NASA allowed us to get breathtakingly close and document Endeavour from multiple absolutely awesome vantage points all around the launch pad from top to bottom. We were given access to shoot from the upper reaches of the launch gantry with stunning panoramic vistas of the Florida coastline to the bottom of the launch platform and standing directly beneath the External Tank and adjacent to the Twin Solid Rocket Boosters.
Here is part 1 of my photo album which focuses on the upper levels and includes our visit to the White Room – where the astronauts enter the crew hatch to board the shuttle orbiter to take their seats for the adventure of a lifetime.
With the shuttle era rapidly drawing to a close, NASA has opened up media access in ways not previously allowed so that we can share these rarely seen views of the shuttle with the public.
STS-134 will be the 25th and final flight for Space Shuttle Endeavour. Liftoff is set slated for April 19 with an all veteran crew of six, led by Shuttle Commander Mark Kelly.
Endeavour will haul the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) to orbit and attach this premiere science experiment to the truss structure of the International Space Station. AMS will search for dark matter and antimatter and seak to determine the origin of the universe.
Read more about the STS-134 mission in my prior reports here and here