Space shuttle Endeavour readies for final launch

    Update: The shuttle launched successfully at 8:56 a.m.

    Original report: A little more than two weeks after technical problems delayed the launch, the space shuttle Endeavour is ready to go. Despite some minor damage to the ship’s crew hatch, all systems are go for the 8:56 a.m. launch.

    Commander Mark Kelly, Pilot Gregory H. Johnson and Mission Specialists Michael Fincke, Greg Chamitoff, Andrew Feustel and European Space Agency astronaut Roberto Vittori are preparing for the 16-day mission — the final one for Endeavour.

    You can catch tweets and photos from Philadelphia Weekly coorespondent and others at #NASAtweetup and see live coverage of the shuttle on NASA TV.

    Psst… It’s launch day here at NewsWorks, too. NewWorks Tonight, our new 30-minute radio program, debuts at 6.p.m. on 91 FM. More details later.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.