Space Shuttle Discovery, atop its Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, NASA 905, flew over the US national capital region on April 17, 2012 on the final leg of its ferry flight from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida to Dulles International Airport in Virginia, on the way to its final home at the National And & Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. The image above shows the duo flying near the U.S. Capitol and the video below shows views of Discovery from various vantage points in Washington D.C.
Discovery, the first orbiter retired from NASA’s shuttle fleet, completed 39 missions, spent 365 days in space, orbited the Earth 5,830 times, and traveled 238539663.3 km (148,221,675 miles). Discovery new mission will be to “commemorate past achievements in space and to educate and inspire future generations of explorers,” NASA says.
Here’s a video taken by Joy Hargraves who went to the Udvar-Hazy Center today to watch the Shuttle Discovery come in to her final resting place:
Nancy Atkinson is currently Universe Today’s Contributing Editor. Previously she served as UT’s Senior Editor and lead writer, and has worked with Astronomy Cast and 365 Days of Astronomy. Nancy is the author of the new book “Incredible Stories from Space: A Behind-the-Scenes Look at the Missions Changing Our View of the Cosmos.” She is also a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.