STS-122 must continue to wait - Launch of Space Shuttle Atlantis not before 7 February
11 January 2008
View of the external fuel tank
After investigations and the fixing of problems which led to launch delays in December, the launch date for mission STS-122 is now targeted for 7 February 2008 at 14:45 local time (20:45 Central European Time).
Technicians on Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida have completed the installation of the replacement feed-through connector in the engine cutoff sensor system to the internal connector. The feed-through connector passes the wires from the inside of the tank to the outside. The pins in the replacement connector have been skillfully soldered to create a connection that allows sensors inside the tank to send signals to the computers onboard Atlantis. Problems with the reports from the fuel-cutoff sensor caused the launch delays.
Atlantis's main objective during its STS-122 mission to the International Space Station is to install and activate Europe's Columbus laboratory, which will provide scientists around the world the ability to conduct a variety of experiments in life, physical, and materials science, Earth observation and solar physics.