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  Intrepid Sea, Air & Space: shuttle Enterprise (Page 1)

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Author Topic:   Intrepid Sea, Air & Space: shuttle Enterprise
Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-12-2011 07:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Editor's note: This topic is intended for updates and discussion about space shuttle Enterprise's display at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City.

For general discussion about exhibiting NASA's retired space shuttles or about other venues, please see the appropriate other topics.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 04-12-2011 07:36 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum release
Space Shuttle Enterprise to Land at Intrepid!

Intrepid is thrilled to have been chosen as the new home for Enterprise (OV-101), the first Space Shuttle Orbiter, and to help perpetuate the legacy of one of our country's greatest technological achievements.

More than 150,000 people signed the petition to help bring a space shuttle to New York City, and we expect more than a million people a year will come to Intrepid to see, first hand, this vehicle that advanced our nation's exploration of space.

We are grateful to our elected leaders who worked tirelessly on our behalf, including Senators Schumer and Gillibrand, Congressman Jerrold Nadler and the entire New York State Congressional Delegation; New York Governors Andrew Cuomo and David Paterson; New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg; Council Speaker Christine Quinn; George Fertitta and NYC & Co.; Bill Rudin and the Association for a Better New York; and the 19 Congressional Medal of Honor Recipients, 12 Distinguished Marines and the many others who wrote letters and signed the petition to NASA.

We are honored that NASA has recognized that New York will be an outstanding home for Enterprise (OV-101) and that the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum will create an amazing exhibit to showcase her. Our congratulations also go out to the other museums and institutions where Discovery, Endeavour and Atlantis will have new homes.

Lou Chinal
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posted 04-19-2011 03:01 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Lou Chinal   Click Here to Email Lou Chinal     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It should be quite a show! I plan to photograph it from every angle.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 05-16-2011 10:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Former USS Intrepid crew member and space shuttle Enterprise pilot Richard Truly wrote an op ed for the New York Post.
Just as Apollo 7, 8, 9 and 10 made the triumph of Apollo 11 and Neil Armstrong's "one small step for man" possible, it was Enterprise's test flights that led to the Space Shuttle's amazing achievements.

The International Space Station, the Hubble telescope and our flagship missions to the outer planets would be mere daydreams if not for Enterprise.

A trailblazer and world traveler, she'll feel right at home on Pier 86 in New York.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 06-01-2011 02:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Writing a guest column for the New Jersey Star Ledger, Bill Tansey III, chairman of the board of trustees of Liberty Science Center, endorsed sending Enterprise to the Intrepid.
The Enterprise will represent a whole generation of innovation that delivered mankind well beyond presumed boundaries. When fully dressed with the Intrepid Museum's interactive exhibits, a new generation of curious young scientists will join the endless quest for knowledge about the universe.

GACspaceguy
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posted 08-27-2011 11:26 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just finished reading the NASA Office of Inspector General's review of NASA's selection of display locations for the space shuttle orbiters. In the document starting on page 24 it give some insight as to how the orbiters will be displayed.

I thought I would post excerpts from that report here for those who would not have read the report or made it to the final few pages.

Enterprise is slated for the Intrepid.

NASA plans to transport Enterprise from the Udvar-Hazy Center to John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York City in April 2012 after it delivers Discovery to the Udvar-Hazy Center.

Enterprise will be stored in a temporary, climate-controlled tent inside a JFK hangar, where it will be available for limited viewing until March 2014. It will then be transported by barge to the Intrepid.

The Intrepid submitted its logistics plan to NASA in June 2011, which was followed by a NASA site visit. Its exhibit and finance plans are due in August 2011. Title transfer and initial funding are due in January 2012, when NASA will begin preparing the vehicle for ferrying.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 09-29-2011 10:49 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The New York Times reports the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum is looking to change the location of its planned exhibit of Enterprise.
When New York made its pitch for one of NASA’s decommissioned space shuttles, one of its selling points was location: a glistening berth on the Hudson River alongside the aircraft carrier that is home to the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum.

But five months after the Intrepid was awarded the shuttle Enterprise, museum officials have turned their attention from the end of the newly revamped pier to a parking lot on 12th Avenue, across the cacophonous West Side Highway. They envision converting the lot, which is surrounded by H & H Bagels, a car wash, storage warehouses and a strip club, into a space-themed museum that would serve as the home of the Enterprise and draw as many as one million visitors a year.

