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RUSSIANS TWEAK SPACE-STATION MODULE

Russian space officials gave the first module of the international space station a routine tweak Saturday to push it into higher orbit and convened a meeting on Earth to map out its future.

Flight controllers fired one of the module's two maneuvering engines to raise it to an orbit about 157 miles in space, the station's public affairs office said.

The 24-ton core module, called Zarya, or Sunrise, lifted off Friday from the Baikonur launch pad in Kazakstan into an initial orbit 125 miles above Earth.

Zarya is to serve as a space tugboat in the early stages of the international project, providing propulsion, power and communications. It will fly alone for two weeks before a rendezvous with the American space shuttle Endeavour, to be launched Dec. 3 carrying the Unity connecting module.

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