Space History Photo: Discovery External Tank Connection Check

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In November of 1999, Ken Strite inspects the connection between the Space Shuttle Discovery and the external tank to be used during STS-103 mission launch. (Image credit: NASA.)

In this historical photo from the U.S. space agency, in the Vehicle Assembly Building, Ken Strite, NASA Quality Control, inspects the connection between Space Shuttle Discovery and the external tank that will be used to launch mission STS-103 in early December of 1999.

This 10 day mission is designed to replace aging parts on the nine year old Hubble Space Telescope and to upgrade some of its functioning systems. During the flight, the astronaut crew will replace all six of the observatory's gyroscopes, a fine guidance sensor, its main computer, and other equipment.

Each weekday, looks back at the history of spaceflight through photos (archive).

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The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is the U.S. government agency in charge of the civilian space program as well as aeronautics and aerospace research. Founded in 1958, NASA is a civilian space agency aimed at exploring the universe with space telescopes,  satellites, robotic spacecraft, astronauts and more. The space agency has 10 major centers based across the U.S. and launches robotic and crewed missions from the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral Florida. It's astronaut corps is based at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. To follow NASA's latest mission, follow the space agency on Twitter or any other social channel, of visit: