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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - In the Space Station Processing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, technicians secure the pump module assembly plate into position onto the Lightweight Multi-Purpose Experiment Support Structure Carrier, or LMC. The module assembly will be used to secure the return of a failed ammonia pump module in shuttle Atlantis' payload bay. Atlantis and its payload are being prepared for the STS-135 mission, which will deliver the Raffaello multipurpose logistics module packed with supplies, logistics and spare parts to the International Space Station. STS-135 is targeted to launch June 28, and will be the last spaceflight for the Space Shuttle Program. Photo credit: NASA/Jack Pfaller KSC-2011-2987

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - In the Space Station Processing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, technicians secure the pump module assembly plate into position onto the Lightweight Multi-Purpose Experiment Support Structure Carrier, or LMC. The module assembly will be used to secure the return of a failed ammonia pump module in shuttle Atlantis' payload bay. Atlantis and its payload are being prepared for the STS-135 mission, which will deliver the Raffaello multipurpose logistics module packed with supplies, logistics and spare parts to the International Space Station. STS-135 is targeted to launch June 28, and will be the last spaceflight for the Space Shuttle Program. Photo credit: NASA/Jack Pfaller KSC-2011-2987

 
 
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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - In the Space Station Processing Facility at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, technicians secure the pump module assembly plate into position onto the Lightweight Multi-Purpose Experiment Support Structure Carrier, or LMC. The module assembly will be used to secure the return of a failed ammonia pump module in shuttle Atlantis' payload bay. Atlantis and its payload are being prepared for the STS-135 mission, which will deliver the Raffaello multipurpose logistics module packed with supplies, logistics and spare parts to the International Space Station. STS-135 is targeted to launch June 28, and will be the last spaceflight for the Space Shuttle Program. Photo credit: NASA/Jack Pfaller

The Space Shuttle program was the United States government's manned launch vehicle program from 1981 to 2011, administered by NASA and officially beginning in 1972. The Space Shuttle system—composed of an orbiter launched with two reusable solid rocket boosters and a disposable external fuel tank— carried up to eight astronauts and up to 50,000 lb (23,000 kg) of payload into low Earth orbit (LEO). When its mission was complete, the orbiter would re-enter the Earth's atmosphere and lands as a glider. Although the concept had been explored since the late 1960s, the program formally commenced in 1972 and was the focus of NASA's manned operations after the final Apollo and Skylab flights in the mid-1970s. It started with the launch of the first shuttle Columbia on April 12, 1981, on STS-1. and finished with its last mission, STS-135 flown by Atlantis, in July 2011.

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22/04/2011
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Kennedy Space Center, FL
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NASA
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