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From inside the STS-129 NASA Tweetup Twitter tent:

Astronaut Scott Kelly (@StationCDRKelly), twin brother of astronaut Mike Kelly (@ShuttleCDRKelly) answers questions while a live NASA TV view of Space Shuttle Atlantis (STS-129) with the External Tank and White Room clearly visible. Less than an hour before launch!

From www.lauderdalechristmas.com/nasa-shuttle-launch.htm -- "This is the best site to view a shuttle launch, because it is the closest official viewing area that a human can get to, only 3 miles from the launch pad. That's as close as you want to be to a liftoff. The sound will kill you 400 feet away from the launch pad. At 800 feet away, you'll wish you were dead. This press site is the location from which you see all the video on the news, or the photos on the news sites after every space shuttle launch. This is also a famous historic site, because of the large digital clock on the ground, and the flag pole there. In fact the press site flag pole and clock are included in the U.S. National Register of Historic Places."

 

THANK YOU TO NASA for allowing ordinary people like Jan, I and the other ~98 folks from around the U.S. and world this amazing opportunity to be a part of history and experience the STS-129 NASA Tweetup!

 

In photograph: @rockteacherjan & @ageekmom (me)

The Discovery space shuttleSTS-133 mission took off successfully from the Kennedy Space Center on her last mission in space, headed for the International Space Station to deliver the Leonardo multipurpose module and an ExPress Logistic Carrier.

The crew of the Discovery STS-133 mission are Steven W. Lindsey, commander, Eric A. Boe, pilot, and mission specialists Benjamin Alvin Drew Jr., Stephen B. Bowen, Michael R. Barratt, Nicole P. Stott. Also Robonaut 2, a multipurpose robot that will be used to conduct repairs to the space station and other tasks, will be carried to the ISS by the Discovery.

The Discovery will also conduct a test of SpaceX's DragonEye flash sensor which is slated to be used by commercial Dragon space craft to approach and dock with the ISS during their missions to the space station, hopefully later this decade.

Stephen Bowen and Alvin Drew will conduct two space walks to install enhancements to the ISS.

Discovery STS-133 was originally slated for launch last September. But numerous technical glitches pushed back the last flight of the space shuttle Discovery to late February.

The Discovery orbiter was the third of NASA's space shuttle fleet, having been delivered to the Kennedy Space Center in November of 1983. Discovery's first flight, STS 41-D, was launched on August 30th, 1984, and deployed three communications satellites from the shuttle payload bay.

Discovery was also the space shuttle that deployed the Hubble Space Telescope during the flight of STS-31 in April, 1990, and performed the second and third Hubble servicing missions, on STS-82 in February, 1997 and on STS-103 in December, 1999 respectively. Discovery also launched the Ulysses solar polar orbiter on the mission of STS-41 in October, 1990.

Discovery has carried numerous satellites beyond the Earth, carried experiments, and has made supply and module runs to the International Space Station during her long career.

Discovery also had the honor of being the first space shuttle to fly after disaster struck her sister space shuttle orbiters, STS-26 in 1988 after the Challenger disaster and STS 114 in July, 2005 after the destruction of the Columbia.

Discovery was named after two sailing ships, one piloted by Henry Hudson in his search for the Northwest Passage in the 16th Century then other by James Cook in his exploration of the Pacific in the 18th Century.

After her mission, Discovery will be placed on permanent display at the Smithsonian's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center just outside Washington DC, replacing the Enterprise drop test article.

The Discovery space shuttleSTS-133 mission took off successfully from the Kennedy Space Center on her last mission in space, headed for the International Space Station to deliver the Leonardo multipurpose module and an ExPress Logistic Carrier.

The crew of the Discovery STS-133 mission are Steven W. Lindsey, commander, Eric A. Boe, pilot, and mission specialists Benjamin Alvin Drew Jr., Stephen B. Bowen, Michael R. Barratt, Nicole P. Stott. Also Robonaut 2, a multipurpose robot that will be used to conduct repairs to the space station and other tasks, will be carried to the ISS by the Discovery.

