The vulture in the foreground may have been startled to flight by the roar of space shuttle Discovery, in the background, as it hurtles into space atop a column of fire. Discovery is headed to the International Space Station on mission STS-120. Beyond the billows of smoke is the Atlantic Ocean. Liftoff was on time at 11:38:19 a.m. EDT. Discovery carries the Italian-built U.S. Node 2, called Harmony. During the 14-day STS-120 mission, the crew will install Harmony and move the P6 solar arrays to their permanent position and deploy them. Discovery is expected to complete its mission and return home at 4:47 a.m. EST on Nov. 6. Photo courtesy of Nikon/Scott Andrews.