Atlantis crew find damaged heat shield tilesMay 13th, 2009 - 3:33 am ICT by John Le Fevre
By John Le Fevre
The crew of the space shuttle Atlantis have discovered damaged tiles on an area measuring about 21-inches (about 53cm) during an inspection prior to docking with the Hubble Space Telescope on Wednesday.
The damaged tiles span four of the space shuttles thermal tiles located on the starboard side of the craft where the wings join the forward fuselage.
Nasa flight director Tony Ceccacci said that while the initial impression was that the damage was minor, it would be analyzed by experts to ensure the space shuttles heat shield was in good condition.
Debris came off the space shuttle 104 seconds after lift off from Kennedy Space Center, Fla., on Monday.
The crew used Atlantis’ robotic arm and orbiter boom to inspect the shuttles underside and the leading edges of the wings prior to docking withe Hubble Space Telescope
The crew of the STS-125 also checked the tools they will use during five scheduled spacewalks to carry-out repairs and fit extra equipment designed to keep the telescope operating until 2014.
The servicing mission by the crew of Atlantis is the fourth maintenance trip since the Hubble Space Telescope was carried into orbit by the Space Shuttle Discovery in April 1990.
The Hubble Space Telescope is scheduled to be replaced in 2013 when the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), is due to be launched.
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- NASA examines long stretch of nicks on space shuttle Atlantis - May 13, 2009
- NASA transfers shuttle Discovery to museum - Apr 20, 2012
- Atlantis docks for last time with International Space Station - Jul 11, 2011
- NASA's space shuttle Endeavour docks with International Space Station - May 19, 2011
- NASA's Shuttle Atlantis Launches on a Final Mission to Hubble - May 12, 2009
- Atlantis' landing ends final mission after 30 years of space shuttle era - Jul 21, 2011
- NASA final shuttle launch scheduled for July 8 - May 21, 2011
- Atlantis takes off for final flight to space station - May 15, 2010
- NASA's Space Shuttle Atlantis lifts off on final voyage - May 15, 2010
- Atlantis docks with space station one last time - Jul 10, 2011
- NASA's shuttle Discovery glides home after successful mission - Mar 29, 2009
- NASA's space shuttle Endeavour ends final mission - Jun 01, 2011
- Space shuttle Endeavour returns to Earth after final mission - Jun 01, 2011
- Shuttle Discovery heads to International Space Station on its final mission - Feb 25, 2011
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