NASA to televise Jules Verne maneuvers

The U.S. space agency said it will televise a series of maneuvers by the European Space Agency's Jules Verne spacecraft next week.

The automated transfer vehicle, or ATV, is to begin a series of automated approaches in preparation for an eventual docking with the International Space Station. NASA Television will broadcast the most critical maneuvers on its Web site March 31 and April 3, with commentary from controllers at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Johnson Space Center in Houston.

The March 31 coverage will begin at 10 a.m. EDT as the ATV begins an approach to the station from a distance of two miles. It will move to within 36 feet of the station before an abort signal is sent to move the ATV away from the complex for its final approach three days later. The maneuvers will test systems required for a safe automated docking.

On April 3, NASA TV coverage will begin at 7 a.m. EDT as the cargo ship prepares for a 10:40 a.m. EDT docking.

The ATV will remain at the space station until early August, when it will undock and burn up after entering the Earth's atmosphere.

NASA-TV is available at>

Copyright 2008 by United Press International

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