Sunday, July 02, 2006


Not looking too good here today.....

CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida (Reuters) - Thunderstorms threatened NASA's plan to launch space shuttle Discovery on Sunday on a mission critical to the future of the shuttle program and the half-built International Space Station.

NASA forecasters predicted a 70 percent chance that weather would delay the launch, as it did a planned launch on Saturday. Flashes of lightning were visible before dawn at Cape Canaveral, where the Kennedy Space Center is located.

No other problems were noted at the center, as U.S. space agency workers began the process of filling the shuttle's massive fuel tank with super-cold liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen. Launch is set for 3:26 p.m. (1926 GMT).

The flight is only the second since the 2003 Columbia accident, and another disaster or serious problem likely would end the program. NASA is hoping to fly 16 more missions to finish building the $100 billion space station before the shuttle fleet is retired in 2010.

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