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Discovery Crew Inspects Shuttle Looking for Possible Damage

  • VOA News

The U.S. space agency, NASA, says it is looking at data from the launch of the shuttle Discovery, which might have suffered some damage during lift-off.

At a news conference in Houston Wednesday, NASA officials said Discovery's seven-member crew is examining the shuttle to help determine the extent of damage to a thermal tile on the spacecraft. A small piece of that tile appeared to break away from the spacecraft during lift-off.

However, NASA officials say that so far, they have seen nothing to cause alarm. Lead shuttle flight director Paul Hill said that things are going "extremely well."

Tuesday's launch was the first since NASA grounded shuttle missions two and a-half years ago after the Columbia disaster, in which a gouge in the wing caused the spacecraft to burn up while re-entering the atmosphere. All seven astronauts on board died.
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