Rarely Seen Shuttle Pre-Flight Activities

Posted: January 24, 2008 in Future

Shuttle "Discovery":
Pre-Flight Activities, Rarely Seen by the General Public

These
photos deserve a wide viewing audience: the amount of thought and
engineering that goes into every launch is immense; each successful
take-off represents the Mankind’s finest effort, and is a wonder to
behold.

External tank arrives by barge from Louisiana:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

External tank approaches Vertical Assembly Building (VAB):
Space Exploration

Removing external tank:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Preparing to lift the tank to vertical:
Space Exploration

Lifting the tank:
Space Exploration

Solid rockets are attached:
Space Exploration

Orbiter: External tank with Solid Rocket Boosters (SRB):
Space Exploration

Engines are attached to the shuttle in the Orbiter Processing Facility:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Shuttle in sling ready for lift in VAB:
Space Exploration

Shuttle has been moved to VAB and will be attached to external tank:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Shuttle is attached:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Payload Preparation in Space Station Processing Facility:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM):
Space Exploration

Payload carrier leaves Canister Rotation Facility:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Payload being moved to Launch Pad:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Lifting payload into position for insertion into "Discovery"
when it arrives at the pad:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Shuttle "Discovery" leaves VAB:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Trip to launch:
Length – 3 1/2 mi
Time – 6-8 hours
Arrow indicates the Launch Pad.
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Crawler Control
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

"Discovery" arrives at Pad:
Space Exploration

Payload is also inside the Launch Pad:
Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Space Exploration

Ready for Launch:
Space Exploration

We Have Lift Off !
Space Exploration

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