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NASA's space shuttle Discovery completes its final voyage




by Joseph Earnest  April 18, 2012

Newscast Media WASHINGTON, D.C.—Upon arrival of the space shuttle Discovery at Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver said Discovery was the longest-serving veteran of NASA's space shuttle fleet. Her maiden voyage was in 1984. She flew 39 missions, spent 365 days in space, orbited Earth 5,830 times and traveled 148,221,675 miles.


The shuttles are carried on specially-built 747 jetlines called Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, or SCA.  Below is a video demonstrating how both the shuttle and carrier function:


Video courtesy: NASA

Garver said, "To those who say our best exploration days are behind us, I must disagree. While it is wonderful to reminisce about the past, NASA continues to focus on the future. You need only admire the amazing space shuttles and their accomplishments to realize the people, organizations and nation that created them have only just begun. Vehicles with names like Orion, Dragon and Dreamchaser are being built all across the country today. They will continue and expand on the space shuttle's many accomplishments."


Garver also believes the space shuttles' 30-year history literally changed the world. NASA's greatest accomplishment and purpose, now complete, was the launch and construction of the ISS -- the science laboratory in space and our foothold to the rest of the solar system.                      Add Comments>>






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