Aesthetics aside, the plan has several obstacles to clear. One problem is that the Intrepid does not own the parking lot; the State Department of Transportation does. Another is that the property, in Hell’s Kitchen, is zoned for manufacturing, not a museum. And perhaps the biggest hurdle is the many millions of dollars that would have to be raised to build this new home for the Enterprise, which was a prototype for the space shuttles but never flew into space.

Jay Chladek
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posted 09-29-2011 02:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Makes me wonder if the recent impact of the tropical storm might have them rethinking their approach of putting Enterprise that close to the waterline. Intrepid is pretty tall by comparison (it is an aircraft carrier after all), but storm surge or flooding could cause a few problems to the pier location I would think.

mikej
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posted 09-29-2011 05:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mikej   Click Here to Email mikej     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here's a Google Maps shot of an area "surrounded by H & H Bagels, a car wash, storage warehouses and a strip club." It doesn't appear to be a parking lot, but it does at least seem to be within a block or two of the described area.

If you zoom out one or two steps (I zoomed in far enough so that the buildings would be labeled), you'll see that the proposed area is only a very small distance from the river.

I don't know that this location would be substantially safer in a storm surge.

onesmallstep
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posted 09-30-2011 07:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for onesmallstep   Click Here to Email onesmallstep     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The area is, in fact, a parking lot. It faces the bow of Intrepid separated by a wide, four-lane highway. To avoid crossing the street itself, you can take a walkway from the esplanade next to Intrepid and go to the other side; the walkway is a good vantage point for photographs of the pier area, especially during the annual Fleet Week celebrations.

I'm biased, of course, having a shuttle so near (although I made the trip to see Enterprise at Udvar-Hazy), so I was surprised to see the revised exhibit plans in an artist's sketch at a recent event featuring the STS-135 crew. It will make for an impressive display, with Enterprise wheels-down and seeming to glide to a landing on the nearby pier (an arresting hook would work!). If they keep the walkway (or add a similar one), then they would have no problem with foot traffic. In fact, they would probably have to give out timed access tickets as it would be THE big attraction — not that the Intrepid itself will be ignored. I hope that they can work things out in the end.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-09-2011 10:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The New York Times reports that the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum is seeking $40 million in public financing to build the new museum that will house space shuttle Enterprise.
Officials of the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in Manhattan have taken their pitch for government support of the proposed museum out from behind closed doors. To bolster their appeal, they have armed themselves with a study estimating that a museum focused on science and space exploration would draw hundreds of thousands of additional visitors to the city and create about 1,200 jobs. The study was commissioned by the museum.

On Friday, Matt Woods, a senior vice president of the Intrepid museum, spoke at a public forum in Harlem to ask a panel of economic development planners to make the Enterprise building a priority for state assistance. He said the project could be "catalytic" and could "reinforce the position of the entire state as a science and space destination."

Mr. Woods did not ask for a specific amount of help, but he said that the Intrepid hoped to "leverage public and private funds equally." Afterward, he said the estimated cost of the project was $85 million.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-09-2011 10:17 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
These images show the first concept for the new museum the Intrepid plans for Enterprise. In my opinion, this would appear to be a significant upgrade over what was proposed when Enterprise was to be placed on the pier.

GACspaceguy
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posted 11-09-2011 04:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Wow! Fantastic, when can I buy tickets?

Jay Chladek
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posted 11-11-2011 09:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As for me, the building design looks like a cross between the Sydney operahouse and the stern of the Titanic!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-23-2011 02:30 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
collectSPACE
NASA signs over shuttle Enterprise to New York City's Intrepid museum

NASA's space shuttle Enterprise will land next summer on the flight deck of the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City. The World War II aircraft-carrier-turned-museum took over ownership of the prototype winged orbiter on Tuesday (Nov. 22) in preparation for Enterprise's delivery in 2012.

NASA's Lynn Cline, the deputy associate administrator for human exploration and operations, turned over the title for Enterprise to Intrepid president Susan Marenoff-Zausner. The contract signing was publicly announced only after it was done, unlike the high-profile title-signing ceremony that was held last month to transfer shuttle Endeavour to the California Science Center in Los Angeles...