The Discovery will also conduct a test of SpaceX's DragonEye flash sensor which is slated to be used by commercial Dragon space craft to approach and dock with the ISS during their missions to the space station, hopefully later this decade.

Stephen Bowen and Alvin Drew will conduct two space walks to install enhancements to the ISS.

Discovery STS-133 was originally slated for launch last September. But numerous technical glitches pushed back the last flight of the space shuttle Discovery to late February.

The Discovery orbiter was the third of NASA's space shuttle fleet, having been delivered to the Kennedy Space Center in November of 1983. Discovery's first flight, STS 41-D, was launched on August 30th, 1984, and deployed three communications satellites from the shuttle payload bay.

Discovery was also the space shuttle that deployed the Hubble Space Telescope during the flight of STS-31 in April, 1990, and performed the second and third Hubble servicing missions, on STS-82 in February, 1997 and on STS-103 in December, 1999 respectively. Discovery also launched the Ulysses solar polar orbiter on the mission of STS-41 in October, 1990.

Discovery has carried numerous satellites beyond the Earth, carried experiments, and has made supply and module runs to the International Space Station during her long career.

Discovery also had the honor of being the first space shuttle to fly after disaster struck her sister space shuttle orbiters, STS-26 in 1988 after the Challenger disaster and STS 114 in July, 2005 after the destruction of the Columbia.

Discovery was named after two sailing ships, one piloted by Henry Hudson in his search for the Northwest Passage in the 16th Century then other by James Cook in his exploration of the Pacific in the 18th Century.

After her mission, Discovery will be placed on permanent display at the Smithsonian's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center just outside Washington DC, replacing the Enterprise drop test article.

1/650 scale classic Enterprise model by AMT with lights and motorized nacelles.

NASA's workhorse Space Shuttle Discovery lifts off from Kennedy Space Center on the way to the International Space Station on its historic final mission on February 24, 2011. STS-133 is the final mission for Discovery as NASA begins retiring the entire shuttle fleet.

Nothing great about this shot, just thought it was very cool that you can still clearly make out the orbiter,external tank and twin solid rocket boosters falling away. At this moment the shuttle is 29 miles down range and around 146,000 ft. in altitude!

Space Shuttle Atlantis and its seven-member STS-125 crew head toward Earth orbit and rendezvous with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Liftoff was on time at 2:01 p.m. EDT on May 11, 2009, from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center.

 

Onboard were astronauts Scott Altman, commander; Gregory C. Johnson, pilot; Michael Good, Megan McArthur, John Grunsfeld, Mike Massimino, and Andrew Feustel, all mission specialists.

 

Atlantis' flight included five spacewalks that refurbished and upgraded the telescope with state-of-the-art science instruments that expanded Hubble's capabilities and extended its operational lifespan. The payload included the Wide Field Camera 3, a Fine Guidance Sensor, and the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph.

 

Credit: NASA

Liftoff shot from Titusville, FL

 

After a smooth countdown, Space Shuttle Atlantis begins the STS-117 mission with a spectacular climb toward orbit.

 

Space Shuttle Mission STS-117

 

Orbiter: Atlantis

Mission: Space Station Assembly Building - 13A

Primary Payload: S3/S4 Truss

Launch Date: June 8

Launch Time: 7:38:04 p.m. EDT

Launch Pad: 39A

Mission Duration: 11 days

Inclination/Altitude: 51.6 degrees/122 nautical miles

Explore/Interestingness: #5 on Saturday, July 7, 2007

 

View On Black

 

Space Shuttle Atlantis and its seven-member STS-125 crew head toward Earth orbit and rendezvous with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Liftoff was on time at 2:01 p.m. EDT on May 11, 2009, from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center.

 

Onboard were astronauts Scott Altman, commander; Gregory C. Johnson, pilot; Michael Good, Megan McArthur, John Grunsfeld, Mike Massimino, and Andrew Feustel, all mission specialists.

 

Atlantis' flight included five spacewalks that refurbished and upgraded the telescope with state-of-the-art science instruments that expanded Hubble's capabilities and extended its operational lifespan. The payload included the Wide Field Camera 3, a Fine Guidance Sensor, and the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph.

 

Credit: NASA

Space Shuttle Atlantis and its seven-member STS-125 crew head toward Earth orbit and rendezvous with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Liftoff was on time at 2:01 p.m. EDT on May 11, 2009, from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center.

 

Onboard were astronauts Scott Altman, commander; Gregory C. Johnson, pilot; Michael Good, Megan McArthur, John Grunsfeld, Mike Massimino, and Andrew Feustel, all mission specialists.

 

Atlantis' flight included five spacewalks that refurbished and upgraded the telescope with state-of-the-art science instruments that expanded Hubble's capabilities and extended its operational lifespan. The payload included the Wide Field Camera 3, a Fine Guidance Sensor, and the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph.

 

Credit: NASA

I went up to Titusville today to watch the shuttle launch. This was the first time I was able to go up and watch from this close and it was definitely an amazing experience!

 

They are retiring the shuttle Discovery and this was the last time it will ever launch so it was awesome to be able to witness history!

 

www.photosbychrismartin.com

Yesterday's launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis, as seen from about 7-8mi away. That was as close as I could get without a press pass. Next time I'll apply for a press pass ahead of time or bring longer glass.

 

The sea breeze was so heavy at launch time that I had to add a weight to the tripod's center column hook and press down on the top of the lens lens with my left hand, directly above the tripod mount point, to help stabilize the image. Being the first launch of the season, the traffic was so heavy afterwards, it took almost four hours to make it back to basecamp in Orlando from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

Space Shuttle Atlantis and its seven-member STS-125 crew head toward Earth orbit and rendezvous with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Liftoff was on time at 2:01 p.m. EDT on May 11, 2009, from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center.

 

Onboard were astronauts Scott Altman, commander; Gregory C. Johnson, pilot; Michael Good, Megan McArthur, John Grunsfeld, Mike Massimino, and Andrew Feustel, all mission specialists.

 

Atlantis' flight included five spacewalks that refurbished and upgraded the telescope with state-of-the-art science instruments that expanded Hubble's capabilities and extended its operational lifespan. The payload included the Wide Field Camera 3, a Fine Guidance Sensor, and the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph.

 

Credit: NASA

Space Shuttle Atlantis and its seven-member STS-125 crew head toward Earth orbit and rendezvous with NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. Liftoff was on time at 2:01 p.m. EDT on May 11, 2009, from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center.

 

Onboard were astronauts Scott Altman, commander; Gregory C. Johnson, pilot; Michael Good, Megan McArthur, John Grunsfeld, Mike Massimino, and Andrew Feustel, all mission specialists.

 

Atlantis' flight included five spacewalks that refurbished and upgraded the telescope with state-of-the-art science instruments that expanded Hubble's capabilities and extended its operational lifespan. The payload included the Wide Field Camera 3, a Fine Guidance Sensor, and the Cosmic Origins Spectrograph.

 

Credit: NASA

NASA's Space Shuttle Atlantis "flexes it's muscles on final time" as she roars into the Heavens as she lifts off for one final time. This mission ( STS-135 ) marks the very last Space Shuttle mission. When Atlantis lands in a few days it will officially mark the end of the Space Shuttle era.

 

It was an amazing honor to be present at the NASA Press Site to record this historic moment...but like most of you, I grew up with the Space Shuttle and it was very sad knowing this was the last time anyone would ever see this awe-inspiring sight.

for the Shuttle to go up.

Along the Atlantic shore, just south of Flagler Beach, looking South.

This was a night-time launch (5am) in February (2010).

 

Along with the roar and the light, what struck me was how far mankind has progressed technologically in the last two centuries. At Waterloo in 1815, Napolean and Wellington couldn't move their troops any faster or get their messages any faster than Alexander the Great in 330 BC (obviously the weapons had progressed).

