Atlantis Prepares for Take Off

The countdown begins toward the first space shuttle flight of the year.

Engineers report no major technical problems and the weather forecast looks favorable for a June 8, 2007, launch of Atlantis.

The shuttle will carry seven astronauts on an eleven-day mission to the International Space Station.

They’ll deliver a third pair of solar wings which help power the station and will also take three spacewalks.

The launch was originally set for mid-March, but was postponed after a freak hail storm caused thousands of dings in the insulating foam on Atlantis’ external tank. Technicians spent more than two months making repairs to the tank.

The shuttle launches on June 8, at 7:38 p.m. E.T.

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