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Shuttle Enterprise arrives in New York City

April 27, 2012 8:53:37 PM PDT
The space shuttle Enterprise arrived in New York City on Friday morning, treating residents and visitors to a remarkable sight in the sky. CLICK HERE TO SEE VIEWER PHOTOS OF THE ENTERPRISE OVER NEW YORK CITY

Enterprise zoomed around the city, riding piggyback on top of a modified jumbo jet. Its trip included flyovers over parts of the city and landmarks including the Statue of Liberty and the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum on Manhattan's west side.

As the shuttle passed Manhattan, people gathered on rooftops to gawk. It was chased through the air by a NASA plane, and in the Hudson River by numerous ferries and other boats.

The shuttle had been scheduled to arrive earlier in the week, but NASA pushed it back because of bad weather.

The Enterprise is being brought to the city where it has a new permanent home waiting at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. While the Enterprise did not have the capability of heading to space, it served as a research and training model for other shuttles. What NASA learned from The Enterprise forced design changes on the shuttles that did achieve orbit. For the last thirty years, she has sat in the Smithsonian Museum.

The Enterprise departed from Washington DC's Dulles International Airport on the back of a NASA Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) shortly after 9:30 a.m., the same way it and its sister shuttles have made their way around the country during the decades of the Space Shuttle Program.

The flight landed at JFK Airport shortly before 11:30 a.m.

The shuttle will be moved by barge to the Intrepid museum for public display in June. The museum is at a decommissioned aircraft carrier moored off Manhattan. It's been making room for the shuttle on its flight deck. It's scheduled to open to the public in mid-July.

CLICK HERE TO SEE PHOTOS OF ENTERPRISE AND THE INTREPID

ONLINE: Click here for a look at the space shuttles and their transition from space travel to museums at NASA.gov

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