NASA says it will launch Atlantis as planned next month despite tiny cracks in the shuttle's door hinges.
Much larger cracks on Discovery's hinges prompted NASA last week to delay that shuttle's March military mission for up to two months for repairs. Discovery was moved off the launch pad before dawn Thursday for a nearly six-hour trip back to the hangar.Tests showed the two, quarter-inch cracks on two of Atlantis' flapper door hinges pose no danger, NASA spokeswoman Lisa Malone said Wednesday. She said Atlantis' crew was consulted during a conference call and approved of the go-ahead.
Repairs would have delayed lift-off, targeted for no earlier than April 4, by several weeks.