1. Liftoff

    Shuttle Atlantis Begins Final Flight

    The space shuttle Atlantis astronauts left to right, pilot Doug Hurley, mission specialist Sandy Magnus, commander Chris Ferguson and mission specialist Rex Walheim,  leave the operations and check-out building on their way to the pad at the Kennedy Space Center Friday, July 8, 2011, in Cape Canaveral, Fla. Atlantis is the 135th and final space shuttle launch for NASA. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

    Chris O'Meara / AP Photo

    Despite a 70 percent chance of stormy weather, the space shuttle Atlantis lifted off for the last time at Cape Canaveral. The four astronauts will carry supplies to the International Space Station, then return to Earth on July 20, the 42nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. After it lands, Atlantis will go to a museum, and the shuttle program will come to an end. It's unclear what will be next for NASA, which says it aims to send a human on a near-Earth asteroid by 2025. Up to a million people are expected to watch today's launch, with 14 members of Congress, Attorney General Eric Holder, Gloria Estefan, Jimmy Buffet, and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak on the VIP list.

    Read it at MSNBC