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Atlantis Slated to Return Friday

Posted by Lydia on May 21st, 2009

Atlantis’s heat shield has been reviewed and is safe for landing. The crew is anxious to get back home to Earth after a successful 11 day Hubble repair mission. Hubble is again ready to wow scientists, amateur, professional and arm chair astronomers worldwide at least until the year 2015. Monitoring the potential Floridian landfall of a tropical disturbance, Atlantis shut down all unnecessary functions to conserve power in case landing was delayed for another day. During the repair of the broken Space Telescope Imaging Spectrometer, Spacewalker Michael Massimino left his final historical touch on Hubble by ripping off a handrail when a stubborn bolt held fast. (Permission granted from Houston, of course!) The action is now forever known as “The Magic Massimo touch”. Atlantis is scheduled to return to the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida on Friday at 10:01 EDT (1401 GMT).

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