Space Shuttle Enterprise Set For One Last FlightBy: Amanda Crum - April 24, 2012
The space shuttle “Enterprise”, which has been a museum display in the Smithsonian for the past 25 years, is about to take to the skies once again.
The “Enterprise” was never flown in space, but rather served as NASA’s test shuttle for approaches and landings in the ’70s. If the weather cooperates, it will fly once again this Friday on a trip from Washington, D.C. to New York. Because it was stripped of it’s instrument panel years ago, the shuttle will be attached to a 747 for the flight and will land at JFK airport to an eager crowd. It will later be transported to the city’s Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum to be put back on display.
Originally named “Constitution”, the shuttle was dubbed “Enterprise” after a petition came to the White House from Star Trek fans, urging them to change the name. Built in 1976, the shuttle didn’t complete a successful flight on it’s own until a year later. In 1979, it was tested in a launch at Kennedy Space Center, and went on to become the property of the Smithsonian after it was put into retirement in 1985.