That’s right: we’re still bummed that Houston got the mockup space shuttle. But one good thing about Texas is that even consolation prizes come super-sized.
“NASA is going to transfer ownership of the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft to the Space Center Houston” – said President and CEO Richard Allen.
That’s what I’m talking about! Do you remember that big 747 that ferried the space shuttles everywhere but here… except for a few hours layover? Well, we’re getting it.
“This aircraft has a tremendous history, flown over 220 shuttle ferrying flights” – explained Allen.
In 1976 the Johnson Space Center modified this airplane to help it carry the shuttles from coast to coast. Sometime in November, this icon will be back in town to become a source of inspiration for future generations. Eventually, the mockup shuttle will be mounted on top of it – hey get your mind out of the gutter, we’re talking about history here!
“Ultimately, in early 2015, we’ll allow the public to not only go inside the shuttle, the cockpit, the mid-deck and see the cargo bay” -added Allen- “but we’ll also be able to let them go inside the shuttle carrier aircraft.”
With the mockup shuttle and the carrier together, Houston will be the proud host of the only complete ferrying configuration in the world. So there you go Texans… we might have gotten the mockup cargo, but we still get to keep the big truck.