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Photo Gallery: Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

May 19, 2011 — Space shuttle Atlantis was hoisted into place Wednesday with the external tank and twin solid rocket boosters that will launch it on its final flight into space and the last mission for NASA's 30-year shuttle program.

Now inside the expansive confines of NASA's Vehicle Assembly Building at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida following a move from its processing hangar on Tuesday, Atlantis was fitted with a metal sling and lifted by crane from the floor of the transfer aisle to the high reaches of the 52-story building before being lowered into place beside the orange-brown tank and two white boosters.

Workers will secure the orbiter and its flight components prior to rolling out the full stack to Pad 39A, now scheduled to begin on the evening of May 31. Atlantis will liftoff to the International Space Station on the program's 135th and final mission, STS-135, in July.

 


Photos: collectSPACE / Robert Z. Pearlman

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight   Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight   Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight   Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight   Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight   Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight   Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight   Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

Atlantis lifted for last space shuttle flight

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