Space Exploration

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Saturday, September 26, 2020

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 Commander Chris Ferguson eased Atlantis onto the runway at 5:57 a.m. EDT (0957 GMT), ending a 5.2 million-mile (8.4 million-km) journey and closing a key chapter in human space flight history.Atlantis is the last of NASA's three space shuttles to be retired.  After this final mission, the Shuttle Atlantis will go on display at the Kennedy Center's visitor's complex in Cape Canaveral, Florida.

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"Mission complete, Houston," Ferguson Radioed to Mission Control.

The shuttle's primary payload was an Italian-built cargo hauler named Raffaello, which was loaded with 8,640 pounds (3,920 kg) of food, clothing, supplies and science equipment for the space station. Additional gear was packed in the shuttle's crew cabin.  One spacewalk took place during Atlantis' mission, although it was conducted by NASA's two resident space station astronauts, rather than the shuttle crew.

 

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CAPE CANAVERAL - Space shuttle Endeavour swooped in from the darkness and landed at Kennedy Space Center early Wednesday June 1, 2011, rolling to a stop at its home port for the final time. "It's sad to see her land for the last time, but she really has a great legacy," Commander Mark Kelly radioed after easing Endeavour onto the runway. The relatively rare overnight landing capped a two-week mission that included the delivery of a $2-billion particle physics experiment to the international space station. But the mission objectives were largely relegated to the background for the high-profile flight.

Endeavour's Final Mission

 

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NASA: Docked Endeavour at ISS Through a Fish-Eye Lens

"We got the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer installed, which is really a remarkable thing for physics and for science," said Kelly. "That sensor's already collecting massive amounts of data and we're looking forward to hearing what those discoveries are."  

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Austronaut Douglas Wheelock

Astronaut Douglas Wheelock who is currently aboard the International Space Station shares pictures of the Earth he snaps with the world through Twitter. Wheelock has been posting impressive photos of the Earth and some of his thoughts ever since he moved into the space station in June, five months after it got Internet access.

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telescope

The Hubble Space Telescope was deployed from the Space shuttle Discovery during STS-31 on April 25, 1990. Since then, there have been about a dozen servicing missions that continued to upgrade the telescope's scientific instruments and operational systems. Hubble reached a major milestone, its 26th anniversary in orbit, on April 24, 2016.

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After 27 years and 39 flights, Discovery's wheels rolled to a stop for the very last time under the warm sun at the Florida spaceport's Shuttle Landing Facility,on Wednesday, March 9, 2011 at 11:57 a.m. EST

(16:57 GMT), capping a busy 13-day mission to the International Space Station.

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