Feeds

NASA greenlights shuttle, gets on with ISS construction

Must be home for the new year, though

Intelligent flash storage arrays

NASA's next Shuttle mission is to blast off next Thursday, the space agency confirmed yesterday.

The mission, which will last for 12 days, will see the NASA astronauts undertake yet more of the much delayed construction work on the International Space Station. This time they will "install a new segment of the station's girder-like truss and activate the station's permanent, complex power and cooling systems", NASA says.

The launch has been given the go ahead despite concerns that any delays to either the launch or landing schedule could mean the Shuttle would be in orbit over the end of the year, leaving it vulnerable to a "millennium bug" style date-change software glitch.

The onboard computers are not set up to switch to a new "Day One" when the year ends, but the ground computers are. If it is still in orbit over the new year, the computer could be reset, but that would mean the Shuttle would be flying blind, without navigation updates or vehicle control. Not ideal.

At the end of the mission, ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter will return to Earth aboard Discovery. NASA astronaut Sunita Williams will stay behind for a six month tour of duty on the space station. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
'Utter killjoy Reg hacks have NEVER BEEN LAID', writes a fan
'Shuddit, smarty pants!' Some readers reacted badly to our last Doctor Who review ...
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
White LED lies: It's great, but Nobel physics prize-winning great?
How artificial lighting could offer an artificial promise
Origins of SEXUAL INTERCOURSE fished out of SCOTTISH LAKE
Fossil find proves it first happened 385 million years ago
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.