CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) _ With ideal weather expected for tomorrow's shuttle launch, European space officials are growing increasingly exhilarated as each passing trouble-free hour brings their long-delayed science lab closer to liftoff.
The laboratory, Columbus, was packed aboard space shuttle Atlantis. As NASA breezed through its countdown, the lab and shuttle were declared ready to fly to the international space station following a high-level review by managers yesterday.
Columbus has been in the works for a quarter-century. It is a 23-foot-long, high-tech laboratory worth two billion dollars that was built in Europe and will be controlled from there once it is attached to the space station.
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