Photos: Shuttle Discovery Sets Sail on Final Voyage

There She Goes

NASA/Tony Gray and Tom Farrar

Space shuttle Discovery soars into space from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, on Feb. 24, 2011, beginning its final flight to the International Space Station on the STS-133 mission.

And We Have Ignition

NASA

Space shuttle Discovery ignites for liftoff on Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida beginning its final flight to the International Space Station on the STS-133 mission.

Soaring to Space

NASA/Kenny Allen

Space shuttle Discovery hurtles upwards at an amazing 17,500 miles per hour, embarking on the STS-133 mission to the International Space Station. Liftoff from launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida occurred on Feb. 24, 2011.

Floating on Clouds

NASA/Kenny Allen

As if soaring through the heavens, space shuttle Discovery launches through rolling clouds of smoke and steam, embarking on its final scheduled mission, STS-133, to the International Space Station. Liftoff from launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida occurred at 4:53 p.m. EST on Feb. 24, 2011.

Twin Columns

NASA/Rusty Backer and Michael Gayle

Twin columns of fire propel space shuttle Discovery toward orbit, embarking on its final flight. Launch to the International Space Station on the STS-133 mission was at 4:53 p.m. EST on Feb. 24, 2011.

The Pipes, The Pipes

NASA/Sandra Joseph and Kevin O'Connell

With pipes in the foreground, space shuttle Discovery ignites for liftoff from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, beginning its final flight, the STS-133 mission,

Straight Up

NASA/Sandra Joseph and Kevin O'Connell

Space shuttle Discovery clears the tower at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, beginning its final flight, the STS-133 mission, on Feb. 24, 2011.

Yes Time for Cameras

NASA/Tony Gray and Tom Farrar

Cameras photograph space shuttle Discovery lifting off from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida beginning its final flight, the STS-133 mission to the International Space Station, on Feb. 24, 2011.

Smoke on the Water (coming out of the Sound Suppression System)

NASA/Tony Gray and Tom Farrar

Smoke and steam rise impressively around space shuttle Discovery and Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, as the shuttle's solid rocket boosters and main engines ignite for lift off embarking on its final mission on Feb. 24, 2011.

Start Me Up

NASA/Tony Gray and Tom Farrar

A tiny flicker of flame emerges as Space shuttle Discovery ignites for liftoff from Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, beginning its final flight, the STS-133 mission, on Feb. 24, 2011.

Stand Back!

NASA/Tony Gray and Tom Farrar

Space shuttle Discovery ignites for liftoff on Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida beginning its final flight, the STS-133 mission, to the International Space Station, on Feb. 24, 2011.

Have a news tip, correction or comment? Let us know at community@space.com.