Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Space Shuttle Discovery To Fly Piggy-Back Today

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Florida -  In yet another heartbreaking moment for many Space Coast residents, the Space Shuttle Discovery will make one last piggy-back ride fly-over on Tuesday, April 17, 2012, on her way to the National Aeronautics and Space Museum in Washington, D.C. 

The piggy-back departure of the Space Shuttle Discovery on a modified Boeing 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, is scheduled for 7:00 a.m. 


The intended path is to take off from Kennedy Space Center and fly south to Patrick Air Force Base.  Then the aircraft will turn north and fly over the Shuttle Landing Facility in Merritt Island, Florida at approximately 7:20 a.m. for one final time before flying to Washington, D.C. 
Between 10 and 11 a.m. EDT, Discovery will fly in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area to give the public an opportunity to see Discovery before it lands at Dulles International Airport. 

Though the exact route and timing of the flight depend on weather and operational constraints, the SCA is expected to fly at approximately 1,500 feet near a variety of national landmarks in the Washington area, including the National Mall, Reagan National Airport, National Harbor and the Smithsonian's Udvar-Hazy Center. 

If you take pictures, feel free to post them on the Space Shuttle Discovery Flickr Group and if you’re on Twitter, you can tweet them using the hashtag #spottheshuttle. 

District of Columbia

  • The National Mall, including Memorial Bridge, the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument and the east end
  • Hains Point/East Potomac Park, south of the Jefferson Memorial and the 14th Street Bridge
  • Southwest Waterfront Park


  • Long Bridge Park, 475 Long Bridge Drive, Arlington
  • Old Town Alexandria Waterfront
  • Gravelly Point, just off the George Washington Parkway, near National Airport


  • National Harbor, just off the Woodrow Wilson Bridge in Prince George’s County
PHOTO CREDIT: NASA file photo.