Space shuttle Endeavour is scheduled to launch February 25, 2011, at 4:04 p.m. (EST). The 134th space shuttle launch is expected to be the last flight of a space shuttle. The latest launch news is posted at NASA’s mission pages for the space station.
Endeavour will deliver spare parts to the International Space Station, including communication antennas and debris shields. The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS), a cosmic ray particle physics detector, will further research into the origin and structure of the universe. The AMS has a price tag of $1.5 billion. The mission is scheduled to last ten days and land at Kennedy Space Center.
Astronaut Mark E. Kelly will command the flight. This will be his fourth space flight. He logged 38 days of space flight during his previous space travel. He and his wife, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords of Tucson, Arizona, have two children.
NASA astronauts will travel to the International Space Station aboard Russian Soyuz spaceships and commercial spaceships after the space shuttle program closes.
Only one space shuttle launch will precede the last launch. Space shuttle Discovery is scheduled to launch November 1, 2010, at 4:40 p.m. (EDT). It will deliver the Permanent Multipurpose Module, the Express Logistics Carrier 4 and important spare parts to the International Space Station.
The best places to watch the launches are mapped at the Places around Florida launch viewing map.
There was speculation by the ISS manager and a Russian Federal Space Agency that the space shuttle Atlantis might be launched in 2011 to provide parts for the ISS, but that launch has not been funded. Instead, plans are being formulated to reconfigure Kennedy Space Center as a launch site for a variety of national and commercial space flights.