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European Space Lab Set for Launch

November 30th, 2007 Posted in Science and Technology

Finally after 25 years in the making, Europe’s treasured space laboratory Columbus will be launched on a flight to the Internatinal Space Station on Thursday.? The $2 billion lab began development in 1982 and was intended to lauch in 1992 to celebrate the 500th aniversary of Christopher Columbus’?historic sailing.

But because of numerous setbacks at NASA the first pieces of the space station were not launched until 1998 and the official residence on the station did not begin until 2000.? Additional setbacks with shuttle flights including the loss of the Columbia shuttle in 2003 further stalled Europe’s mission into space.

The Colombus lab will be the second lab and the eighth room added to the International Space Station.? NASA’s lab which is larger than the 23 foot long European lab, was carried to the space station in 2001.? The Japanese? Space Agency is also reading their lab which will be the largest and most elaborate of them all .? Three shuttle flights will be required to transport all the pieces of the Japanese lab Kibo, to the station.? The first of these flights is scheduled to begin in February 2008.

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