At a milestone, the retired space shuttle Endeavor’s Los Angeles home will land at the Permanent Museum on Wednesday, imagining the spacecraft that appears to be finally ready for launch.
Of the three surviving space shuttles, Endeavor will be the only one whose nose points to the stars, and the last remaining surviving authentic orange will be fully attached to the external fuel tank and twin solid rocket boosters.
Once completed, the exhibition is believed to be the world’s tallest vertical spacecraft display. The construction of the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center building at the California Science Center will probably take three years, but the interior building will take even longer. The opening date has not been announced.
The construction process will be complicated. About halfway through the construction of the building, the shuttle will be moved to the structure, and the rest of the building will be finished.
The astronauts are pleased that the Science Center has designed the exhibition in a way that will enable members of the public to see it. The last spacecraft was built in a way that relatively few have seen before.
“It will be very impressive,” said Greg Chamitov, an astronaut who flew twice, including the last flight to Endeavor, in an interview. “When you see the shuttle on the launchpad, and you’re standing under it – it’s just a fantastic perspective.”
Jeffrey Rudolph, president of the California Science Center, said most people who saw the spacecraft launch did so from afar.
“This is the view we’re going to give people – like, they’re looking at this shuttle stack based on the launchpad. And it’s almost as huge as how huge it is,” Rudolph said. “And that, I think, will inspire a lot of people. There are some experiences around the world where you see something of that scale, that’s real, and that’s important for our exploration of the universe.”
The overall exhibition will be more dramatic than the current temporary exhibition, where Endeavor is displayed horizontally, as if it had just descended from the classroom. The reusable shuttle is already 122 feet long (the same length as a Boeing 737 aircraft). The outer fuel tank is even longer – 153.8 feet long, 15 feet taller than the building.
With the addition of twin solid rocket boosters and a fuel tank, adding to the shuttle will make the overall look “more than double that size. And then it will disappear from you, the size of the building. It’s going to be very impressive,” Chamitoff said.
Chamitoff said he would be more dramatic than the show, for example, the Apollo show at the Apollo showcasing astronauts launching Saturn V rockets to the moon, mostly fuel tanks, with only a small proportion of spacecraft returning to Earth. . There are three remaining authentic Saturn V rockets on display, and they are all displayed horizontally.
“Whatever capsules are flying today, be they Russian or SpaceX, you can fit three of them inside the shuttle cargo bay,” Chamitoff said. In contrast, with the space shuttle, “so many vehicles make it into space, and then return to Earth.”
“It simply came to our notice then that we were flying.
The cost and technical difficulty of doing so is due to the fact that no other museum has performed the space shuttle or Saturn V rocket vertically.
To build a home as Endeavor prepares for launch, Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center 20 stories will emerge. The building was challenging to design: a typical building of that size has floors, walls, and columns. But the entire space shuttle needs a structure that leaves the interior open to display the shuttle, Rudolph said.
“We don’t think it’s the easiest way to do it,” Rudolph said. “What we think is the best way to show it, will have the biggest impact on everyone watching it, but especially on young people, and create the spark that makes them dream and think that one day they want to go into space. Take part. “
Once the lower part of the building is completed – a process that will take about a year and a half – the shuttle will be installed in a process that will probably take three to four months, Rudolph said. The assembly will begin with an assembly known as solid rocket boosters, then an external fuel tank, and then a shuttle, full space shuttle stack.
This is the first time a shuttle designed to fly into space has assembled vertically outside Florida’s Kennedy Space Center, Rudolph said. (The test orbiter enterprise, which had never flown into space, was once assembled in a vertical full stack at Huntsville, Ala’s Marshall Space Flight Center, and another time at Vandenberg Air Force Base in Santa Barbara County.)
Once the building housing Endeavor is completed, more aircraft and spacecraft will be moved inside, and museum officials are still working on how long it will take. The aerospace wing will have three multi-level galleries – each for air, space and shuttle – which will cover four floors.
