Space Shuttle Lifts Off Safely

Atlantis heads for space station loaded with spare parts
By M. Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 16, 2009 1:53 PM CST
The crew of space shuttle Atlantis leaves for the ride out to board the shuttle today at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla.   (AP Photo/Terry Renna)
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(Newser) – Space shuttle Atlantis took off without a hitch this afternoon, departing Cape Canaveral, Fla., for the International Space Station. After a cloudy morning, the weather improved and the spacecraft lifted off on schedule at 2:28pm, carrying six astronauts—half of them first-timers in space—and two carriers filled with spare parts for the ISS, reports