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 11-23-2011 04:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Since we have to declare most, if not all our vacation time at the beginning of the new year, I will be telling The Powers That Be that I need a few days off in April, and that I will be flexible with the exact dates. Looking forward to seeing Enterprise/747 land at JFK, perhaps even covering it for some organization (hint, hint....)

Personally, it would be neat to have Enterprise glide into JFK. Realistically, no, not at one of the busiest airports in the nation, unless it's at 3 a.m.!

Notwithstanding, between Haise, Fullerton, Engle and Truly, who would be CDR and PLT, and who would be along for the ride in MS seats they would have to install? (Although, when Enterprise does arrive at JFK, it would be nice if they arrived as well, seated in the 747.)

Gilbert
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posted 11-23-2011 05:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Gilbert   Click Here to Email Gilbert     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
That is a very appealing design. I look forward to seeing Enterprise in its new home.

Fezman92
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posted 11-30-2011 11:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fezman92   Click Here to Email Fezman92     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Will we able to see the flight plan from DC-NYC? I live roughly halfway between them and would like to know my chances of seeing it fly over. Granted if I do, I won't be able to see the shuttle unless it is flying at a somewhat low height.

I live an hour from Dover and an hour or so from McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst and I see the tankers, transports and A-10s flying around at somewhat low heights. The A-10s love to fly just above treetop level.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 11-30-2011 12:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The flight plan will rely somewhat on the weather that day, so advance notice of specific flyover cities may be limited to a couple of hours. NASA has said however, that it wants to maximize the opportunities for the public to see the shuttle in flight, so the expectation is that the path will be well publicized.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 11-30-2011 01:50 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Can't wait to see what they come up with. I would love for the SCA/Enterprise to make a refuelling stop - or just a plain stop - at Joint Base McGuire/Dix/Lakehurst.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 12-09-2011 06:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum advisory
U.S. Senator Charles Schumer, Rep. Jerrold Nadler, New York State Assembly Members Richard Gottfried and Michael DenDekker and other New York City elected officials and civic leaders will join NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver at a ceremony presenting the title for the space shuttle Enterprise to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum on Sunday, December 11 from 1:00 to 1:30 p.m. at Pier 86 (46th Street and 12th Avenue) in Manhattan.

Intrepid museum president Susan Marenoff-Zausner and former crew members of the USS Intrepid will accept the title on behalf of the museum. Several local Boy Scouts of America groups will also attend the ceremony.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 12-12-2011 08:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
collectSPACE
New York City's Intrepid museum celebrates ownership of space shuttle Enterprise

NASA's space shuttle prototype, Enterprise, now belongs to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York City.

Space agency leaders and local elected officials marked the shuttle's transfer of ownership, which took place last month, during a ceremony held Sunday (Dec. 11) onboard the aircraft-carrier-turned-museum.

"Let there be no bones about it, the Intrepid now officially owns a space shuttle and that's going to stay for a very long time to come," Senator Charles Schumer said during the event...

Robert Pearlman
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posted 12-14-2011 01:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum wrote on Twitter:
SNEAK PEEK! Shuttle Enterprise will be displayed on the Flight Deck beginning Summer '12, here's how...

GACspaceguy
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posted 12-18-2011 08:31 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for GACspaceguy   Click Here to Email GACspaceguy     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Not sure it will end up this way but it looks like you will be able to walk underneath it with gear down. Very cool!

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 01-20-2012 02:39 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
According to Intrepid's website, Enterprise is to be flown to JFK this spring; transported by barge and placed on its flight deck in the space shuttle pavilion, open to visitors by the summer; and be permanently placed in the new space center by 2014 or 2015.

Fezman92
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posted 01-20-2012 03:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Fezman92   Click Here to Email Fezman92     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Where are they going to put the planes on the flight deck now?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 01-20-2012 03:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
According to the Intrepid, there is room to display Enterprise and the aircraft on the flight deck.

Jay Chladek
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posted 01-24-2012 06:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like a tent on the flight deck to me (with a bubble on top for Enterprise's tail). It sort of reminds me of the half cylindrical enclosure the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Alabama was planning for if they got Enterprise (the Orbiter Protective Enclosure). At least somebody took possible wind and deck shifting concerns into account by securely attaching Enterprise to the deck via the bipod strut attachment point and not placing it on its nose gear. Given that the gear was removed and modified for testing of a possible telescoping nose strut, that is a good thing.

