BBC Newsで英語らしい英語を。 Space shattle Atlantis makes final landing.

BBC News
21 July 2011 Last updated at 16:05 GMT

Space shuttle Atlantis makes final landing  By Jonathan Amos

Space shuttle Atlantis has landed back on Earth, bringing to a close
America's 30-year orbiter programme.
The vehicle swept into the Kennedy Space Center, its wheels touching the runwayjust before local sunrise.
Nasa's shuttles were instrumental in building the space station, and were used to
maintain the Hubble telescope.
"The space shuttle changed the way we view the world and it changed the way we
view the Universe," said commander Chris Ferguson on landing.
"There's a lot of emotion today but one thing's indisputable: America's not going to
stop exploring," he radioed to mission control.
Retirement of Nasa's iconic shuttle fleet was ordered by the US government, in part
due to the high cost of maintaining the ships.
The decision leaves the country with no means of putting astronauts in orbit.

Bringing to a close America’s 30-year orbiter programme: アメリカの30年間続いた人工衛星プログラムを終了させた。
Swept into>sweep into: 滑らかに入る。
 Its wheels touching the runway:
(landed を繰り返さないためにこの表現を使っている。)
Instrumental: being the means of bring something about (何かをもたらす手段となる) つまり、スペースステーションの建設に貢献した。
There ‘s a lot of emotion today: 今日は複雑な気持ちで一杯だが、
One thing’s indisputable: one thing that cannot be disputed or denied. 一つだけ議論の余地のない確実なことがある。
Iconic: 長い伝統を持つ
In part due to: 一つの理由としては
The decision leaves the country with no means of putting astronauts in orbit.:この終了の決定でアメリカは宇宙飛行士を軌道に乗せる手段がなくなることになる。
(Leave ~ withの使い方に注目。)

The US space agency’s intention is to invite the private sector to provide it with
space transport services, and a number of commercial ventures already have crew
ships in development.
These are unlikely to be ready to fly for at least three or four years, however.
In the interim, Nasa will rely on the Russians to ferry its people to and from the
International Space Station (ISS).
Despite the dark skies over Florida’s Space Coast, large crowds came out to try to
Atlantis as it made its historic return from orbit. Two thousand people were
gathered at Kennedy’s landing strip itself, but even in at the Johnson Space Center
in Texas, where mission control is sited, they came in huge numbers.

Invite: (このinviteの使い方に注目、~してもらうことを表現する時便利。ここでは宇宙開発を民間にやってもらうといっている。)
Be unlikely to: ~しそうにない。Be likely toの反対。
To ferry its people to and from the International Space Station (ISS):アメリカの宇宙飛行士のISSへの行きかえりの運送には
Try to glipse: 一目見ようと

The de-orbit track brought Atlantis across central Florida and the Titusville-Mims
area before a hard bank to the left put the vehicle on a line to Runway 15 at
Commander Ferguson, a veteran of two previous shuttle missions was at the controls, with his pilot Doug Hurley alongside him. Mission specialists Sandy Magnus and Rex Walheim were sitting directly behind on the flightdeck.
Their ship's rear wheels touched the ground at 0556 local time (0956 GMT; 1056 BST), and the vehicle was stationary under a minute later. It concluded a 13-day re-supply mission to the ISS.

Flightdeck: 操縦席
Stationary: not moving

The return of Atlantis marked a moment of high emotion for the Space Coast - not
least because
it will trigger a big lay-off of contractor staff. More than 3,000 people
involved in shuttle operations lose their jobs this week.
Mindful of this, Nasa Administrator and former astronaut Charles Bolden was quick
to thank programme staff in the speeches that followed the landing.
"I want everybody who was involved in this to feel incredibly proud of what you did
and what your role was," he said.
"Like me, [the crew of Atlantis] got to do the flying but we owe an incredible debt of
gratitude to the thousands, literally tens of thousands, of folks all around the country
who made all this possible."

Not least because: ~の理由だけでなく (プログラムの終了により多くの人々が職を失うこともあるがそれだけではなく複雑な気持ちでアトランティスの帰還を迎えた。)
Mindful of this: giving thought and care or attention to something /somebody~に配慮して。
Incredibly proud of: (incrediblyを使っていることに注目)

The orbiter programme does not officially end for a month, but even then it is likely
to take a couple of years to close all activities, such as the archiving of decades of
shuttle engineering data.
For Atlantis, its retirement will be spent as a static display at the Kennedy visitor
The Discovery and Endeavour shuttles, which made their final flights earlier this
year, will go to the Air and Space Museum's Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia and the
California Science Center in Los Angeles, respectively.

Its retirement will be spent as~:引退後は~として過ごす。
Static: not moving or changing, stationary

Nasa hopes to invest money saved from shuttle operations in a new spaceship and
rocket that can take humans beyond the ISS to destinations such as the Moon,
asteroids and Mars.
The conical ship, known as Orion, has already been defined and is in an advanced
stage of development. The rocket, on the other hand, is still an unknown quantity.
The US Congress has told the agency what its minimum capabilities should be.
However, the agency is currently struggling to put those specifications into a
concept it says can be built to the timeline and budget specified by the politicians.
It promises to detail the rocket's baseline design before the summer is out.

Asteroids: any of many small planets revolving round the sun, especially between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.
The conical ship:cone shaped ship
Before the summer is out: before the summer ends.

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