11 May 2009

sts - 125 space shuttle atlantis to launch today

screen grab from nasa tv

space shuttle atlantis is scheduled to launch at 1:01 p.m. cdt, [18:01 gmt] from the kennedy space center, florida.

Mission to Service NASA's Hubble Space Telescope
Veteran astronaut Scott Altman will command the final space shuttle mission to service NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, and retired Navy Capt. Gregory C. Johnson will serve as pilot. Mission specialists rounding out the crew are: veteran spacewalkers John Grunsfeld and Mike Massimino, and first-time space fliers Andrew Feustel, Michael Good and Megan McArthur.

During the 11-day mission's five spacewalks, astronauts will install two new instruments, repair two inactive ones and perform the component replacements that will keep the telescope functioning into at least 2014.

In addition to the originally scheduled work, Atlantis also will carry a replacement Science Instrument Command and Data Handling Unit for Hubble. Astronauts will install the unit on the telescope, removing the one that stopped working on Sept. 27, 2008, delaying the servicing mission until the replacement was ready. ~ latest space shuttle news from nasa
see also
sts-125 launch blog