Climbing into cloudy skies,
the Space Shuttle Orbiter Discovery (OV-103)
took off from Kennedy Space Center Tuesday at 7 am local time.
its final departure from KSC, it rode atop a
modified Boeing 747
Shuttle Carrier Aircraft.
flyover of the
Goddard Space Flight Center, and Washington DC,
Discovery headed for Dulles International Airport in Virginia,
destined to reside at the
Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center.
Discovery retires as
NASA's most traveled shuttle orbiter,
covering more than 148 million miles in 39 missions that included
the delivery of the
Hubble Space Telescope to orbit.
from 1984 through 2011, Discovery spent a total
of one year in space.