Feeds

Atlantis crew wrap heatshield inspection

Shuttle robot arm exits world stage

The Power of One Infographic

The crew of space shuttle Atlantis have wrapped an inspection of the spacecraft's thermal protection system, ahead of the veteran spaceplane's planned return to Kennedy Space Center on Thursday morning.

NASA reports: "They used the 50-foot long Orbiter Boom Sensor System to conduct a high fidelity, three-dimensional scan of areas of the shuttle that experience the highest heating during entry - the wing leading edges and nose cap. Managers and engineers in Mission Control will review the data today and tomorrow to validate the heat shield’s integrity."

Since every shuttle report now has to contain the word "final" at least once, the agency adds: "This marks the final use of the shuttle’s robotic arm, dating back to its inaugural flight on the shuttle Challenger in April 1983 on the STS-7 mission, operated by the first American woman to fly in space, Sally Ride."

Atlantis undocked from the International Space Station earlier today, and here's NASA's video round-up of the departure:

NASA's main space shuttle section is here. ®

Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 claimed lives of HIV/AIDS cure scientists
Researchers, advocates, health workers among those on shot-down plane
Forty-five years ago: FOOTPRINTS FOUND ON MOON
NASA won't be back any time soon, sadly
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Mwa-ha-ha-ha! Eccentric billionaire Musk gets his PRIVATE SPACEPORT
In the Lone Star State, perhaps appropriately enough
MARS NEEDS OCEANS to support life - and so do exoplanets
Just being in the Goldilocks zone doesn't mean there'll be anyone to eat the porridge
Diary note: Pluto's close-up is a year from … now!
New Horizons is less than a year from the dwarf planet
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
prev story

Whitepapers

Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.