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Hurricane could bring shuttle mission to early end
Posted: Sat, Aug 18, 2007, 11:30 AM ET (1530 GMT)
STS-118: logo (NASA) NASA is considering bringing the space shuttle Endeavour back to Earth as soon as Tuesday as a powerful hurricane heads towards the Texas coast. Endeavour was scheduled to end the STS-118 mission on Wednesday with a landing in Florida, but NASA is now considering a Tuesday landing there instead. Hurricane Dean, a category 4 hurricane in the Caribbean, is on a path that could bring it to Texas by midweek; NASA would like to have the shuttle on the ground before then to avoid any disruptions that could ensure if the storm threatens mission control in Houston. To prepare for a possible early departure, NASA cut two hours off a spacewalk being conducted Saturday outside the station, which would allow the shuttle and station crews to seal hatches separating the two late today in support of a Sunday undocking.
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