Last mission to repair the Hubble telescope Hubble space telescope discoveries have enriched our understanding of the cosmos. In this special report, you will see facts about the Hubble space telescope, discoveries it has made and what the last mission's goals are.
For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
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Curb appeal for space station
Now it has a brand new room, adding 18 percent more living space, after Friday's space walk.
Published October 27, 2007
CAPE CANAVERAL - Astronauts added a new room to the international space station on Friday.
The school bus-size compartment - named Harmony - was attached by a team of spacewalkers working outside and robot arm operators working inside.
"I don't know that anybody's ever told our crew that we bring harmony with us, but we sure bring fun," Discovery's commander, Pamela Melroy, said as the space walk ended and the congratulations began.
The Italian-built Harmony - 24 feet long and 31,500 pounds - was unloaded from the shuttle's payload bay and hoisted into place by the space station's robot arm. It is a temporary location; it will be moved to its permanent spot once the shuttle leaves. European and Japanese laboratories will latch onto Harmony in the coming months.
It was the first of five space walks planned during Discovery's space station visit, and the first pressurized compartment added to the orbiting complex in six years.
The space station's living space grew by 18 percent with the addition of Harmony. The astronauts will enter Harmony today.
NASA confirmed Friday that Discovery's astronauts will not have to conduct any more inspections for launch damage and that the shuttle's thermal shielding appears to be in good condition for the Nov. 6 re-entry. An inspection will be done two days before landing, however, to check for possible impacts from orbital debris.
Spacewalkers Scott Parazynski and Douglas Wheelock helped prepare Harmony for the robot arm operation by Stephanie Wilson and Daniel Tani.
The two spacewalkers also disconnected ammonia coolant lines from a giant girder that will be moved along with a set of solar wings to another spot on the space station next week. They put covers over a radiator and electrical boxes on the girder to keep them warm.
While working with the ammonia lines, Parazynski encountered several drops of ammonia ice crystals that floated his way. His spacesuit did not seem to be contaminated. Nevertheless, both spacewalkers tested themselves before re-entering the cabin to make sure none of the toxic substance was brought inside.
Parazynski and Wheelock constantly checked the condition of their gloves during their six hours outdoors. An astronaut tore his glove on a sharp edge of the space station in August, and another did the same last December.
The two enjoyed the unobstructed view from 215 miles up.
"You just can't recreate that color blue on Earth, I don't know why," Parazynski said.
Meteor or visitors? NASA looking into '65 crash
WASHINGTON - NASA has agreed to search its archives once again for documents on a 1965 UFO incident in Pennsylvania, a step the space agency fought in federal court.
The government has refused to open its files about what, if anything, moved across the sky and crashed in the woods near Kecksburg, Pa., 40 miles southeast of Pittsburgh.
Traffic was tied up in the area as curiosity seekers drove there, only to be kept away from the crash site by soldiers.
The Air Force's explanation for the unidentified flying object: a meteor or meteors.
"They could not find anything," one Air Force memo stated after a late-night search on Dec. 9, 1965.
Several NASA employees also were reported to have been at the scene.
Eyewitnesses said a flatbed truck drove away a large object shaped like an acorn and about the size of a Volkswagen bus. A mockup based on the descriptions of local residents sits behind the Kecksburg Volunteer Fire Department.
UFO enthusiasts refused to let the matter die and journalist Leslie Kean of New York sued NASA four years ago for information.