Space shuttle embarks on 12-mile trip to LA museum
(CNN) — The space shuttle Endeavour is being moved to the California Science Center Friday, its final resting place.
The move, which started early Friday, from the Los Angeles International Airport will take about two days, as it negotiates 12 miles of Southern California’s infamous roads and highways, NASA officials say.
Once at the Los Angeles science museum, the shuttle, which had its first launch in 1992, will be on display for posterity.
Endeavour, along with Discovery, Enterprise and Atlantis, became a museum piece after NASA ended its 30-year shuttle program in July 2011. All four shuttles have been permanently retired from service.
Named for the first ship commanded by British explorer James Cook, Endeavour rolled out of an assembly plant in Palmdale, California, in 1991 at a cost of $1.7 billion. It was the baby of the shuttle fleet, built as a replacement for Challenger.
Over the next 20 years, Endeavour flew some of the most high-profile shuttle missions, covering 25 flights and nearly 123 million miles. It flew a Spacelab mission and numerous International Space Station assembly missions and rendezvoused with Russia’s Mir Space Station.
The science museum is already trumpeting the arrival of the shuttle, saying on its website that it is building a new addition to its facility and plans to begin displaying the Endeavor on October 30.