AMS takes off

6 June 2011

The space shuttle Endeavour launched successfully on its 25th and final spaceflight on 16 May at 08.56 a.m. local time. It carried the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS-02), designed to operate as an external module on the International Space Station (ISS). Endeavour was scheduled to dock with the ISS nearly 48 hours later, on 18 May, for a 16-day mission. A problem with an auxilliary power unit had led to the last-minute postponement of the earlier planned launch on 29 April.

AMS will study the universe and its origin by searching for antimatter and dark matter while performing precision measurements of the composition and flux of cosmic rays. There will be more about the mission in the next issue of CERN Courier.

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