HUBBLE MISSION PHOTOS: Telescope's Final Tune-Up

HUBBLE MISSION PHOTOS: Telescope's Final Tune-Up
    1 of 6   Next >>
May 21, 2009--NASA's space shuttle Atlantis launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on May 11, 2009, for the last manned mission to improve and repair the Hubble Space Telescope.

The seven-member crew, slated to return to Earth on Friday, successfully completed their ambitious to-do list for the 11-day mission, which included installing two new science instruments and repairing two ailing ones.

The repairs were tricky, though, because the individual instruments aboard the 19-year-old observatory had not been designed to be fixed in space.

"If we actually repair the two broken instruments ... we'll have the best Hubble ever--there's no question," Edward Weiler, who leads NASA's science division, had said before the launch.

--Rebecca Carroll
—Photograph courtesy NASA
 
NEWS FEEDS    After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed. After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.

Get our news delivered directly to your desktop—free.
How to Use XML or RSS




 

50 Drives of a Lifetime

Listen to your favorite National Geographic news daily, anytime, anywhere from your mobile phone. No wires or syncing. Download Stitcher free today.