Friday, April 01, 2011

Endeavour launch rehearsal moves into afternoon

The dress rehearsal for Endeavour's planned April 19 blastoff on its final flight has been pushed back from this morning to this afternoon after severe weather over the past two days delayed preparations.

Six Endeavour astronauts were originally scheduled to don their orange launch-and-entry suits, ride out to launch pad 39A and strap into seats aboard Endeavour by about 8 a.m. A countdown clock would have ticked down to seconds before a simulated blastoff at 11 a.m.

Now the rehearsal is expected to conclude around 2 p.m.

Managers plan to meet this morning to confirm schedules. Also, teams still plan to conduct inspections to confirm high winds, small hail and lightning since Wednesday didn't cause any serious damage to Endeavour.

IMAGE: The STS-134 crew members posed in front of the space shuttle wall tribute in the Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center on Thursday . Kennedy employees who have supported the Space Shuttle Program throughout the last 30 years have been signing the wall as a tribute to the program. From left, are Mission Specialists Greg Chamitoff, Michael Fincke, Andrew Feustel, Pilot Greg H. Johnson, Mission Specialist Roberto Vittori, with the European Space Agency, and Commander Mark Kelly. Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett

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