 

Today we're watching space shots...200 years is really only three lifetimes ago.... I'm in my late 60's; my grandmother, whom I knew well, was born in 1881; as a young girl, she certainly knew people who were alive in 1815, ..........So Waterloo, with its 2000 year old logistics, is not really all that long ago.

view from Melbourne FL

The setting sun colored the lower levels of the vapor trail, but the upper reaches still showed sunshine white

We were lucky enough to see the Space Shuttle Atlantis lift off today, a moment I will never forget, awesome!!!!! Atlantis is on a dangerous journey to fix the Hubble Telescope.

 

We were about 12 miles away and it was very hazy out, I wish it was a little more clear.

view from Melbourne FL

 

The rocket's upper trail dissipated as it reached the higher atmosphere.

The setting sun gave the nice orange and pinkish hue to the lover level.

 

Local trees in my neighbor's yard blocked view of the actual launch stage.

Photograph by Justin W. Moore (www.outdorphoto.com/)

 

Potential future female astronaut demonstrating the "backflip" (Rendezvous Pitch Maneuver) the Space Shuttle orbiter performs for visual inspection just before docking with the International Space Station.

 

---

Freely available for use, particularly for any STEM education, NASA outreach or related activities. Usage: Creative Commons-Attribution --

 

REQUIRED ATTRIBUTION (Web address is required, but active hyperlink is OPTIONAL):

Justin W. Moore (www.outdoorphoto.com/)

The Discovery space shuttleSTS-133 mission took off successfully from the Kennedy Space Center on her last mission in space, headed for the International Space Station to deliver the Leonardo multipurpose module and an ExPress Logistic Carrier.

The crew of the Discovery STS-133 mission are Steven W. Lindsey, commander, Eric A. Boe, pilot, and mission specialists Benjamin Alvin Drew Jr., Stephen B. Bowen, Michael R. Barratt, Nicole P. Stott. Also Robonaut 2, a multipurpose robot that will be used to conduct repairs to the space station and other tasks, will be carried to the ISS by the Discovery.

The Discovery will also conduct a test of SpaceX's DragonEye flash sensor which is slated to be used by commercial Dragon space craft to approach and dock with the ISS during their missions to the space station, hopefully later this decade.

Stephen Bowen and Alvin Drew will conduct two space walks to install enhancements to the ISS.

Discovery STS-133 was originally slated for launch last September. But numerous technical glitches pushed back the last flight of the space shuttle Discovery to late February.

The Discovery orbiter was the third of NASA's space shuttle fleet, having been delivered to the Kennedy Space Center in November of 1983. Discovery's first flight, STS 41-D, was launched on August 30th, 1984, and deployed three communications satellites from the shuttle payload bay.

Discovery was also the space shuttle that deployed the Hubble Space Telescope during the flight of STS-31 in April, 1990, and performed the second and third Hubble servicing missions, on STS-82 in February, 1997 and on STS-103 in December, 1999 respectively. Discovery also launched the Ulysses solar polar orbiter on the mission of STS-41 in October, 1990.

Discovery has carried numerous satellites beyond the Earth, carried experiments, and has made supply and module runs to the International Space Station during her long career.

Discovery also had the honor of being the first space shuttle to fly after disaster struck her sister space shuttle orbiters, STS-26 in 1988 after the Challenger disaster and STS 114 in July, 2005 after the destruction of the Columbia.

Discovery was named after two sailing ships, one piloted by Henry Hudson in his search for the Northwest Passage in the 16th Century then other by James Cook in his exploration of the Pacific in the 18th Century.

After her mission, Discovery will be placed on permanent display at the Smithsonian's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center just outside Washington DC, replacing the Enterprise drop test article.

The last time we'll see this, probably. It makes me a little sad.

 

STS-133 long after take-off.

Geek HEAVEN, standing ~600 yards away from STS-129 (Space Shuttle Atlantis) the day before launch. Thank you, NASA, for all you do & for the STS-129 NASA Tweetup!