It reminds me a little bit of the "temporary" Space Camp enclosure buildings we had in Huntsville in the 1980s (which became the Aviation Challenge facility in the 1990s). Those enclosures were anchored pretty heavily into the ground on concrete bases though while this "tent" will have to be attached to the deck of an aircraft carrier. This is going to be interesting.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 01-25-2012 08:13 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Assuming an on time delivery of Discovery to the Smithsonian, then Enterprise is expected to depart for JFK Airport on April 23 or 24.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-08-2012 09:23 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum wrote on Facebook:
The first bits and pieces of our future space shuttle display have started to arrive! We accepted delivery of some cockpit instrumentation, some of which may have originally been installed in the shuttle Enterprise during the Approach and Landing Test missions back in 1977.

The instruments had been re-purposed by NASA for simulator use and recently made surplus. This was a lucky find indeed. These instruments will be installed in a new display which will open when Enterprise arrives this summer.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 02-18-2012 03:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thirty-five years to the day after it was first installed for the Approach and Landing Test Program's first captive flight, the tailcone was fitted back onto Enterprise on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2012 for its upcoming ferry flight from the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia to the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City.

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-01-2012 05:47 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
collectSPACE
Space shuttle Enterprise lands in NYC on April 23

NASA's space shuttle Enterprise, which never flew in space but did pave the way for the United States' historic 30-year shuttle program, will arrive in New York on April 23, the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum announced on Thursday (March 1).

The prototype orbiter's arrival in the Big Apple will start its journey to a new display at the Intrepid, a converted World War II aircraft carrier-turned-museum complex.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 03-08-2012 05:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On their Facebook page, the museum notes:
Due to space and security restrictions, Enterprise’s April 23 landing at JFK will not be open to the public. Stay tuned for news on events that are open to the public, including where you will be able to see Enterprise in the sky on April 23 and when you can visit her on our Flight Deck this summer!

Robert Pearlman
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posted 03-20-2012 12:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Intrepid Sea Air & Space Museum release
Enterprise Behind the Scenes Update: Tailcone and ALTA pods

The Space Shuttle Enterprise, the original NASA orbiter that paved the way for America's successful space shuttle program, is currently undergoing preparations for its April 23rd journey to its new home at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.

The Enterprise most recently underwent two key installations to help ready the shuttle for aerial transport.

Teams at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum's Stephen F. Udvar-Hazy Center first completed the installation of inoperative orbital maneuvering system pods, which are essential for the aerial transportation of the shuttle from Washington, D.C. to its new home in New York City. These model pods, known as Approach and Landing Test Article (ALTA) pods, are required for airworthiness and will replace the weaker replicas made of wood and fiberglass that outfitted the Enterprise while on display at the National Air and Space Museum.Enterprise

ALTA pods were designed for the Enterprise and used during its approach and landing test flights in 1977. Subsequent shuttles replaced ALTA pods with orbital maneuvering system (OMS) pods which were used to steer in space.

Upon landing at Edwards Air Force Base or White Sands Missile Range after a completed mission, a space shuttle's OMS pods would be removed to clean out toxic fuel remnants and ALTA pods would be installed for the ferry flight back to Kennedy Space Center in Florida. As a result, the Enterprise's ALTA pods have flown on every single U.S. space shuttle at least once.

The ALTA pods took approximately three days to install.

The teams then completed the detailed task of installing the tailcone onto the rear of the space shuttle. The tailcone, originally designed for the Enterprise, extends the range of NASA's Shuttle Carrier 747 aircraft and smooths the aerodynamics by reducing drag and turbulence during the ferry flight.

The tailcone and ALTA pods will remain outfitted on the Enterprise for display at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.

"It is truly exciting to see the Enterprise prepare for what will be her final flight, capping off her legacy as the prototype of the United States Space Shuttle Program," said Eric Boehm, Curator, Aviation and Aircraft Restoration at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. "We are thrilled to be a part of history as we get ready to welcome Enterprise to her permanent home in New York City."

