Enterprise Space Shuttle Moved to New York Museum

On June 6 the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum welcomed its newest resident, the space shuttle prototype Enterprise, as hundreds of people watched from the shore. The final leg of the space shuttles journey took place on the Hudson River in New York which allowed spectators to watch the massive space craft slowly make its way to the flight deck of the museum.

The Intrepid museum is a unique venue because it is made out of an aircraft carrier from World War II and serves as a military and maritime history museum. The Intrepid is permanently docked at Pier 86 in Manhattan and houses the USS Growler submarine, a Concorde SST, a Lockheed A-12 airplane and now it will also showcase the Enterprise space-shuttle.

The Enterprise space shuttle was moved to the new location from its previous spot at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum in Virginia. The initial leg of the shuttles journey was by air as the prototype was attached onto a Jumbo 747 airplane and flown to JFK airport. From there it was moved to a barge to make its way to the Intrepid.

The Enterprise started its life in 1976 when it was completed as the first Space Shuttle orbiter. The craft did not have any heat shields or engines because NASA did not design it for space flight and instead used it for tests. The prototype was used in 1977 for five test flights over California and ended up a traveling exhibit. NASA handed over the shuttle to the Smithsonian in 1985, which in turn awarded the Enterprise to the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in 2011.

With the long trek of the Enterprise over, NASA will begin moving the remaining two shuttles from their space program. The Discovery shuttle replaced the Enterprise at the Smithsonian while the Endeavour and Atlantis what for their turns to be moved to museums around the US.

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