Thursday, May 13, 2010

Atlantis Revealed on Launch Pad 39A

The countdown continues toward the scheduled launch of space shuttle Atlantis on its STS-132 mission. At NASA Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39A, the rotating service structure has been pulled away from Atlantis in preparation for liftoff Friday at 2:20 p.m. EDT.

"We've had a very clean countdown so far and we're currently on schedule, and we're not working on any issues," NASA Test Director Jeremy Graeber said Thursday morning.

During the 12-day mission, Atlantis and the mission's six astronauts are delivering an Integrated Cargo Carrier and a Russian-built Mini Research Module to the International Space Station.

Image above: At NASA Kennedy Space Center's Launch Pad 39A, space shuttle Atlantis is revealed Thursday evening after retraction of the pad's rotating service structure. Image credit: NASA/Jack Pfaller

According to STS-132 Weather Officer Todd McNamara, the primary launch weather concern is a low cloud ceiling. But the forecast is good overall, calling for a 70 percent chance of favorable conditions at launch time.

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