Friday, July 8, 2011

Space Shuttle, Every Shuttle Launch in 135 Seconds, Shuttle Video

In honor of the final launch of NASA's shuttle program, we've condensed video of 135 launches into 135 seconds

(Sentimental journey, Atlantis lifts off the final shuttle flight)

(135 Liftoffs in 135 seconds)

Atlantis' journey to the International Space Station is NASA's 135th and final mission in the space shuttle program, which began 30 years ago. Tune in to a special "CNN Presents: Beyond Atlantis" tonight at 8 ET for a look at what's next for NASA.

Kennedy Space Center (CNN) -- The space shuttle Atlantis lifted off Friday morning on the final mission of America's 30-year space-shuttle program, a thunderously poignant moment for fans and veterans of the space program.

Some of the thousands of people who gathered to watch the launch chanted "U.S.A." Others shed tears as Atlantis roared aloft atop its powerful rockets on what a NASA commentator called a "sentimental journey into history."

"Godspeed, Atlantis," read a sign help up by a saluting member of the ground crew whose job it was to seal the shuttle's doors for the last time.

The four-member crew blasted off on a 12-day mission just before 11:30 a.m. The four -- all shuttle veterans -- are on their way to deliver supplies to the International Space Station.

The possibility of storms had raised doubt about whether the launch would take place as planned, but NASA gave the shuttle a "go" for launch a few minutes before liftoff. With the countdown nearing the 30-second mark, the launch had to be delayed briefly to investigate whether a vent arm had properly retracted, which it had.

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