At lunch time today (well lunch time in the UK anyway), people from all over the world watched as another history was made. STS-134 successfully launched into the skies above Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.
Endeavour, which was built to replace the ill-fated Challenger, is now well on the way to the International Space Station where it should dock on Wednesday.
The STS-134 crew members are Commander Mark Kelly, Pilot Gregory H. Johnson and Mission Specialists Michael Fincke, Greg Chamitoff, Andrew Feustel and European Space Agency astronaut Roberto Vittori.
During the 14-day mission, Endeavour is delivering the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) and spare parts including two S-band communications antennas, a high-pressure gas tank and additional spare parts for Dextre.
Thank you NASA for creating NASA TV so I could watch Endeavour take off… a breathtaking sight I’ll never get to see with my own eyes.
[images all screen grabs from NASA tv as the launch took place]
Once Endeavour returns on 1st June there is just one Shuttle mission left – Atlantis, which should launch in July.
You can follow NASA on twitter – and it’s well worth doing as their Astronauts tweet from space, including loads of photos of amazing views we’d never get to see otherwise.