|The space shuttle Discovery landed for the final time after a 30 year career where it|
flew into space more than any other fleet.
NASAFlorida"To the ship that has led the way time and time again, we say farewell," the NASA announcer said on NASA TV as the Discovery touched the runway and came to a halt.
The crew members of the 39th mission of the Discovery woke up to the song "Coming Home" by Gwyneth Paltrow. It began deorbit preparations at 5:53 a.m. and closed the doors of the shuttle's cargo bay at 7:12 a.m. it began the deorbit burn at 9:52 a.m. and began reentering the Earth's atmosphere at 11:25 a.m. EST.
As for what's next, NASA will be sending the iconic fleet to a space museum, likely the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum. It's the first space shuttles to be retired, but all three will eventually end up on display in a museum somewhere in the country. The next to retire will be Endeavour, followed by Atlantis, as NASA wraps up the space shuttle program.
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