The Space shuttle Endeavour will today launch for the final time. It is the end of an era and the passing of the space shuttle is similar to the end of the Concorde, both were very enigmatic transport and both ahead of their time.
In the lead up to today's launch, there were a few hiccups and the launch was delayed as an auxiliary power unit had failed. Following the Challenger and Columbia disasters, NASA have had to ensure that every system is checked and rechecked before allowing the shuttle to launch. The Discovery, whose final flight was completed on the 9th of March, now resides in the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC for all to see. Upon her return, the Endeavour will be exhibited in the California Science Centre in Los Angeles.
The space shuttle program has been responsible for transporting payloads to the International Space Station as well as the Hubble Telescope and numerous other things.