NASA and STS-135 - Atlantis June 28 or July 4

The launch of the final space shuttle mission, Atlantis STS 135, is dependent on the successful launch of Endeavour. With a tentative launch date of May 10th, Endeavour still has problems to be solved with the aft “Load Control Assembly”.

“Although early mission planning showed a preference to launch Atlantis as late as possible, in order to reduce the gap between the massive capability of the orbiters and the opening operational missions from the commercial resupply vehicles, June 28 became the solid launch date target for several months – per discussions between Shuttle and Station managers.” and “That date is, of course, at the mercy of waiting for Endeavour to launch. With the STS-134 mission now delayed until at least May 10, meetings at KSC on Tuesday morning noted the latest review into the rollover schedule and a potential slip to the launch date, likely with an eye on the possibility STS-134 will slip further.” (Source)

If you are staying in a timeshare in the Orlando area the sky will light up when it launches and it should be seen at timeshare resorts for miles around.  Might be a good thing to wake up and watch early depending on the exact launch time.  From the Orlando Kissimmee area you could also take the 528 East towards the Atlantic Ocean and see it from there. From www.nasa.gov website, here are some of the most popular off site locations for viewing launches from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida:

From North to South

  • Marina Park, 501 Marina Road, Titusville — Restrooms, parking
  • Sand Point Park, 101 N. Washington Ave, Titusville — Restrooms, parking
  • Space View Park, 8 Broad Street, Titusville — Parking nearby
  • Manzo Park, 3335 S. Washington Ave (US 1), Titusville — Restrooms, parking
  • Rotary Riverfront Park, 4141 S. Washington Ave (US 1), Titusville — Restrooms, parking
  • Kennedy Point Park, 4915 S. Washington Ave (US 1), Titusville — Restrooms, parking
  • Westbound SR 528 Causeway over the Banana River Park well off the right-of-way near the water
  • Jetty Park, East end of Port Canaveral off George King Blvd. — Restrooms, parking
  • Cocoa Beach Pier, 401 Meade Ave., Cocoa Beach — Restrooms, parking
  • Alan Shepard Park, East end of SR 520, Cocoa Beach — Restrooms, parking
  • Fischer Park, East side of SR A1A 1/2 mile south of SR 520 — Restrooms, parking
  • Lori Wilson Park, 1500 N. Atlantic Ave, Cocoa Beach — Restrooms, parking

Another possibility for viewing Space Shuttle launches is by boat! Boaters viewing launches should tune to Channel 16 VHF-FM for instructions from the Coast Guard pertaining to restricted areas. The Coast Guard will patrol those areas in the rivers and offshore in the Atlantic Ocean. Boaters will not be permitted north of marker 15 on the Banana River (where the high wires cross the river). Boaters may not enter the southern part of Mosquito Lagoon (past the Haulover Canal). However, the Canal, part of the Intracoastal Waterway, will remain open to traffic. Boaters may not set foot on any land that is part of the Kennedy Space Center or the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.

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