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Saturday, December 2, 2006

Countdown approaching for Needham astronaut

Astronaut Williams at a recent news briefing.
(Getty Photo by Dave Einsel)


Liftoff is scheduled for next Thursday for the Discovery space shuttle, with a crew that will include Navy Commander Sunita Williams, who considers Needham her hometown.

Williams, who will spend six months on the international space station that has been orbiting the earth, tells The Associated Press in a story today that she's always wanted to fly a long-duration mission.

"A long-duration spaceflight will supply answers ... to what happens to the human body, how materials work in space," she said.

In addition to staying at the space station, Williams will help operate the space station's robotic arm. She will also take a spacewalk to rewire the station.

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