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  • Atlantis Landing Forecast: "Severe Clear"
    Posted by Mark Carreau 5:58 AM on Jul 21, 2011

    The Atlantis astronauts can expect great weather as they descend to Earth early Thursday, following a successful 13-day re-supply mission to the International Space Station. The descent will mark the end of NASA's long running shuttle program.

    The orbiter is scheduled to touchdown at NASA's Kennedy Space Center at 5:56 a.m., EDT, The forecast for Central Florida calls for clear but darkened skies and light winds..Commander Chris Ferguson, pilot Doug Hurley and mission specialists Sandra Magnus and Rex Walheim expect an emotional homecoming as they return from the 135th shuttle flight over the 30 year life of the program.

    The astronauts were given the "go" to close the orbiter's payload bay doors just after 2 a.m, EDT.

    In Mission Control, NASA entry flight director Tony Ceccacci told his Houston troops, "We're making history tonight, but let's have fun.  Let's enjoy this; we won't do it again.

    Atlantis lifted off July 8. The 26-year-old spacecraft follows Endeavour and Discovery into retirement. They landed on June 1 and March 6 respectively.  

    Tags: os 99, NASA, space shuttle, International Space Station

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