Space shuttle Discovery, mounted atop a NASA 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA), flies over the Washington skyline today, Tuesday, April 17. NASA will transfer Discovery to the National Air and Space Museum to begin its new mission to commemorate past achievements in space and to educate and inspire future generations of explorers. Photo and caption courtesy of NASA/Robert Markowitz
I just love how these shuttles get around. Pictured above is space shuttle Discovery, the first orbiter retired from NASA’s fleet. The shuttle traveled 148,221,675 miles, spent a total of 1 year in space, and completed 29 missions, according to NASA.
It was part of the NASA’s 30-year space shuttle program, which concluded in July 2001. According to NASA:
Starting with Columbia and continuing with Challenger, Discovery, Atlantis and Endeavour, the spacecraft has carried people into orbit repeatedly, launched, recovered and repaired satellites, conducted cutting-edge research and built the largest structure in space, the International Space Station. The final space shuttle mission, STS-135, ended July 21, 2011 when Atlantis rolled to a stop at its home port, NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
See more photos here.
Want to see a shuttle? Here’s where they’re going.