Endeavour's return may be moved forward due to hurricane

The return of the US space shuttle Endeavour could be moved forward by 24 hour due to Hurricane Dean, which is growing in strength in the Caribbean, a NASA official said.

Endeavour's return may be moved forward due to hurricane
Dean intensified late Friday to a category four storm, packing fearsome winds of up to 215 kilometers (135 miles) per hour, as it blasted across the Caribbean toward Jamaica.

US space officials are concerned that if the hurricane veers toward the Texas coast, where the Johnson Space Center is located, it could affect the spacecraft's landing.

"We'd really like to protect an option to end the mission on Tuesday," LeRoy Cain, chairman of the mission management team, told reporters.

"The center will have to make a decision in the mid-Sunday to mid-Monday on whether or not to close," he added. "But the decision to land Endeavour early would have to be made well before that."

The shuttle is currently scheduled to return to earth on Wednesday.

AFP
Last Mod: 18 Ağustos 2007, 10:52
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