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ExoLance
Feb. 7 tentative date for shuttle launch
Posted: Fri, Jan 11, 2008, 6:47 AM ET (1147 GMT)
STS-122: logo (NASA) Shuttle managers have set February 7 as the tentative date for the launch of the shuttle Atlantis, assuming repairs to the shuttle's external tank are completed as planned. NASA had previously announced a launch date of no earlier than January 24th, but admitted at the time that everything had to go perfectly to allow a launch on that date. The new launch date is dependent on completing repairs to electrical connectors that caused erroneous readings from engine cutoff sensors when the tank was filled with liquid hydrogen during two launch attempts and a tanking test in December. NASA must also discuss launch plans with the Russians, who have planned to launch a Progress cargo spacecraft to the ISS at the same time. If the date is confirmed, it would be almost exactly two months after the original date for the launch of mission STS-122, which is carrying a European lab module to the ISS.
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