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  4/17: Shuttle Discovery's ferry flight to Virginia (Page 3)

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Author Topic:   4/17: Shuttle Discovery's ferry flight to Virginia
heng44
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posted 04-19-2012 08:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for heng44   Click Here to Email heng44     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Robert and Ben, excellent photos! You can measure yourself with the best.

tegwilym
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posted 04-19-2012 10:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for tegwilym   Click Here to Email tegwilym     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by cspg:
More seriously, beautiful shot from Ben Cooper on Astronomy Picture of the Day for April 19.
Two days in a row on APOD! Ben is my hero.

astro-nut
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posted 04-19-2012 11:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for astro-nut   Click Here to Email astro-nut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I would like to say thank you to Robert and the other collectSPACE members who have posted their photos to share with those of us who could not attend these events. The photos are great — keep them coming!

"Thank you" again.

Gonzo
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posted 04-19-2012 03:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gonzo   Click Here to Email Gonzo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Is everyone aware that the Udvar Hazy Center has webcams? Cameras 3 and 4 show where Discovery WILL be. Apparently, very soon!

tncmaxq
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posted 04-19-2012 04:40 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for tncmaxq   Click Here to Email tncmaxq     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great day at the museum. Historic. I got to meet Curt Brown. I saw his STS-85 launch. Hope some of his colleagues will be there tomorrow.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 04-20-2012 05:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Copy that. I got to meet 16 astronauts I haven't seen before, exchanging a brief word. Engle shook a few people's hands, including mine, thanking us for understanding that he had a plane to catch.

I told Cabana, who is the KSC director, that he runs a nice facility. "It'd better be. Any complaints, come see me," he said.

During my brief interaction with Glenn, I told him my cousin was named after him - my cousin Glenn was born the day astronaut Glenn went into space in 1962.

Most of them were gone by 2 p.m. I did notice though, Readdy and Nespoli sticking around for quite a bit afterward, talking with people. Horowitz was another who stuck around for some time.

I dumped my camera shots into my Flickr account. Too busy to take any photos of the astronauts, and who wants to see them anyway when you can see Enterprise and Discovery?

alanh_7
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posted 04-20-2012 06:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for alanh_7   Click Here to Email alanh_7     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Nice shots of Enterprise and Discovery. That's sure something you don't see every day.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 04-20-2012 07:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Interestingly enough, Enterprise was the fit-check orbiter for Vandenberg while Discovery was to be dedicated for Vandenberg flights.

I'm just now going through my notes from yesterday - was Ken Cameron there? Supposedly he was, but the autograph I have is of Ken Cockrell, who also flew on STS-56. Perhaps I missed Cameron.

astro-nut
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posted 04-20-2012 12:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for astro-nut   Click Here to Email astro-nut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Was any collectSPACE member lucky enough to get a photo of Joe Engle with the Enterprise and Discovery? Two of the three space shuttles that he flew.

NavySpaceFan
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posted 04-20-2012 01:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for NavySpaceFan   Click Here to Email NavySpaceFan     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Had the opportunity to attend yesterday's ceremony and conducted a very successful book signing afterwards.

Great meeting Rob for the first time, and the ceremony was amazing! I also had the opportunity to meet Bob Jacobs (NASA Associate Administrator for Public Affairs), Stephanie Stilson (Discovery's flow director), Bill Gerstenmaier (in passing), and astronaut Steve Robinson (also in passing). Seeing Discovery and Enterprise together like that was just awesome!

Glint
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posted 04-20-2012 01:54 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Glint   Click Here to Email Glint     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Robert, thanks for the fantastic coverage and photos you've provided during the Enterprise-Discovery transfer. I gave you a quick shout and a wave yesterday as you toiled away in the press section during the delivery ceremony.

I've been out there three times this week: 1) Tuesday's landing, 2) Thursday's delivery, and 3) this morning's NASS preview. Also stopped by Dulles today and saw Enterprise stacked on top of the SCA ready for its trip next week to New York.

By the way, here's a shot I took from the roof of the Udvar-Hazy Center as the Discovery SCA made its final landing approach into Dulles with the gear down (click for full view):

Discovery Lands at Dulles

"T-38's eye view of Discovery SCA"

GoesTo11
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posted 04-20-2012 07:57 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That's one of the most gorgeous shots I've seen yet, from anyone. Awesome. (And thanks for linking a "big" version)

MarylandSpace
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posted 04-20-2012 10:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MarylandSpace   Click Here to Email MarylandSpace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I, too, had a great day at on Thursday at Udvar-Hazy for the Discovery handoff.

Spent the morning with Hart and Mrs. Hart (remember Hart to Hart with Robert Wagner and Stephanie Powers in the 1970's? cS's Hart's are just as awesome).

Col. Glenn, Gen. Bolden, and Gen. Daily all gave excellent speeches. Seeing the pristine Enterprise and flight worn Discovery nose to nose was an incredible sight. The weather was perfect.

Most of the astronauts signed at least a few autographs and some signed many. I was fortunate to get nine shuttle astronauts to sign my Shuttles 20 book with Eileen Collins being my favorite of all during the day. Thank you Col. Collins and others.

I had a couple of fun exchanges with the astronauts. With Major Paolo Nespoli, I threw in a Bon Giorno and Ciao. I gave Dr. Steve Robinson a photo of him and Max Q I had taken at the 2003 AHOF weekend. As John Glenn and Mrs. Glenn left on a golf cart in mid-afternoon, I quoted Scott Carpenter with a "GodSpeed John Glenn". Col. Glenn smiled.

Saw our Robert briefly, chased several autographs with Mike I., and had a nice chat with Space Angel who was more than quite knowledgeable about the shuttle program. Met up with Joan and her husband from Chicago. Made other friends and shared the collectSPACE website with others.

I had some fun with kids. I asked several, "Are you an astronaut?" After a response of "no", I countered with "But you are wearing an astronaut suit. Are you sure?" They said they were sure.

Despite the aerospace wing of the museum being closed, I enjoyed seeing the Wright Bros. Military Flyer, the Concorde, and an old friend, the FedEx jet in the aviation part of the museum.

The day was one of my all-time favorite Space Days. Although it didn't have the explosive roar and image of a launch, seeing Discovery and Enterprise nose to nose was awesome.

APG85
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posted 04-20-2012 10:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for APG85     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This is great stuff. Although I'm disappointed by the end of the Shuttle era, I'm glad Discovery is in a place where she will be appreciated and photographed by generations of enthustiasts. I'm sure she will end up on the cover of countless Smithsonian books and publications over the years and will be well cared for. The vehicle, the astronauts and the teams that maintained the machines deserved their "day in the spotlight"...

ilbasso
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posted 04-21-2012 06:15 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What an exciting, exhausting, and happy/sad week! I was at the Udvar-Hazy Center for the Discovery flybys, arrival ceremony, and Air & Space Society open house this week and wanted to share a few of the hundreds of photos I snapped. Many will not require explanation, as you've seen them in other places, but I also wanted to share a few other perspectives other than the "official" or press views.

Some of the Discovery Commanders snap their own photos of Discovery after the welcome ceremony:

Fearless Leader!

ilbasso
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posted 04-21-2012 06:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Discovery in her new home. They did in fact have to take out part of the wall to get her vertical stabilizer through the door.

Starboard side view of the crew cockpit

Interesting textures in her thermal blankets, seen in the early morning light coming through the skylight.

Charring from re-entry is visible. Also noted the raised circular patches on many tiles. I wonder if these were the retro-reflectors that many of us caught in the photos in the VAB.

Discovery has a place of honor in the museum, but she looks a little lonely to me. I can't help but anthropomorphize and project my own thoughts about what she must be feeling to be in this spot, never to fly again...

ilbasso
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posted 04-21-2012 06:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
One final shot - Joe Engle, the only person to fly both Enterprise and Discovery, in front of both vehicles!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-21-2012 06:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great photos, Jonathan! (Sorry for ruining that photo of the two orbiters by walking through the shot...)
quote:
Originally posted by ilbasso:
They did in fact have to take out part of the wall to get her vertical stabilizer through the door.
The opening was a design feature of the hangar, but there was an unexpected problem.

After Enterprise was rolled in, two horizontal support bars bridging the opening were supposed to have been bolted in place. Instead, the workers welded them, something that wasn't discovered until very early on Thursday morning.

Saws and some brute force were needed to break free the bars, which held up Enterprise's exit by about 45 minutes. But the opening itself was designed for the orbiters' vertical stabilizer...

APG85
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posted 04-21-2012 06:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for APG85     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The live web cam from the Hazy Center shows a lot of activity around Discovery i.e. stands, jacks, equipment, the side hatch appears to be open, etc. Any idea what they are doing? Is the tail-cone going to be removed?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-21-2012 06:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The tailcone is being removed (it is needed to ferry Endeavour), the crew cabin is being configured as desired by the Smithsonian (e.g. some of the middeck seats are being placed in the stowed for orbit position to de-clutter the deck) and the vent doors are being closed.

