NASA betting on a possible May 2006 for next Shuttle mission
NASA troubled with the Space Shuttle problems and the damage caused by the Katrina Hurricane has revealed that they are looking at a possible May 2006 date for the next shuttle mission. The agency is planning to launch this mission now that they have fixed the persistent problem with falling debris. This problem resulted in the disintegration of the Shuttle Columbia and caused safety problems on the Discovery mission.
However, a lot would depend upon how the space agency get its Michoud plan in New Orleans back to full strength after it suffered heavy damaged during the hurricane. This branch is crucial for the launch of the shuttle considering the shuttles’ massive external tanks are assembled at Michoud. The plant is currently operating with just 25% of the workers working.
Wayne Hale, the shuttle program manager spoke about their efforts: “It appears that the May launch window is something that we can begin to work toward now.â€ The space agency also revealed that the possible launch window exists between May 3 to May 23 and made it clear that these are just assumptions and nothing is confirmed at the moment.
The NASA grounded the entire Space Shuttle fleet after it decided to fix the problem first with the falling debris before launching another mission to space.