Back to STS-135 photos

The last shuttle crew, the four astronauts who will ride Atlantis into space on STS-135, practice driving the M-113 armored personnel carrier, a tank they would use to escape from Launch Pad 39A in the event of an on-pad emergency. The crew would be required to first exit the shuttle, and use the slidewire escape basket system to whisk themselves away from the shuttle; the M-113 is stationed at the bottom of the slidewires along with a bunker. Two more M-113s are positioned one-mile form the shuttle, where an emergency rescue crew awaits during launch.