Atlantis space shuttle to retire first

first_imgCAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – Atlantis will be the first of NASA’s three space shuttles to be retired, most likely in 2008, as the shuttle program winds down in four years, a senior agency official said Tuesday. Atlantis’ parts will be used by the remaining shuttles, Discovery and Endeavour, until the aging spacecraft are mothballed in 2010, shuttle program manager Wayne Hale told workers at the Kennedy Space Center last week. Atlantis, which began flying in 1985, was chosen for retirement first since it was scheduled for maintenance, a process that could take two years. The $3 billion shuttle likely will have four or five more flights to the international space station before retirement. “The reasoning is instead of taking it off-line for two years and spending a lot of money to return it to flight when it probably would fly only one time at the most, why spend that extra money, when you don’t need to?” NASA spokesman Bruce Buckingham said Tuesday at the Kennedy Space Center. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurantlast_img read more

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