Space Shuttle Atlantis Launch Video: The Final Flight

By Stan Schroeder

At 11:26 ET Friday, space shuttle Atlantis flew up in the sky toward the International Space Station, marking an end of an era: It was the last aircraft to launch as part of NASA's space shuttle program.

Atlantis will carry four astronauts during the 12-day mission, bring supplies and spare parts to the International Space Station and conduct an experiment to test new refueling and repair technology for satellites in orbit, after which it will return to Earth and retire.

SEE ALSO: Space Shuttle Launch: Photos from the Final Atlantis Flight

If you've missed the live stream of the launch, you can see it in the archived video below. The actual liftoff starts somewhere around 18:00 in the video.

Photos from the Final Atlantis Flight

Stay tuned. We'll keep updating this gallery with new photos.

Space Shuttle Launch: Photos from the Final Atlantis Flight

@schierholz's Badge

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

@schierholz Tweeted

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

@schierholz Handed Out M&Ms

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Tweetup Participants

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Tweetup Badge

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Tweetup Participants

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

@SethGreen Tweeted

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Media Getting Signals

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Elmo Reports Launch

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Official Launch M&Ms

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

NPR Tweeted

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Mashable Media Badge

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Liftoff

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Solid Rocket Booster Separation

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Liftoff

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Shuttle Atlantis

Shuttle Atlantis moves into the Vehicle Assembly Building.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Atlantis Sunrise

The sun rises over the launch pad at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Atlantis Sunset

Sunset over Launch Pad 39A before the Raffaello multi-purpose logistics module (MPLM) is delivered.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Atlantis Sunrise

Another sun rises over the Shuttle Atlantis.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

The Crew Celebrates

The STS-135 crew wave American flags in honor of Independence Day. From left: Commander Chris Ferguson, Pilot Doug Hurley, and Mission Specialists Sandy Magnus and Rex Walheim.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

The Crew Heads for Final Launch Preparation

The STS-135 team departs for the Astronaut Crew Quarters in Kennedy's Operations and Checkout Building.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Firing Room 4

In Firing Room 4, NASA team members prepare for launch.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Launch Pad

Atlantis was "hard down" at its seaside launch pad by 3:29 a.m. EDT on Wednesday, June 1.

Photo courtesy of NASA.

Atlantis Flag

The Atlantis flag flutters below the American flag.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Launch Pad

A view of the launch pad from across the water.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Media Gathers

News crews prepare their equipment at tents near the launch pad.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Media Tents

Two-tier media tents provide better views of the Atlantis.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Launch Clock

Ryan Matzner, lead strategist at Fueled, a mobile app development firm, stands in front of the countdown-to-launch clock.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Media Tripods

Media stakes out their turf with tripods aimed at the shuttle launch.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Tweetup

Media and spectators alike participate in the lunch Tweetup.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

En Route

The van will lead the procession of astronauts to the shuttle.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

The astronauts en route to the launch pad.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Precious cargo on the way to the launch pad.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

Vehicle Assembly Building

An impressive spectacle in itself, the Vehicle Assembly Building has been used to assemble NASA vehicles since 1968. It is the largest single-story building in the world.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

A view of the vehicle assembly building.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Matzner.

BONUS: Amazing Photographs From Endeavour's Last Voyage

NASA recently released these breathtaking images from the last voyage of Endeavour following its return from space last month. Until October 2010, it was believed that the Endeavour mission would be the last space shuttle flight — now Atlantis is set to take that honor.

endeavour

Endeavour's final voyage