NASA clears Atlantis for final liftoff on Friday

May 12, 2010 By MARCIA DUNN , AP Aerospace Writer
STS-132 crew members, from left, Mission Specialists Michael Good, Garrett Reisman, Pilot Dominic Antonelli, Commander Kenneth Ham, and Mission Specialists Stephen Bowen and Piers Sellers pose for a group photo after arriving Monday, May 10, 2010, at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla. The final launch of the space shuttle Atlantis is planned for Friday afternoon. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

(AP) -- Space shuttle Atlantis has been cleared for liftoff.

Mission managers on Wednesday gave the go-ahead for the countdown to proceed toward Friday afternoon's planned launch. It will be 32nd and final flight for Atlantis.

Everything is looking good for an on-time launch at 2:20 p.m. Managers are tracking no technical troubles, and forecasters say there's a 70 percent chance the will cooperate.

Atlantis will carry up spare parts for the .

Only two shuttle missions remain after this one. is retiring its three shuttles to focus on new technologies and rockets that could one day get astronauts to asteroids and Mars.

Explore further: NASA's reliance on outsourcing launches causes a dilemma for the space agency

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