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PR 53-1993: Endeavour returns from Hubble servicing

PR 53-1993: Endeavour returns from Hubble servicing

17 December 1993

The first Hubble Space Telescope (*) servicing mission ended this morning with a nighttime landing at the Kennedy Space Centre, Florida. The space shuttle Endeavour emerged from the Florida night sky and touched down at 05:26 UT

During the hour-long descent from space ESA astronaut Claude Nicollier helped mission commander Dick Covey and pilot Ken Bowersox monitor the shuttle's cockpit displays.

During their 11-day mission the astronauts fitted the telescope with corrective optics and a new set of European solar panels. If all goes according to plan the observatory will be restored to very nearly its original capability. The first images from the rejuvenated telescope should be released in about 6-8 weeks.

ESA had a major role in this mission. In addition to providing the solar arrays, the European Space Agency helped NASA test the Costar corrective optics system. ESA astronaut Claude Nicollier operated the shuttle's robot arm throughout the complex spacewalks to service the telescope and during the crucial capture and release phases.

"This was a particularly important international mission from the standpoint of our Swiss and European Space Agency crew member Claude Nicollier, who played an incredibly important part in the repair of the Hubble Space Telescope," mission commander Dick told Swiss Minister of Internal Affairs Mrs Ruth Dreifuss, during a VIP telephone call on Sunday morning, "If there was an unsung hero of this mission it would be Claude and his arm because without them we could not have worked the way we did and been as successful as we were."


(*)The Hubble Space Telescope is the product of international cooperation between NASA and ESA

Last Update: 1 September 2019
24-Jun-2024 04:41 UT

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