NASA sends space shuttle back to hangar

Monday, October 20th 2008, 12:12 pm
By: News 9

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) -- NASA pulled space shuttle Atlantis off the launch pad and sent it back to the hangar Tuesday.

There, it'll await its trip to the Hubble Space Telescope next year.

Atlantis was originally scheduled to blast off this month on a mission to make various repairs and upgrade the telescope. But the Hubble broke down three weeks ago and stopped sending data for its space pictures. That forced NASA to regroup and delay its mission until February at the earliest.

Now, astronauts will need time to train for a telescope repair they hadn't planned on.

Atlantis' return to the Vehicle Assembly Building marks the 18th time in 25 years that NASA has had to pull a launch-ready spacecraft off the pad.