HOUSTON – NASA has tentatively set the final space shuttle mission for May 31, 2010, four months before the shuttle fleet retires.
NASA has 10 missions remaining for the shuttle fleet, which President Bush ordered to retire by Sept. 30, 2010.
The schedule announced Monday and reported in the Houston Chronicle includes five flights this year, five in 2009 and three in 2010.
Some members of Congress want to add at least one more mission, to carry the $1.6 billion Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer to the space station.
The mission was one of about a dozen canceled after space shuttle Columbia broke apart upon re-entry in 2003.
Once the shuttles retire, work will focus on the Ares rocket and Orion capsule that will be used to return astronauts to the moon.