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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – Led by the Merritt Island High School color guard and the Titusville High School band, the space shuttle Atlantis is transported along NASA Causeway at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on its 10-mile journey to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex where it will be put on public display.      As part of transition and retirement of the Space Shuttle Program, Atlantis is to be displayed at Kennedy's Visitor Complex beginning in the summer of 2013. Over the course of its 26-year career, Atlantis traveled 125,935,769 miles during 307 days in space over 33 missions. For more information, visit http://www.nasa.gov/transition Photo credit: NASA/ Tony Gray KSC-2012-6039

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – Led by the Merritt Island High School color guard and the Titusville High School band, the space shuttle Atlantis is transported along NASA Causeway at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on its 10-mile journey to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex where it will be put on public display. As part of transition and retirement of the Space Shuttle Program, Atlantis is to be displayed at Kennedy's Visitor Complex beginning in the summer of 2013. Over the course of its 26-year career, Atlantis traveled 125,935,769 miles during 307 days in space over 33 missions. For more information, visit http://www.nasa.gov/transition Photo credit: NASA/ Tony Gray KSC-2012-6039

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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – Led by the Merritt Island High School color guard and the Titusville High School band, the space shuttle Atlantis is transported along NASA Causeway at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on its 10-mile journey to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex where it will be put on public display. As part of transition and retirement of the Space Shuttle Program, Atlantis is to be displayed at Kennedy's Visitor Complex beginning in the summer of 2013. Over the course of its 26-year career, Atlantis traveled 125,935,769 miles during 307 days in space over 33 missions. For more information, visit http://www.nasa.gov/transition Photo credit: NASA/ Tony Gray

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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02/11/2012
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Kennedy Space Center, FL
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NASA
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