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August 20, 2007

Photosynth in orbit: New images from Endeavour mission

Posted by Benjamin J. Romano at 4:44 PM

Microsoft and NASA are posting new photographs of the space shuttle Endeavour's mission to the International Space Station, including detailed views of the gash in its heat-shield.

A few days before the shuttle launched, Microsoft posted several sets of photographs of the shuttle in the Vehicle Assembly Building and on the launch pad. They were in the company's new 3-D photo-viewing environment, Photosynth.

The new collection includes images of the shuttle captured Aug. 10 before it docked at the International Space Station. "Endeavour did a complete somersault enabling astronauts to photograph the shuttle's bottom-side. The photos were then sent back to NASA for analysis and later shared with Microsoft LiveLabs to compile a 'synth,'" a Microsoft representative said in an e-mail. The new photo collection can be accessed here.

NASA ultimately determined that the gash would not threaten the shuttle. Endeavour is scheduled to return to Earth on Tuesday, a day earlier than planned in order to avoid possible complications from Hurricane Dean.

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