...Here Is Some Information
On This Historic Space Flight...
During the 14-day mission, Endeavour delivered the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer and spare parts, including two S-band Communications Antennas, a high-pressure gas tank, and additional spare parts for Dextre and Micrometeoroid Debris Shields.
The Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer is a state-of-the-art Particle Physics Detector being constructed, tested and operated by an International Team composed of 56 Institutes from 16 Countries and organized under United States Department of Energy (DOE) sponsorship. This will be the 36th Shuttle Mission to the International Space Station. The International Space Station (ISS) is an internationally developed Research Facility that is being assembled in a low Earth orbit. On-orbit construction of the Station began in 1998 and is scheduled for completion by late 2011. The Station is expected to remain in operation until at least 2015, and likely 2020.
With a greater cross-sectional area than that of any previous Space Station, the ISS can be seen from Earth with the naked eye. The ISS is by far the largest artificial Satelite that has ever orbited Earth. The ISS serves as a Research Laboratory that has a microgravity environment in which crews conduct experiments in biology, chemistry, medicine, physiology and physics, as well as astronomical and meterological observations. The Station provides a unique environment for the testing of the spacecraft systems that will be required for missions to the Moon and Mars.
The ISS is operated by Expedition Crews of six Astronauts and Cosmonauts, with the Station Program maintaining an uninterrupted human presence in Space since the launch of Expedition 1 on 31 October 2000 (a total of 10 years and 130 days). The Program thus holds the current record for the longest uninterrupted human presence in Space, surpassing the previous record of 3,644 days, set aboard Mir (a Soviet and later Russian Space Station). As of 27 February 2011, the crew of Expedition 26 is aboard.
Pictured clockwise in the STS-134 crew portrait are NASA astronauts Mark Kelly (bottom center), commander; Gregory H. Johnson, pilot; Michael Fincke, Greg Chamitoff, Andrew Feustel and European Space Agency’s Roberto Vittori, all mission specialists. Image credit: NASA
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Each Astronaut Bead is approximately 1-1/2" (38 mm) tall and is made on a 3/32" (2.38 mm) Mandrel. The Mandrel hole runs all the way through the little Astronaut from top to bottom.
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