The forward attach point "tipi" is being removed, too.

Glint
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posted 04-22-2012 09:50 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Glint   Click Here to Email Glint     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by GoesTo11:
That's one of the most gorgeous shots I've seen yet, from anyone. Awesome. (And thanks for linking a "big" version).
Thanks for your kind words. I've also created a 3-D version, if you happen to have a pair of red/cyan glasses handy.

Discovery Lands at Dulles

"3-D Anaglyph of Discovery/SCA and T-38"

GoesTo11
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posted 04-22-2012 10:04 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for GoesTo11   Click Here to Email GoesTo11     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Glint:
I've also created a 3-D version, if you happen to have a pair of red/cyan glasses handy.
And I actually do!

/spacegeek'd

ilbasso
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posted 04-22-2012 11:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Outstanding anaglyph! Like like like!!

onesmallstep
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posted 04-22-2012 10:28 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for onesmallstep   Click Here to Email onesmallstep     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
To add to the posts already made by fellow cSers; it was indeed a memorable two days for me at Udvar-Hazy, not soon forgotten. I saw a lot of sights (and heard sounds) never to be repeated. My highlights:
  • Announcing Discovery's procession and astronaut escort by playing the double sonic boom she made on her last reentry.

  • John Glenn standing for both the Navy and Marine hymns at the podium.

  • NASA Administrator Bolden and JSC Director Coats signing autographs and talking to a young boy in an orange shuttle suit. As Capt. Coats signed my STS-41D launch cover, I could not help thinking
    how Dr. Judy Resnik would have been proud to be in attendance on this special day.

  • As Discovery was towed in, she appeared at home at last, and applause followed — but minutes later she backed up again, with remarks like 'She's going back to Florida!'

  • Our tireless founder and Editor with (five? six?) cameras around his neck capturing every angle of the ceremony.

  • Meeting Joe Allen, Bill Readdy, Frank Culbertson and other shuttle astronauts at the Air & Space Society members' preview on the 20th. All were busy and patient with the people who came up for questions or autographs. One who had the biggest crowd was Ken Reightler, who was by Discovery's entry hatch. Readdy took over from him for the rest of the morning.

  • Seeing the 'support' crews and people behind the scenes get their due; SCA pilot Bob Zimmerman shook my hand and I told him next week it's New York's turn-he replied he was a New Yorker born and bred. A pad tech also signed autographs and explained his role during launch.

  • Seeing Discovery in one place with Mercury, Gemini and Apollo capsules nearby-a true timeline of space history.
Now it's on to NY for Enterprise; let's see if Endeavour and Atlantis can top the last few days in Virginia!

thump
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posted 04-23-2012 01:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for thump   Click Here to Email thump     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Any ideas why Piers Sellers was not announced (or did I just miss his name?) doing the ceremony on Thursday? I talked to him for a few seconds as he was leaving, so I know he was there, maybe a late arrival?

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 04-23-2012 02:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Sellers, as far as I know, was there as a guest, not as an astronaut. When he walked through the "cattle chute" with the other guests and astronauts back to the museum, I called out, "Mr. Sellers, Mr. Sellers, a moment, please."

He signed for me and said, "How did you know it was me?" (He was wearing a business suit, not a blue flight suit.)

I replied: "You're wearing a name tag, sir."

I watched the video Friday night on CSPAN and Sellers' name was not announced. Neither was announced Ken Cockrell, though he was there in a blue flight suit. Hence my confusion between Ken Cockrell and Ken Cameron, the latter who was announced.

Glint
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posted 04-23-2012 09:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Glint   Click Here to Email Glint     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Another astronaut not in a flight suit at Thursday's ceremony was Tom Jones. Saw him plowing though the crowd wearing a business suit. Later, during the introduction, he wasn't sitting with the rest of the guests when he was introduced as an "honorary Discovery astronaut." The monitor screens showed the camera panning and searching for him in vain. I guess he either didn't get there in time, or maybe security wouldn't let him into the VIP section.

thump
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posted 04-24-2012 08:03 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for thump   Click Here to Email thump     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I saw Tom Jones when he arrived at the museum, and he was wearing his flight jacket at that time...

ilbasso
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posted 04-24-2012 08:49 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Tom was there. He was an "honorary Discovery astronaut" since he never flew in Discovery. He is very active in events at the NASM and Udvar-Hazy. I feel like I run into him every time I'm there, whether or not it's for a space-related event.

