In the early morning hours after landing, space shuttle Endeavour's "towback" vehicle slowly pulls it from the Shuttle Landing Facility to Orbiter Processing Facility-1 at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida. A purge unit that pumps conditioned air into a shuttle after landing is connected to Endeavour's aft end. Once inside the processing facility, Endeavour will be prepared for future public display.
Endeavour's final return from space completed the 16-day, 6.5-million-mile STS-134 mission. Main gear touchdown was at 2:34:51 a.m. EDT, followed by nose gear touchdown at 2:35:04 a.m., and wheelstop at 2:35:36 a.m.
Endeavour and its crew delivered the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer-2 (AMS) and the Express Logistics Carrier-3 (ELC-3) to the International Space Station. AMS will help researchers understand the origin of the universe and search for evidence of dark matter, strange matter and antimatter from the station. ELC-3 carried spare parts that will sustain station operations once the shuttles are retired from service. STS-134 was the 25th and final flight for Endeavour, which spent 299 days in space, orbited Earth 4,671 times and traveled 122,883,151 miles. Photo credit: NASA/Jack Pfaller