Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Final Three Shuttle Missions


Last year, I published a post called the Final Five Shuttle Missions, encompassing all the flights that were scheduled for 2010 and 2011. Now that STS-130, 131 and 132 are behind us, we were down to two!

Space Shuttle Program
Yesterday, however... NASA updated the official Launch Calendar to show another flight! Atlantis has been re-added to the fleet. So, I'm amending my list to the final three now... and will keep this updated throughout the year once again. Interestingly, because of all the delays and changes for these flights, they are back in numerical order once again.

Thursday, February 24, 2011
STS-133 scheduled for launch at 4:50 p.m. EST

The last flight of Space Shuttle Discovery. An all-veteran, all-American crew will deliver the Express Logistics Carrier, a Permanent Multi-Purpose Module, Robonaut2, and a SpaceX DragonEye sensor... and two small Lego space shuttles.

On this flight, the mission patch was amended to include Steve Bowen, who replaced astronaut Tim Kopra, recently injured in a bicycling accident.

Space Transportation System
Monday, May 16, 2011
STS-134 scheduled for launch at 8:56 a.m. EDT

The last flight of Space Shuttle Endeavour will deliver a the GLACIER Freeze Module, a Logistics Carrier, a high-pressure gas tank, micro-meteoroid debris shields, and an Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer to the ISS. One spacewalk is planned to mount the AMS to the integrated truss structure.

Friday, July 8, 2011
STS-135 scheduled for launch at 11:26 a.m. EDT

The last flight of Space Shuttle Atlantis is the final mission of the Shuttle program, which began service in 1981. She will deliver a Multi-Purpose Logistics Module and Lightweight Multi-Purpose Carrier. No crew has yet been selected and EVA activity has yet to be announced. Stay tuned!

This final mission will mark the 135th flight of the Space Shuttle Orbiter, the 37th Shuttle trip to the ISS, and the 166th American manned launch.


Jake said...

Retirement postponed. It's like the shuttle program is turning into Brett Favre. Not that I'm complaining...about the additional shuttle flight....or any photos I have seen of the shuttle.

Sincerely though, this posting is adding to my sentimental feelings about the shuttle program.

Amnon I. Govrin said...

Now I can say I got to see the first last launch of Atlantis :-)

PillowNaut said...

Brett Favre, LOL!! Good one. And Amnon, I thought about that too -- all the people who thought they would go into the record books as teh "last flight of atlantis" or the "Final shuttle flight" -- all of that will have to be... um, edited now.

Ah well, you never know. If you have time to get out there, you might still see the final flight of Atlantis.

Makes me wonder if the shuttles will be like KISS though... didn't they have like nine farewell tours?? ;)

Suzanne said...

I will definitely look into making the trip down to see at least ONE shuttle launch. A friend of mine saw one of the Apollo launches and said that it was amazing. The entire ground shook, miles away!

fishofdeath said...

Which mission is the one Mark Kelly is supposed to head?

PillowNaut said...

Hey dude... Kelly was supposed to command STS-134, but that is looking kinda up-in-the-air. NASA named Frederick Sturckow as backup commander, but I suppose it will depend on how well his wife recuperates. Tons of folks pulling for her!!