Program-Level Readiness Review Begins Today

Space Shuttle Program managers are meeting today and tomorrow at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston for a Flight Readiness Review, or FRR, for space shuttle Atlantis' upcoming STS-132 mission. The agency-level FRR is scheduled for May 5. During the 12-day mission, Atlantis and six astronauts will deliver an Integrated Cargo Carrier and a Russian-built Mini Research Module to the International Space Station.

Today in Houston, the STS-132 flight crew is taking part in an integrated ascent simulation.

Liftoff is targeted for May 14 at 2:20 p.m. EDT from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

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NASA Invites Reporters to Next Space Shuttle Launch and Tweetups

At the next space shuttle launch, NASA will host 150 people from around the world and provide them with a behind-the-scenes perspective to share with their followers via the social networking service Twitter.

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Solar Prominence

This new image from the Solar Dynamics Observatory’s Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) shows in great detail a solar prominence taken from a March 30, 2010 eruption. The twisting motion of the material is the most noticeable feature. Launched on Feb. 11, 2010, SDO is the most advanced spacecraft ever designed to study the sun. During its five-year mission, it will examine the sun's magnetic field and also provide a better understanding of the role the sun plays in Earth's atmospheric chemistry and climate. Since launch, engineers have been conducting testing and verification of the spacecraft’s components. Now fully operational, SDO will provide images with clarity 10 times better than high-definition television and will return more comprehensive science data faster than any other solar observing spacecraft. Image Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA

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