Kennedy Space Center, May 14th, 2010. I was privileged to travel to the Kennedy Space Center, to watch the launch of Atlantis, on what was then, the final "scheduled" flight of the orbiter (STS-132). This video is my homage to the shuttle program, through the in-depth experience of a single orbiter launch. I believe we should be thankful for the Atlantis orbiter, all her astronauts, the countless NASA staff who made her fly, and the American people who created a space vehicle of extraordinary power and grace.
This footage incorporates numerous camera views from the ground, the footage I took during launch, and video and audio from NASA showing the orbiter stack itself, during takeoff and flight -- in order to experience the preparation and the resulting eight and a half minute exhilarating ride into space.
In places, the timeline of the actual events has been extended slightly to allow us to see different viewpoints of the same moment, and better experience the amazing feat of launching a spacecraft into orbit.
Enjoy the ride!
MORE BACKGROUND ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
After this flight, Atlantis was processed and prepared to fly one last time... this time as "on-call" STS-335, which would remain flight-ready, should either of the remaining two orbiters flights require a rescue mission.
A rescue flight was not needed and Congress, in a rare moment of clarity, appropriated enough money to extend the program to allow the already "flight ready" Atlantis to launch one last time and to become the last shuttle mission of the Shuttle Program, as STS-135.
Atlantis now has a home at the Kennedy Space Center.
Errata: an editing error at the end of the video states the launch was 2012, rather than the correct year, 2010.
MUSIC TRACKS (In order of appearance) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 1) Band Of Brothers Suite Two, Band Of Brothers, (Michael Kamen) 2) Rise, The Space Between Us, (Craig Armstrong) 3) After The Storm, The Space Between Us, (Craig Armstrong) 4) After Antietam, Glory Soundtrack, (James Horner) 5) Now We Are Free (Juba's Mix), Gladiator: More Music From The 6) Motion Picture, (Hanz Zimmer and Lisa Gerrard) 7) Hymn, The Space Between Us, (Craig Armstrong)