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Space Science

Up Close With the Enterprise Shuttle At the Intrepid Museum 63

An anonymous reader writes "As you probably remember, the Space Shuttle Enterprise was flown on the back of a 747 to New York City where it was then delivered to the USS Intrepid. As sad as it was to see a space shuttle retired (and NASA take a major step down in the space flight abilities) this was one of the most amazingly geektastic events in recent memory. Now the shuttle is on top of the aircraft carrier's flight deck, living in its very own pavilion. As of tomorrow it will go on display as part of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, but today we got a sneak peek at the shuttle."
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Up Close With the Enterprise Shuttle At the Intrepid Museum

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  • by russotto ( 537200 ) on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @10:17PM (#40693373) Journal

    Um, carrying a shuttle on the back of a 747 is how it's typically transported. About as geektastic as a furniture shipment, by now.

  • Cool pictures but... (Score:5, Informative)

    by FSWKU ( 551325 ) on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @10:45PM (#40693569)

    "Some interesting points to note include the painted-over windows (the gray circles near the nose), the amazing intricacy and build quality of the landing gear mechanism, and the tail piece. The Enterprise was never fitted with engines so it has that specially designed part in the back."

    Umm, hate to be "that guy" but there is so much fail in that one snippet I can't stand it.

    • The "gray circles near the nose" are not windows that were painted over. They're inserts to block the nozzles for the RCS system (and thereby reduce drag for glide tests).
    • The Enterprise may not have had real engines, but it DID have mockups for handling tests at KSC (as seen here. []
    • That "specially designed part in the back" is an aerodynamic faring used to reduce drag on the ferry flights and thus reduce fuel consumption in an already heavily burdened 747 carrier aircraft. They ALL have one of those that could have been fitted when called for.

    Normally I wouldn't get this worked up, but from a site supposedly aimed at geeks, I expected more...

  • by Bruce Perens ( 3872 ) <> on Wednesday July 18, 2012 @11:38PM (#40693877) Homepage Journal

    That's the usual fate of aircraft put on permanent static display in an unsecured location. The unbroken canopy parts turn yellow in the sun and then craze, the tires rot, the paint fades, the cavities fill up with bird shit and used condoms, and you have an eyesore within a couple of years.

    Yes. While I am a tremendous fan of the Air Force museum in Dayton, and indeed think it's better than the Air and Space Museum in D.C., my annual visit there (for Dayton Hamvention) always includes a look at the various outdoor exhibits. Most obviously rotting from year to year are the two nuclear missle launchers, the truck one and the railroad one. But to their credit, they have much more material under roofs than most museums, and are collecting funds for yet another hangar. And as an active Air Force base they have some serious security.

    Another experience was in, I think, the Connecticut Trolley Museum. There was a really nice car that, I think, didn't need restoration, except that its doors were open to the weather and plants were starting to grow in some of its nooks.

  • Re:Seen it at Dulles (Score:5, Informative)

    by kiwimate ( 458274 ) on Thursday July 19, 2012 @12:46AM (#40694185) Journal

    The Udvar-Hazy Center has both the shuttle and the Blackbird []. As a bonus, you can go up into an observation tower [] and watch the planes at the nearby airport while listening to ATC chatter.

God help those who do not help themselves. -- Wilson Mizner