Flight window will reopen around Dec. 30; though mission managers will wait until Jan. 2 (to avoid flying during year-end software concerns). Stephen Frick, veteran shuttle flyer in command of Atlantis' 7- astronaut crew said:
"We want to thank everyone who worked so hard to get us into space this launch window," Frick and his STS-122 crewmates said in a group statement. "We were ready to fly, but understand that these types of technical challenges are part of the space program."Columbus Poised for Research Breakthroughs
European Space Agency's (ESA) Columbus laboratory!
The European Technology Exposure Facility is designed to provide cutting-edge research, on the front porch of the ISS!
PS: I call this Lab, "The Orbital Room" because much new information will evolve as cycles of 'Earth's orbit' are observed from its deck. :D
Hopefully today is the day for the Atlantis' STS-122 mission lift-off!
With millions of moving parts, the shuttle's best performance, is when propelled far outside our atmosphere. :D (update goes above this post)
NASA to Attempt Space Shuttle Launch on Sunday
NASA must launch Atlantis by Thursday in order that STS-122 mission flight sun angles do not become unfavorable for docked operations. If the shuttle cannot launch Sunday, the next opportunity opens up on Monday at 2:55 p.m. EST (1955 GMT). -NASA's 4th shuttle flight of 2007 & 2nd this year!
Meanwhile, something else to anticipate and look hopeful for...
Said to be a study of our earliest beginnings; the NASA Dawn Project made its on-schedule departure 3 months ago... And will reveal much exacting imagery & samples, concerning changes in Earth climate... Especially as the need for more accurate information evolves. (Ret. 2011!)
View Great Video compiled by NASA’s Dawn Project…
Here they discuss the start of the launch; now in motion! Mission Scientists & Engineers explain the Science & Technological challenges of visiting the Asteroid Belt… And the Ion-propulsion engines, once confined to science fiction, which made it possible… A Cape Canaveral Lift-off to Asteroids! And what a lovely Cape Canaveral lift off it was... NASA's Dawn spacecraft rocketed away earlier (yesterday) toward its unprecedented double encounter in the asteroid belt! story