Space Shuttle Endeavour Lands, Atlantis Steps Up to the Plate for Final Flight
June 1, 2011 11:32 AM
comment(s) - last by
Space shuttle Endeavour landing
Atlantis to embark on its final flight July 8
is in the midst of retiring its space shuttle fleet, and of the three remaining operational orbiters, two have
and the last is ready for its final mission.
In February of this year, NASA sent
space shuttle Discovery
on its final flight before retirement. Discovery was first launched in 1984, and embarked on its 39th and final flight on February 24. It was one of the remaining three operational orbiters in NASA's space shuttle fleet; the other two are space shuttle's Endeavour and Atlantis.
Space shuttle Endeavour, which made its first flight in 1992, was due to embark on its final launch on April 29 last month, but had to reschedule due to a broken set of heaters. Endeavour finally made its
last flight on May 16
, which was its 25th mission. The mission was completed this morning when Endeavour landed safely at the Kennedy Space Center at 2:35 a.m.
"It's great to be back here at the Kennedy Space Center," said Mark Kelly, mission commander. "It's great to bring Endeavour back in great shape. Looks like it's ready to go do another mission. But this is going to be the last flight."
Endeavour's 16-day mission was scheduled to retrieve old experiments, put new ones in place, lubricate parts and refill tanks at the
International Space Station
. In addition to Cmdr. Mark Kelly, the crew consisted of pilot Gregory H. Johnson, mission specialists Michael Fincke, Andrew Feustel and Greg Chamitoff, and European Space Agency astronaut Roberto Vittori.
Kelly's wife, U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who suffered a gunshot wound to the head in the Tuscon, Arizona mass shooting earlier this year, was unable to attend the Endeavour's landing due to a recent surgery to replace a piece of her skull. There is a 14-day time frame after surgery where the risk of infection is at its highest point.
While in space, Endeavour's crew wore blue rubber bracelets that said "Peace, Love, Gabby" in honor of Giffords.
The landing marked a joyous and emotional event for the crew as they performed the tradition of inspecting the spaceship on Runway 15 at the Kennedy Space Center.
"It's sad to see her land for the last time, but she really had a great legacy," said Kelly. "It is really, really an incredible ship."
Two down, one to go. Now that Discovery and Endeavour
, Atlantis is the last to fly, and is all ready to go. Atlantis arrived at its Kennedy Space Center launch pad less than an hour after Endeavour landed. The scheduled final flight for Atlantis is July 8.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: the end of an era
6/2/2011 2:04:48 AM
dude was totally wearing pink lipstick
“We do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone.” -- Steve Jobs
NASA Bids Farewell to Mars Rover "Spirit"
May 25, 2011, 12:50 PM
Space Shuttle Endeavour Blasts Off for Final Mission
May 16, 2011, 8:48 AM
NASA Administrator Announces Mars Mission; Stresses Importance of ISS
April 8, 2011, 7:30 AM
Space Shuttle Discovery Embarks on Last Flight Today
February 24, 2011, 12:09 PM
NASA Finds "Habitable Zone" Planet Sized Similar to Earth
April 18, 2014, 3:13 PM
SpaceX Leases Apollo 11 Launchpad for 20 Years
April 16, 2014, 1:52 PM
New IPCC Report Says Climate Change Can be Warded Off Affordably
April 14, 2014, 4:44 PM
A-10 Warthog May Live to Fight Another Day with Support from Lawmakers
April 14, 2014, 9:41 AM
It's Very Likely Neanderthals and Humans Had Sex, Produced Offspring
April 10, 2014, 8:40 PM
U.S. Navy's Prototype Laser Weapon to Begin Shipboard Testing in Late Summer
April 8, 2014, 8:42 AM
Most Popular Articles
A Bug's Life: Female Cave Bugs Have Penises, Penetrate Males for Three Days
April 17, 2014, 7:20 PM
Quick Note: Toyota Attempts to Erase “Boring” Image with ’15 Camry SE Hybrid
April 16, 2014, 11:36 AM
HTC Hires Former Samsung Marketing Chief Who Developed "Galaxy" Brand
April 18, 2014, 6:00 PM
Project Moonshine: Google's Plan to Flatten Android App Icons Leaks
April 16, 2014, 1:46 PM
Microsoft Announces the First Steps in Its "Universal Apps" Program
April 15, 2014, 7:59 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
Tesla vs. BMW: Who Has the Safer EV?
Feb 1, 2014, 2:56 PM
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
Global Cyber Espionage Concerns Reveal Growing Cyber Armies
Nov 29, 2013, 11:04 AM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information