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Update from the Kennedy Space Center

by George Murphy on July 11, 2011

I’ve been out at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida since last week, covering the launch and upcoming landing of the last Space Shuttle, Atlantis. I’ll be putting together some comprehensive posts in the near future on this, but won’t be able to publish extensively until I finish up my current collaborations with the Press Democrat newspaper. In the meantime, I can share a few images that were already included in a Press Democrat photo blog. Click on the images to see a larger version.

I look forward to updating this gallery soon with more information about the events out at KSC and how the images were made. Until then, I hope you enjoy these photograph.



The Space Shuttle Atlantis sits perched atop Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida the evening before it’s 12th and final flight into near Earth space. A throng of news media stand ready as they wait for the crew of Atlantis to emerge from the Operations and Checkout Building where they will enter the infamous Astrovan, which will take them to Pad 39A and their waiting spaceship, Atlantis. The modified Airstream Astrovan has only one job–that of transporting the astronauts to the launch pad. The current Astrovan has been in service 24 years. The crew of Atlantis pose for photographers, but focus their attention and appreciatiion on the crowds of NASA and contractor employees and families who have come to see them off. On the left are Rex Walheim and Sandy Magnus, mission specialists; To their right are Doug Hurley, pilot; and Chris Ferguson, the commander of the Shuttle Atlantis. STS-135 Commander Chris Ferguson flashes a ‘V’ sign to someone in the crowd The Space Shuttle Atlantis lifts off from Pad 39A despite earlier predictions of foul weather. The Space Shuttle Atlantis leaps from Pad 39A at 11:29 am Eastern time, on its way to one last rendezvous with the International Space Station, as a crowd of news media looks on for the Press Site at the Kennedy Space Center.

Vapor caps begin to form at the leading edge of the the solid rocket boosters, as the Shuttle Atlantis reaches supersonic speed.

One response to “Update from the Kennedy Space Center”

  1. Elle Chan says:

    Beautiful photographs George. Can’t wait to see more of them sometime!

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