icy moon deformed by tidal heating

10 hours ago

Miranda, a small, icy moon of Uranus, is one of the most visually striking and enigmatic bodies in the solar system. Despite its relatively small size, Miranda appears to have experienced an episode of intense ...

The latest observations of interstellar particles

16 hours ago

With all the news about Voyager 1 leaving the heliosphere and entering interstellar space you might think that the probe is the first spacecraft to detect interstellar particles. That isn't entirely true, ...

User comments : 0