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Space shuttle Enterprise's NYC flyover is rescheduled -- again

April 25, 2012|By Rene Lynch
  • The space shuttle Enterprise is mated on top of the NASA 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft at Washington Dulles International Airport.
The space shuttle Enterprise is mated on top of the NASA 747 Shuttle Carrier… (Bill Ingalls / NASA/EPA )

The Big Apple will have to wait a few more days for its space shuttle to arrive.

The retiring space shuttle Enterprise was supposed to arrive Wednesday, but bad weather delayed the plans for a dramatic New York City flyover. (The flyover was originally supposed to happen Monday, but an unfavorable forecast scuttled those plans, too.)

NASA said Wednesday that the rendezvous could now take place Friday -- Mother Nature permitting.

The highly anticipated flyover comes as the space shuttle heads into retirement at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum this summer in New York City. But the fun part is getting the Enterprise from its current parking spot at Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C., to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.

That will involve the ultimate piggy-back ride, courtesy a modified 747. The flyover is sure to be an eye-popping spectacle, with the legendary aircraft  expected to fly near a variety of landmarks, including the Statue of Liberty.

The shuttle Enterprise is one of four NASA shuttles that are going into retirement at various places throughout the United States.

Last week, Discovery was delivered to Dulles International Airport. Discovery's final resting place will be the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va.

The California Science Center in Los Angeles and the Kennedy Space Center visitor complex at Cape Canaveral, Fla., are also getting shuttles after a fierce political battle in D.C. (Why the big fight? Because who doesn't want to bring a retired shuttle home to their constituents?)

Once the Enterprise is delivered to JFK airport, it will be "demated" (that's NASA's term for it) from the 747 and then placed on a barge and moved via tugboat up the Hudson River to its final resting place at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum. Its arrival there is scheduled for sometime in June.

If all goes as planned, space shuttle Enterprise's final flight will take place between 9:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Eastern time.

Again, weather permitting.

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rene.lynch@latimes.com

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