Feeds

Space shuttle Discovery launched

New International Space Station module in tow

Top three mobile application threats

The space shuttle Discovery was successfully launched today, despite zero-hour concerns about a chunk of ice on the fuel tank.

The crew of seven blasted off at 11:38 a.m. EST, on a 14-day mission to begin the refurbishment of the $100bn International Space Station which will house Europe's first permanent laboratory in orbit.

"I'd like to wish you good luck, Godspeed and have a little fun up there," launch director Mike Leinbach told the crew before liftoff.

Just two hours before lift-off, a 10cm by 3.8cm piece of ice was discovered on plumbing between the external fuel tank and the shuttle. The ice, however, was determined to be too small by NASA to pose a serious launch hazard.

The astronauts will install a new Italian-built module for the space station called Harmony, which will serve as a berthing port for the anticipated Columbus laboratory. NASA plans to launch Columbus aboard the shuttle Atlantis on December 6 — a mere five years behind schedule.

Columbus will be the European Space Agency's main contribution to the space station, and has already cost the ESA $7.08bn. The lab is expected to run up an additional $5.66bn through its life-cycle.

The crew will also move an enormous girder and pair of solar panels to a new location on the space station.

Five spacewalks are planned, four to complete the construction and one to test a new method for fixing damaged shuttle thermal tiles. ®

Geocentrist artist's representation

Geocentrist artist's representation: While passing through heaven, they may spot

Abraham Lincoln, Florence Nightingale, and my childhood dog Wuffers.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
Power levels up 70 per cent as the rover keeps on truckin'
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
KILLER ROBOTS, DNA TAMPERING and PEEPING CYBORGS: the future looks bright!
Americans optimistic about technology despite being afraid of EVERYTHING
R.I.P. LADEE: Probe smashes into lunar surface at 3,600mph
Swan dive signs off successful science mission
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.