Most Dangerous Shuttle Mission Ever Gets Off to a Rough Start

They may have made it to space without blowing up, but just one day into their famously dangerous mission, the crew of the space shuttle Atlantis already have something to worry about: heat shield damage.

The scar, spotted during a standard survey of the shuttle's heat shields, was described by NASA as "appear[ing]very minor", and occurred at a very early stage of the launch. Similar damage cast a pall over a space shuttle Endeavor mission in 2007, though repairs—Hollywood-style or otherwise—probably won't be necessary.

The astronauts will just have to put this out of mind while they carry out their ridiculously difficult Hubble repair mission, but it certainly won't make their reentry and landing, scheduled for about 10 days from now, any less stressful. [Daily Mail, Images courtesy of AP]

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