Endeavour's final voyage

Ap - Endeavour's astronauts accomplished the No. 1 objective of their mission last Thursday, installing a $2 billion cosmic ray detector on the International Space Station to scan the invisible universe for years to come. This is the next-to-last shuttle mission and the final spacewalks of the program scheduled, meant to leave the space station in the best condition possible for the next decade. The 30-year shuttle era will end in July with the flight of Atlantis.

On Monday, three of the six space station residents will head home in their Russian Soyuz capsule after a five-month mission. In a unique photo op, the departing crew will photograph Endeavour parked at the space station. Then on Wednesday, Fincke and Feustel will venture back out for spacewalk No. 3. Endeavour, under the command of Mark Kelly, husband of wounded Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, will remain at the orbiting outpost for another week. Landing is scheduled for June 1.


Endeavour's final voyage

This Thursday, May 19, 2011 picture provided by NASA shows the space shuttle Endeavour docked with the International Space Station as the space station's robotic arm transfers the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer-2 from the shuttle for installation on the ISS. AP

Endeavour's final voyage

In this image provided by NASA astronaut Andrew Feustel works in the space shuttle Endeavour's payload bay during the mission's first spacewalk at the International Space Station Friday May 20, 2011. Feustel and Gregory Chamitoff installed a light fixture and swapped out some experiments parked outside the space station during the first spacewalk. AP

Endeavour's final voyage

In this image provided by NASA astronaut Andrew Feustel enters the hatch on the International Space Station at the end of the mission's first spacewalk Friday May 20, 2011. Ron Garan / NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

In this image provided by NASA Astronaut Drew Feustel works in the vacuum of space during the first of four spacewalks Friday May 20, 2011 during the mission of Space Shuttle Endeavour to the International Space Station. Working early in the morning of Friday, Feustel and Astronaut Greg Chamitoff successfully installed antennas for the External Wireless Communication system, routing cables, setting up the antenna, installing handrails, and connecting power cables during this spacewalk. This was the 245th spacewalk conducted by U.S. astronauts and was Chamitoff's first spacewalk and Feustel's fourth. NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

In this image provided by NASA astronauts Andrew Feustel (right) and Greg Chamitoff, participate in the mission's first spacewalk as construction and maintenance continues on the International Space Station Friday May 20, 2011. NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

In this image provided by NASA astronaut Gregory Chamitoff makes his way back to the hatch at the end the mission's first spacewalk at the International Space Station Friday May 20, 2011. Nearly five hours into the six-hour spacewalk, mission controllers noticed that Gregory Chamitoff's carbon dioxide sensor wasn't working. The spacewalk was 11 minutes shorter than planned. This was the first spacewalk for Chamitoff. He called it "a dream come true for me." NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

This Thursday, May 19, 2011 picture provided by NASA shows the space shuttle Endeavour docked with the International Space Station and Italy seen in the background. NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

This image provided by NASA taken by one of the Expedition 27 crew members aboard the International Space Station shows the space shuttle Endeavour as the two spacecraft made their relative approach on Wednesday May 18, 2011. NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

NASA astronauts Mark Kelly (left), STS-134 commander; and Andrew Feustel, mission specialist, are pictured on the aft flight deck of space shuttle Endeavour during rendezvous and docking operations with the International Space Station on Wednesday May 18, 2011. NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

This image provided by NASA shows an image photographed from a shuttle training aircraft, as the space shuttle Endeavour and its six-member crew head toward Earth orbit and rendezvous with the International Space Station Monday May 16, 2011. NASA

Endeavour's final voyage

Space shuttle Endeavour, STS-134, blasts off, Monday, May 16, 2011, on its historic 25th and final flight from the Kennedy Space Center. Red Huber / Orlando Sentinel

Endeavour's final voyage

Photographers capture space shuttle Endeavour as it pierces the clouds and disappears after launch at Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Monday, May 16, 2011. Craig Rubadoux / Daytona Beach News-Journal

Endeavour's final voyage

Photographers capture space shuttle Endeavour as it pierces the clouds and disappears after launch at Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Monday, May 16, 2011. J. David Ake / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

Photographers capture the launch of space shuttle Endeavour at Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Monday, May 16, 2011. J. David Ake / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

Space shuttle Endeavour, STS-134, blasts off, Monday, May 16, 2011, on its historic 25th and final flight from the Kennedy Space Center. Red Huber / Orlando Sentinel

Endeavour's final voyage

The space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011 as the space shuttle Endeavour began a 14-day mission to the international space station. Terry Renna / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

The space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. John Raoux / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

Space shuttle Endeavour clears the launch pad at Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Monday, May 16, 2011. Chris O'Meara / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

The space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. Terry Renna / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

The space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. John Raoux / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

The space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. John Raoux / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

The space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. Chris O'Meara / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

The space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. Chris O'Meara / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

Spectators watch the space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. Terry Renna / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

Spectators watch the space shuttle Endeavour lifts off from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., Monday, May 16, 2011. Terry Renna / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

Joy Lewis holds her son Kaleb Lewis, 1, of Stafford, Va., as they watch the launch of space shuttle Endeavour from the Rocket Garden at the Kennedy Space Center Visitors Center, Monday, May 16, 2011, in Cape Canaveral, Fla. Julie Fletcher / AP

Endeavour's final voyage

Space shuttle Endeavour, STS-134, sits on launch pad 39A Sunday, May 15, 2011 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Red Huber / Orlando Sentinel

Endeavour's final voyage

Space shuttle Endeavour, STS-134, sits on launch pad 39A Sunday, May 15, 2011 at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. Red Huber / Orlando Sentinel

Endeavour's final voyage

Space shuttle Endeavour, STS-134, astronauts from left, pilot Gregory Johnson, Roberto Vittori, European Space Agency, Commander Mark Kelly, Gregory Chamitoff, Mike Finchke and Andrew Feustel walk out, Monday, May 16, 2011 from the operations and checkout building headed to launch pad 39A. Red Huber / Orlando Sentinel

Endeavour's final voyage

Space shuttle Endeavour sits on launch pad 39A just before sunrise at the Kennedy Space Center, Monday, May 16, 2011. Tom Burton / Orlando Sentinel

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