The launch of the Shuttle Endeavour, one of three remaining launches for NASA’s shuttle program has been pushed back to mid-November. The Endeavour which was scheduled to lift off on July 29 in a mission that would deliver an EXPRESS Logistics Carrier-3 (ELC-3) and an Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) to the International Space Station, has been temporarily grounded to modify its cargo – a $1.5 billion particle detector.
This device will mounted on the station for an extended series of physics experiments, including a search for the universe’s mysterious dark matter. The spectrometer may also help scientists gain new insights into the nature of antimatter and the origins of cosmic rays.
The move now makes Endeavour’s STS-134 mission NASA’s last space flight after nearly 30 years of orbiter flights. Shuttle Atlantis is still on target to lift off on May 14 from Cape Canaveral, FL. In lieu of the launch, viewing tickets on the NASA Causeway and Kennedy Space Center tickets are already sold out. But there are still limited viewing tickets for the Astronaut Hall of Fame.