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Endeavour's departure from Florida now delayed until Wednesday

September 17, 2012|By Amina Khan | Los Angeles Times
  • Bad weather will force the space shuttle Endeavour to spend one more night in Florida. It will leave Kennedy Space Center aboard a 747 on Wednesday, NASA says.
Bad weather will force the space shuttle Endeavour to spend one more night… (Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles…)

NASA space shuttle Endeavour’s departure for Los Angeles has been delayed another day, officials at Kennedy Space Center said Monday.

A low-pressure front in the northern Gulf of Mexico is generating stormy weather along Endeavour’s flight path, grounding the orbiter until Wednesday.

Endeavour, mounted onto a specially modified 747 carrier aircraft, was originally set to be ferried to its final home in the California Science Center at sunrise Monday.

Managers are considering their options, NASA spokesman Mike Curie said. The planned touchdown at LAX was set for Thursday. A Wednesday departure would further squeeze the ferry flight's original three-day window.

The threat of thunderstorms had already prompted managers on Sunday to postpone the shuttle’s departure from Cape Canaveral by 24 hours to Tuesday, shortening its scheduled visit to the Johnson Space Center in Houston. Now, NASA officials are discussing how the delay will affect the shuttle’s flight path and scheduled visit to Houston, home of the astronaut office.

Thus far, said NASA spokesman Mike Curie, “the forecast for Wednesday looks good.” By then, the low-pressure system should have moved northeast and out of the Gulf region.

NASA officials will hold another weather briefing Wednesday at 11 a.m. Eastern.

Follow me on Twitter @aminawrite.

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