NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Space shuttle thermal protection tiles. Close-up of the underside of the Space Shuttle Atlantis, showing the numerous thermal protections tiles. These tiles protect the shuttle from the intense heat experienced when the spacecraft re-enters the Earth's atmosphere. Photographed on Launchpad 39A, Kennedy Space Centre, Florida, USA, on 31st May 2011, prior to the launch of the final Space Shuttle mission (STS-135).
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