Atlantis to the Rescue

Today the space shuttle Atlantis blasted off from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, with seven astronauts on board. Their mission is to revamp and refresh the nearly 20 year old Hubbell space telescopehubbell, orbiting 350 miles above the Earth.

Launched by NASA in 1990, the Hubbell telescope was designed to be serviced in space by astronauts and to date there have been four such missions. Today’s mission, however, will be the last for the telescope. In 2014 the James Webb Space Telescope is due to be launched to replace it.

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