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July 11, 2012
STS135-S-024 (8 July 2011) --- After suiting up, the STS-135 crew members exit the Operations and Checkout Building to board the Astrovan, which will take them to launch pad 39A for the launch of space shuttle Atlantis on the STS-135 mission. From the right are NASA astronauts Chris Ferguson, commander; Doug Hurley, pilot; Rex Walheim and Sandy Magnus, both mission specialists. Atlantis is scheduled to lift off at 11:26 a.m. (EDT) on July 8 for its mission to the International Space Station. STS-135 will deliver the Raffaello multi-purpose logistics module packed with supplies and spare parts for the orbiting outpost. Atlantis also will fly the Robotic Refueling Mission experiment that will investigate the potential for robotically refueling existing satellites in orbit. In addition, Atlantis will return with a failed ammonia pump module to help NASA better understand the failure mechanism and improve pump designs for future systems. STS-135 will be the 33rd flight of Atlantis, the 37th shuttle mission to the space station, and the 135th and final mission of NASA's Space Shuttle Program. Photo credit: NASA