Astronauts at International Space Station Begin Construction Work

Astronauts on the latest shuttle mission to the international space station have quickly gotten down to business.
Mission specialist Dave Williams emerges from the hatch of space shuttle Endeavor at the beginning of the mission's fourth spacewalk. (NASA TV)
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Johnson Space Center, Houston (AP) Astronauts on the latest shuttle mission to the International Space Station have quickly gotten down to business.

The crew of Endeavour arrived overnight. After exchanging hugs and handshakes with the crew, they started unloading gear and parts they'll need for some ambitious construction projects. They'll be setting up a Canadian robot in the first of five spacewalks outside the station starting tonight. The device will help future astronauts on spacewalks and eventually take over some of the dangerous outside work.

Tomorrow, the crew will be attaching a storage compartment for a Japanese science lab to be sent up in may.

NASA experts, in the meantime, will be examining detailed photos of the outside of the shuttle. They want to make sure it didn't sustain any liftoff damage that would jeopardize a safe landing at the end of the 16-day mission.