Monday, April 4, 2011

Targeted Launch Date For Endeavour Shuttle Pushed Back To April 29; More Likely Giffords To Attend?

NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) announced today that the target date for the launch of the Space Shuttle Endeavour is pushed back to April 29 (12:47p.m., Arizona time). Although not the stated reason - scheduling conflicts with a Russian supply ship - the ten extra days may make it more likely that Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-CD8) will be able to attend and watch her husband, Cmdr. Mark Kelly, lead the shuttle crew into space.

In addition to the scheduling conflict with the Russian Progress 42 flight, NASA has indicated that strong thunderstorms in the launch area last week apparently caused "minor damage" to the foam surrounding the external fuel tank.

Giffords has been reported to be making continued good progress in her therapy following the January 8 attempted assassination, and many - including her husband - are expecting her to be in Florida for the shuttle launch later this month.
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