Shuttle Launching Pad Fire Simulated

From United Press International

NASA technicians simulated a launching pad fire and explosion Wednesday of the shuttle Atlantis and its nuclear-powered payload, the $1.4-billion Galileo Jupiter probe, in a critical test of emergency procedures.

According to the disaster scenario, Atlantis’ astronauts escaped but the shuttle and its cargo were lost in a conflagration that released a small amount of radiation, NASA spokesman George Diller said.

Meanwhile, engineers resolved a potential problem with Galileo and cleared the probe for its trip to the pad early Friday for blastoff on Oct. 12.