Bad Astronomy

Discovery waits for her final flight

NASA just posted this lovely picture of the Space Shuttle Discovery sitting on its pad, awaiting the command to light her engines and take her final flight into space.

[Click to embiggen.]

The picture was taken a couple of weeks ago; note the thin crescent Moon on the left.

In fact, the sight of the Moon and the Orbiter together makes me a little sad. The Shuttles can’t get Americans back there, and barring this and one more flight of Endeavour later this year, it’ll be a while before we can put humans into space at all. But I still think that we can once again make our presence known in space. And next time, I hope it’s to stay.

Discovery is due to launch tomorrow, Thursday, at 16:50 Eastern time.

Image Credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett

Related posts:

- Fanning the flames of the near future
- Ten years of the International Space Station
- Challenger astronauts memorialized on the Moon
- Congress passes NASA authorization bill but I’d rather watch sausages being made