One of the new exhibits will be a 50-foot front of the Boeing 747 – which includes a typical hump on the plane – delivered to the Science Center from Korean Air.
The estimated लागत 400 million shuttle project will reshape the community horizon just south of downtown Los Angeles, home to the California Science Center, a state-run museum with free access to its roots 110 years ago, as a site. Performing agricultural and industrial projects. The site became the California Museum of Science and Industry in 1951, and reopened in 1998 as the California Science Center.
To date, donors have committed 280 million to build and sustain new museum branches; The remaining $ 120 million will be raised over the next few years, the museum said.
The new aerospace museum wing is named after Samuel Oschin, the late Los Angeles businessman and philanthropist, also named after the Griffith Observatory constellation and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Cancer Institute. Financial contributions from the Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Oschin Family Foundation have led to the transformation of the new museum building, museum officials said.
Endeavor has been housed in a temporary exhibition building at the California Science Center for the past decade. In 2012, Endeavor made its final cross-country voyage, captivating millions of Californians, as it flew in a Boeing 747, crossing the Golden Gate Bridge and the Hollywood sign, before finally crossing the three-day, 12-mile trek on the 405 freeway. And its new home across the street from Los Angeles and Inglewood.
The 15-story Orange Outdoor Fuel Tank arrived on the voyage in 2016 via the Panama Canal and the Marina del Rey, as well as before cutting wood from the road to the Science Center. Solid rocket boosters have not yet arrived at the science center, and are being stored elsewhere.
The arrival of the spacecraft in California was a return home to Endeavor, which shut down Rockwell International’s production line in Palmdale in 1991, replacing the Challenger, which exploded after launch in 1986, killing all seven occupants. Southern California has played a key role in the development of shuttles, pumping millions of dollars into the economy and becoming a source of pride for the region’s aerospace industry.
The idea of bringing a space shuttle to the science center has been on the drawing board for a generation. Ken Phillips, aerospace curator at the California Science Center, proposed in 1991 that they receive a spacecraft at some point when they retire, and in 1992, there were blueprints showing Rudolph sitting upright in a retired circle.
The space shuttle program was launched after the Apollo era mission to land on the moon. In developing reusable spacecraft along the vast cargo bay, spacecraft played a key role in building the International Space Station, which began decades of human presence in space – uninterrupted – since its first long-term inhabitants arrived in 2000. .
Hopefully, Chamitoff said, “from that point on, people will always live in space, and Earth will not be limited to the planet.”
The next shuttle, Columbia, was set for retirement after the re-entry disruption in 2003, and NASA re-prioritized missions to complete the construction of the International Space Station. The last landing from Endeavor space was on Wednesday, exactly 11 years ago, with astronaut Mark Kelly, now a U.S. senator from Arizona, in command; Only then did another shuttle take off, Atlantis, ending a 30-year space shuttle mission.
NASA has developed the Artemis program to bring astronauts back to the moon after this decade, which will be a stepping stone for distant missions, including Mars. The goals will be to build a spacecraft called the Gateway into lunar orbit, where astronauts will be able to conduct research and travel to the lunar surface; And to build the Artemis base camp on the lunar surface for astronauts to live and work.
“What’s coming is just unbelievable,” Chamitoff said. “It’s very exciting to return to the moon, build permanent facilities and start learning what it’s like to live and thrive on another planet’s body.”
Chamitov believes the Endeavor exhibition will be an inspiration to school children. The Canadian-born astronaut spent many years of his youth in California, graduating from San Jose High School in 1980 and earning a degree in electrical engineering at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and a degree in aeronautical engineering at Caltech. In aeronautics and astronomy at MIT.
So what advice would he give to school children who would one day become astronauts?
“Follow your passions … The easiest thing to do is to work hard on what you love,” said Chamitoff. “There are many different areas that contribute to space exploration, be it engineering or any kind of science; It could be medicine. ”
“The main thing is, you know, when you decide to do something, do it to the best of your ability. That’s what will get you there,” said Chamitoff.