Interesting article time lining the about-to-be-shelved Space Shuttle program.
The orbiters have always intrigued me. It started when Pop took us to Huntsville one summer and we got to see OV-101 Enterprise as it was residing at Marshall Space Flight Center undergoing structural testing. It was never meant for space travel, thus many parts were not on this particular machine, like engines, various radars, and the heat shield.
We were allowed to walk under it and take a really long look at the exterior.
It’s hard to believe that the initial atmospheric approach and landing tests were in 1977.
Interesting tidbit. OV-101 was to be named Constitution. A write-in campaign from fans of the Star Trek TV show swayed then president Gerald Ford to name the craft Enterprise.
Fascinating machines. It’s sad to see them retired. However I am interested to see the next generation of vehicles -developed by private industry, a la Scaled Composites, Bigelow Aerospace, SpaceX, or Boeing – that will go forward.
I sincerely hope I am alive to see Americans return to the moon. It’s something we should have accomplished long ago.
More in regards to the future of NASA and the American manned space flight programs can be found here.