Here's Tom and his wife in front of Enterprise on Thursday:

Glint
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posted 04-24-2012 09:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Glint   Click Here to Email Glint     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
How interesting. He's wearing his blue flight jacket and carrying the suit jacket.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 04-24-2012 11:03 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I suspect many of the astronauts were in business attire because of the Thursday morning reception, then changed into their flight suits. I was told by Garry that Kathy Thornton was so attired, but at the dedication ceremony itself she was wearing a blue flight suit.

As well, we tend to use the astronauts' honorifics, their military titles, or 'doctor' this or 'professor that.' After hearing, "Dr. Jones, Dr. Jones," I had flashbacks to the second Indiana Jones movie with his sidekick Short Round....

FFrench
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posted 04-24-2012 06:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for FFrench     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ilbasso:
Interesting textures in her thermal blankets, seen in the early morning light coming through the skylight.
This is instantly one of my favorite ever shuttle photos. Reminds me of African Kuba textiles; you captured something quite special there.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-24-2012 06:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by ilbasso:
Also noted the raised circular patches on many tiles. I wonder if these were the retro-reflectors that many of us caught in the photos in the VAB.
Those circles are to mark the injection location for the dimethylethoxysilane that waterproofs the tiles. The first injection is made after a tile's first flight, so new tiles are absent the circles.

The retro-reflectors were decals that were removed before Discovery shipped to the Smithsonian. They were applied as part of the National Park Service's recordation effort to take exact measurements of the orbiter.

328KF
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posted 04-24-2012 08:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Congratulations to General Daley and the Smithsonian for the what was probably the biggest day in the museum's history. I was lucky enough to be there in D.C. a total of three days for the flyovers, the exchange ceremony, and to take my family to see Discovery being worked on in the hangar.

Here are some of my photos from the week and some recollections to add to what the others have posted.

Discovery awaiting the festivities

Chris Ferguson speaking to the crowd before the main event with Enterprise in the background. Charlie Bolden and John Grunsfeld also spoke.

Astronauts headed out to join Discovery

328KF
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posted 04-24-2012 08:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Discovery being towed to her new home, accompanied by the astronauts, led by Bo Bobko.

Bobko, Joe Engle, Mike Coats, Fred Gregory, Bob Cabana, Ken Cameron

Discovery's wing passed right over my head!

328KF
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posted 04-24-2012 08:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for 328KF   Click Here to Email 328KF     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Going into the hangar...

Enterprise makes way for Discovery

Discovery in her new home ready for her new mission

I had the thought that a great shot would have been to have Joe Allen right here with the shuttle and the MMU in the background... oh well.

I had the great opportunity to say hello to Mike Coats, the pilot on STS-29, which was the first shuttle launch and first landing I ever got to see in person. I also got a quick photo with Senator Glenn... it was a real honor to have him there and the astronauts gave him a standing ovation when he was introduced.

But the real highlight of the day for me was meeting all of the SCA crew. We found them wandering through the museum and they took the time to chat with my friend and I for awhile. Henry Taylor was particularly kind enough to track down Jeff Moultrie so we could thank him for a great show bringing Discovery over the capital. Those guys have one of the coolest flying jobs in the world.

As we were parting, one of them said, "Oh, I almost forgot..." reached in his pocket and pulled out a couple of their crew patches they brought with them on the flight, and handed us each one. That made my day.

Here is Enterprise back together with NASA 905 awaiting the trip to NYC. Hopefully I get back home from work in time to see her take off!

ilbasso
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posted 04-24-2012 10:17 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by FFrench:
This is instantly one of my favorite ever shuttle photos. Reminds me of African Kuba textiles; you captured something quite special there.
Francis, if you'll PM me with your email address, I will be glad to send you a full-resolution copy of the photo.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 05-01-2012 01:37 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here's the Smithsonian's newly-released highlight video from the ferry flight and delivery of Discovery:

ilbasso
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posted 05-01-2012 10:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ilbasso   Click Here to Email ilbasso     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Oops... the captions call John Glenn "Former Discovery Pilot"...

Robert Pearlman
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posted 05-08-2012 10:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Johnson Space Center has now posted on Flickr many more ground and air-to-air photos of Discovery's ferry flight:


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