Amazing Time-Lapse Video of Space Shuttle Discovery

Article written: 20 May , 2010
Updated: 22 Jan , 2016
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UPDATE: Sorry, but the video includes an annoying loud commercial that starts up automatically every time the page loads on UT, but you should really watch this cool video here. Read about it below, though, first!

This is incredible! Smithsonian Air & Space photographers Scott Andrews, Stan Jirman and Philip Scott Andrews created a unique time-lapse video (at the request of shuttle commander Alan Poindexter) from from thousands of individual frames, and they condense six weeks of painstaking work into three minutes, 52 seconds (read here how they did it). The video quickly chronicles the processing of Discovery for the STS-131 mission, and starts at the Orbiter Processing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, then goes on to the Vehicle Assembly Building, (the video of how the shuttle is hoisted into a vertical position and lowered onto its external fuel tank is absolutely amazing). Then it’s off to the pad for launch, and you even get to see a quick glimpse of Discovery as it lands. This is the shuttle and mission for which I was able to see much of the processing and pre-launch events, so I found it especially meaningful, but it is even more poignant since the end of the shuttle program is quickly approaching.

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5 Responses

  1. hal10000 says

    Wow, awesome video! Thanks, Nancy!

  2. Member
    Aqua says

    Gawd that Vehicle Assembly Building is SOOO huge! I was surprised to see that the shuttle had to be angled to clear the structure as I had never seen that view before – but then again the VAB was built for the much thinner (though taller) Apollo/Saturn rocket stack.

  3. Kevin says

    When they were lifting the shuttle I was like “don’t drop it!”

    Yakkity Sax would make this video greater. 🙂

    Thanks, Nancy!

  4. Paul Eaton-Jones says

    Seeing the shuttle suspended by those two arms almost made it look like a toy. That crane is amazing.

  5. xrayexplorer says

    Ok, this is the coolest thing I have seen in a long time. The flyby of the shuttle over head at the end was totally unexpected and the icing on the cake so to speak.

    Great job guys.

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