NASA: Space Shuttle Atlantis STS-135 launch final preparation continues despite 2 lightning strikes

By on Jul 8, 2011 in Astronomy, Science, United States Comments

Updated: July 8, 2011 11:40 p.m.

Read NASA Space Shuttle Atlantis STS-135 mission launched (Video)

NASA‘s preparation for Space Shuttle’s final launch, the STS-135 mission despite two lightning strikes due to bad weather being felt at Kennedy Space Center, in Cape Canaveral.

Space Shuttle Atlantis
Image Credit: Troy Cryder/

According to the latest update from NASA, Space Shuttle Atlantis launch is being set to continue despite the rain, thunderstorm and two lightning strikes near the Launch Pad 39A.

As noted by NASA, the first lightning struck the water tower 515 feet (157 meters) from the pad at 12:31 p.m. (EDT) on Thursday night, a day before the Space Shuttle final launch.

The second lightning struck the beach area northeast of the pad at 12:40 p.m., or about 10 minutes later, which reports say may cause delay the launch.

As of this writing, NASA said the data review shows no sign of possible problem for the final launch of Space Shuttle, which is scheduled to be at 11:26 a.m. (EDT) on Friday, July 08, 2011.

So far, NASA noted that Space Shuttle Atlantis, External Tank, Solid Rocket Boosters, Space Shuttle Main Engines or Ground Support Equipment and other systems have no issues.

Nevertheless, NASA commits to review the data again during the traditional “Tanking Weather Meeting” scheduled for 1:30 a.m. Friday, where managers will be deciding to fuel Atlantis prior its launch.

The Space Shuttle Atlantis STS-135 mission will carry four crew members including Commander Chris Ferguson, Pilot Doug Hurley, and Mission Specialists Sandy Magnus and Rex Walheim and will spend For 12 days at the International Space Station.

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