Stay tuned for more updates regarding the preparation of the Space Shuttle Enterprise and its arrival to New York City on April 23!

All dates and events are subject to change due to weather and operational delays.

Follow the journey of Enterprise to Intrepid and learn how you can help support the building of our new Science and Technology Center click here.

There will be more news about Enterprise coming to Intrepid in the coming weeks and months, so be sure to sign up for our newsletter, become an Intrepid fan on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @intrepidmuseum.

Hart Sastrowardoyo
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posted 03-20-2012 12:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Hart Sastrowardoyo   Click Here to Email Hart Sastrowardoyo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Forgive if asked before: Is the tailcone re-modified to Enterprise (e.g., no allowance for drag chute) or is it one of the modified ones?

Jay Chladek
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posted 03-21-2012 07:26 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, technically NASA only ever had two tailcones made. As I understand it, one was modified to accomodate the drag chute, one was kept stock during the years when half the shuttle fleet had drag chutes and the other half did not. Looking at the cone when it was fitted to Enterprise at Udvar Hazy, the center part of the tailcone appears seamless on the inside.

The cones are shipped partially disassembled. So I have to wonder if maybe NASA kept the original part and just made a new drag chute friendly part and bolted it in there as opposed to chopping a piece out (or the profile under the dragchute was modified slightly to clear the housing and still mate up with the base of the tail at the top of the fuselage).

Interesting!

psloss
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posted 03-21-2012 12:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for psloss   Click Here to Email psloss     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Both tailcones have supported ferries, post drag-chute modification. Not a lot of details published, but both were used simultaneously in March, 2001, for that "double-ferry" of Atlantis from Edwards after STS-98 and Columbia from Palmdale after her last OMDP.

By the way, the bit in the Intrepid museum release about removing the OMS pods and installing the ALTA pods for turnaround processing at Edwards? Yikes...

Jay Chladek
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posted 03-23-2012 10:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jay Chladek   Click Here to Email Jay Chladek     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Upon landing at Edwards Air Force Base or White Sands Missile Range after a completed mission, a space shuttle's OMS pods would be removed to clean out toxic fuel remnants and ALTA pods would be installed for the ferry flight back to Kennedy Space Center in Florida. As a result, the Enterprise's ALTA pods have flown on every single U.S. space shuttle at least once.
I believe there is a slight inaccuracy in the ALTA pod usage. To my knowledge, the operational orbiters kept their OMS pods for the ferry flights from Edwards to Kennedy Space Center after a mission because I don't believe Edwards has the proper storage facility for hypergolic systems (White Sands does, but all images I've seen of Columbia getting readied for ferry post STS-3 showed it with operational pods for the flight).

Reason being is KSC had the ability to service and store the pods properly at their hypergolic maintenance facility. Same thing with the FRCS module. So it made sense to send these modules back with the orbiter as opposed to pulling them off and sending them back separately. I have not seen any images of orbiters having their operational OMS pods removed after a mission and replaced with the ALTA pods prior to post mission ferry back from Edwards.

When an orbiter would get sent to Palmdale for orbiter modification down period (OMDP) refits, then it would be delivered both to and from Palmdale without the operational pods or the FRCS modules (a dummy module was fitted to the nose) and the ALTA pods would be fitted for flight both to Palmdale and back.

I also believe that the ALTA pods were used for the initial transport of all orbiters from Palmdale (or from Edwards after overland trucking in the case of Columbia and Challenger) to KSC. So in that sense, yes the ALTA pods have been used on all the orbiters.

Here is an image I shot of Atlantis being ferried back after the STS-117 mission on its visit to Offutt, AFB in Bellevue, NE. As you can see, it has its regular OMS pods, not the ALTA ones.

Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 31173
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 03-23-2012 11:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Intrepid updated their release to correct for the error. The new text reads:
The ALTA pods were also known as "ferry pods," and would be installed for ferry flights from Kennedy Space Center in Florida to the shuttle overhaul facility in Palmdale, California. Additionally, the pods were used when each of the newly built shuttles were initially delivered to NASA. As a result, the Enterprise's ALTA pods have flown on every single U.S. space shuttle at least once.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 31173
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 04-04-2012 09:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The EarthCam webcam offers a view of the future location for Enterprise on the deck of the Intrepid (via Ron Smith III).


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