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Nation IN BRIEF : FLORIDA

Shuttle Retrieval Mission on Schedule

September 16, 1996|From Times Staff and Wire Reports

After a delay of seven weeks, the space shuttle Atlantis was fueled and scheduled to blast off today on a mission to retrieve U.S. astronaut Shannon Lucid from the Russian Mir space station, NASA officials at Cape Canaveral said. Atlantis is due home Sept. 26, ending Lucid's 188-day mission, a record for a woman and the longest spaceflight by an American. Lucid, 53, will be replaced aboard Mir by John Blaha, 54. Atlantis' launching was postponed by equipment problems, weather and a scheduling conflict.

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