NASA Delays Shuttle Mission

4-29-05 - KENNEDY SPACE CENTER (AP) NASA's new chief says there won't be a "rush to flight" -- and the space shuttle now won't be taking off until at least July.

The space agency today postponed "Discovery's" May launch to July 12th, at the earliest.

Administrator Michael Griffin says recent safety reviews prompted the delay. Officials say they need more time to ensure foam chunks or ice won't break off during launch and damage the shuttle.

A chunk of debris slammed into "Columbia's" wing at liftoff in 2003 and is blamed for the disintegration of that shuttle during re-entry over East Texas that February.

NASA's top spaceflight official says Discovery's fuel tank needs more repairs.


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