[singlepic=66,240,200,,right]The US space agency begun a three-day countdown on Wednesday at 5 p.m. (EDT), in preparation for the launch of its next space shuttle mission on Saturday.

During a countdown status briefing at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, NASA Test Director Jeff Spaulding announced that “Discovery is in excellent shape.”

“We’re tracking no issues in our preparation at this point. Our teams have been working tirelessly during this last year to help make this flight and all shuttle flights as safe as possible for the crews,” he said. “As we approach our nation’s 230th birthday, I’m proud to announce that the launch vehicle, the launch and flight teams and flight crew are ready to launch and continue our mission completing the space station.”

Payload Manager Debbie Hahn indicated the payloads have been loaded into the orbiter and are ready for flight.

Launch Weather Officer Kathy Winters reported there is a 60-percent chance that weather may prevent launch on Saturday. A Bermuda high could improve the weather, but the Space Coast will be dealing with thunderstorms and anvil clouds which could be an issue because of lightning strikes.

Related Links:
Discovery Launch set for 1st July
Space Shuttle Discovery Team Arrives
Shuttle approved for launch
Space Shuttle Discovery Readies itself for Launch
NASA: Space Shuttle
Shuttle launch countdown begins (BBC)

If you have an Apple Mac, running OS 10.4 or above, you can now download the Kennedy Space Center Video Feeds Widget, and watch time-laps video ‘live’ from the Kennedy Space Center. You can download more Dashboard Widget from Apple.

Written by CW Staff

In the late 80s I started investigating UFOs and crop circles and joined the CCCS (Centre for Crop Circle Studies) and a local group researching strange sightings and reports along the south coast of Dorset (UK). In the early ’90s I started my own research group called SPS (Strange Phenomena Studies), this was renamed in 2004 to Cryptoworld.