At a time when our little robotic space explorers are doing such wonderful work, it’s important that we never forget the majesty of the Shuttle program. This was human spaceflight’s pinnacle, and it should not only remind us of the power of science and ingenuity, but inspire us to write the next chapter.
Oh wait, I don’t have a coffee table.
Endeavour has now been safely delivered to the California Science Center, where it will serve to remind our children how America used to send its own astronauts into space in a super-cool rocket glider, as if it were a country inhabited by total bosses. They will probably think it’s fake.
The script has probably already been optioned, but had someone wanted to steal the space shuttle before delivery, and perhaps move it to a deserted island launch pad for private use, this is how they could have done it.
Discovery’s Final Flight
The space shuttle Discovery flew over Washington D.C. this morning, perched atop a 747 transport plane. This was the shuttle’s final flight, as it is being delivered to its final resting place at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museum.
D.C. residents got quite the air show today, as shown by these photos.
If you’re jealous and you happen to live in NYC, keep your eyes open next week as the Enterprise, a never-flown shuttle prototype, makes its way to the west side of Manhattan to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. It will be visible on a barge in the Hudson River and will be lifted via crane onto the aircraft carrier deck.
West coast residents will have a chance later this year when Endeavour is flown out to Los Angeles for her final resting place.
Lego Space Shuttle Boldly Goes Where No Tiny Plastic Ship Has Gone Before
Is there some sort of Lego space colony in the works that no one told me about? I mean, first we have the Lego International Space Station built on the actual ISS, and now we have this Lego shuttle taking an epic journey to the edge of space?
This is a future of space travel we can believe in. But how did they build a space shuttle with those silly little hands?
From staceythinx, now with added video. Who thought a few seconds could be so powerful?:
Click through to see the most detailed video of a shuttle launch ever assembled:
Imaging experts funded by the Space Shuttle Program and located at NASA’s Ames Research Center prepared this image using fusion software to combine six simultaneously captured images they took of the STS-134 launch on May 16, 2011. Each image was taken at a different exposure setting, then composited to balance the brightness of the rocket engine output with the regular daylight levels at which the orbiter can be seen. The processing software digitally removes pure black or pure white pixels from one image and replaces them with the most detailed pixel option from the five other images. This technique can help visualize debris falling during a launch or support research involving intense light sources like rocket engines, plasma experiments and hypersonic vehicle engines.
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Do you agree? What are some of your favorite science stories of the year?