24th February 2011., Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA

  

Discovery launches for the last time heading to re-supply the International Space Station. On its return to Earth it will be donated to a museum.

 

Discovery was the 3rd from last Shuttle mission before the programme was ended

 

Yesterday's launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis, as seen from about 7-8 miles away. That was as close as I could get without a press pass. Next time I'll apply for a press pass ahead of time or bring longer glass.

 

The sea breeze was so strong at launch time that I had to add a weight to the tripod's center column hook and press down on the top of the lens with my left hand, directly above the tripod mount point, to help stabilize the image. Being the first launch of the season, the traffic was so heavy afterwards, it took almost four hours to make it back to basecamp in Orlando from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

2010_05_14 14_26_08 Orlando and Shuttle Launch

I photoshopped this one to get the sky color smooth and pop up the color in the trail (it really is about that bright, but just doesn't come out on the camera. It was a little darker, but this was as close as I could get. I love the light in the window. All in all a very cool evening!

The STS-128 Discovery launched from KSC at 11:59 August 28, 2009. The shot was taken from the VIP site at Banana Creek.

24th February 2011., Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA

  

Discovery launches for the last time heading to re-supply the International Space Station. On its return to Earth it will be donated to a museum.

 

Discovery was the 3rd from last Shuttle mission before the programme was ended

 

Shuttle launch against Mount St. Helen's volcanic eruption, with boys dressed for their manhood ritual and hunt, and a cow, an crane, a cat, and a woman and man from a car wreck in the desolate landscape of Mono Lake.

The final launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis, as seen from Titusville, FL.

 

I went to see the final launch for the Space Shuttle program, EVER. Glad they were able to get the launch on the first attempt.

 

There were A LOT of people on hand, and there were some who said that this was their first shuttle launch in person. For me this was my third viewing it from a nearby town, but this was definitely the best view I've ever had in person. And this was the first time I saw Atlantis launch. My other two times were both Discovery.

Space shuttle Endeavour blasts off from Kennedy Space Center

NASA Administrator Michael Griffin (foreground) watches the launch of the Space Shuttle Endeavour, to get STS-118 underway, from the Launch Control Center on August 8, 2007 at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla. The shuttle lifted off from launch pad 39A at 6:36 p.m. (EDT). Behind and to the right of Administrator Griffin is William Gerstenmaier, NASA Associate Administrator for Space Operations.

Photo Credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls

 

Image Number: JSC2007-E-41601

Date: August 8, 2007

7 minutes after the space shuttle Atlantis lifts off only smoke remains

Shot from Titusville, FL

 

I was quite happy how the launch photos turned out, considering I was 11 miles away and only had 280 mm maximum zoom length. The problem of this setting was that the minimum zoom was 98 mm, too much to get a good shot of the exhaust trail as I took during my first launch. So after the launch I quickly changed lenses and took this wide-angle shot as the smoke trail already started to disappear. Doing the tone-mapping I accidentally loaded the previous settings which I used to generate my gloomy Joshua Tree NP HDRs and I actually liked the result. So here it is...

 

F-Number: f/10, Exposure times: 1/60 sec, 1/250 sec and 1/1000 sec., ISO-200, Focal length: 10 mm

Night launches are always amazing.

 

This is the launch of Space Shuttle Discovery on STS-116 as seen from near the top of Tampa Bay.

 

Even though I missed the first few seconds of the launch while I was trying to get my camera aimed properly, I'm very happy with how this came out. There were some thin clouds, which is why it's segmented like it is.

 

I think it looks better on black.

 

This was one of the most interesting photos of December 9th, 2006.

NASA's Space Shuttle Atlantis roars into the Heavens as she lifts off for the last time. This mission ( STS-135 ) marks the very last Space Shuttle mission. When Atlantis lands in a few days it will officially mark the end of the Space Shuttle era.

 

It was an amazing honor to be present at the NASA Press Site to record this historic moment...but like most of you, I grew up with the Space Shuttle and it was very sad knowing this was the last time anyone would ever see this awe-inspiring sight.

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