Loading…
Sunday, December 28, 2014
Current Weather
Loading Current Weather....
Published: Tuesday, 7/4/2006

Space shuttle Discovery lifts off

ASSOCIATED PRESS

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - After two weather delays and last-minute foam trouble, Discovery and a crew of seven blasted off today on the first shuttle launch in a year, flying over objections from those within NASA who argued for more fuel-tank repairs.

The majestic shot NASA's first on Independence Day was only the second shuttle flight since the Columbia was brought down 3 1/2 years ago by a chunk of insulation foam breaking off the fuel tank.

The foam problem resurfaced during last July's flight of Discovery and again Monday, keeping the space agency debating safety all the way up to the eve of liftoff.

Discovery thundered away from its seaside pad at 2:38 p.m.

Commander Steven Lindsey, an Air Force fighter pilot, was at the controls and aiming for a linkup in two days with the international space station. Earlier, he and his crew waved small American flags on their way to the rocketship.

"Discovery's ready, the weather's beautiful, America is ready to return the space shuttle to flight. So good luck and Godspeed, Discovery," launch director Mike Leinbach said just before liftoff.

"I can't think of a better place to be here on the Fourth of July," radioed Lindsey. "For all the folks on the Florida east coast, we hope to very soon get you an up-close and personal look at the rocket's red glare."

Read more in later editions of The Blade and toledoblade.com.



Guidelines: Please keep your comments smart and civil. Don't attack other readers personally, and keep your language decent. If a comment violates these standards or our privacy statement or visitor's agreement, click the "X" in the upper right corner of the comment box to report abuse. To post comments, you must be a Facebook member. To find out more, please visit the FAQ.

Points of Interest