NASA clears space shuttle for Monday launch

Flight carrying Gabrielle Giffords' astronaut husband is set to blast off

Published May 14, 2011 8:55PM (EDT)


NASA's next-to-last space shuttle flight is set to blast off Monday morning.

Mission managers gave the green light Saturday for the final voyage of Endeavour. Forecasters put the odds of acceptable weather at 70 percent.

Endeavour will fly to the International Space Station under the command of astronaut Mark Kelly, the husband of recuperating U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. She will be at Cape Canaveral for this second launch attempt.

Late last month, an electrical problem in Endeavour's engine compartment halted the initial countdown. A switch box and faulty thermostat were replaced.

Six veteran spacemen are assigned to the 16-day flight.

Only one other shuttle mission remains. Atlantis will soar one last time in July.

By Marcia Dunn

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