Endeavour to flyover Palmdale, Lancaster on its final ferry flight

This NASA file photo depicts Endeavour atop one of NASA’s 747 SCAs during a ferry flight from Edwards to Kennedy in 2008 following its landing at Edwards to conclude shuttle mission STS-126.

EDWARDS – Space shuttle Endeavour, mounted atop NASA’s modified 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA), will make the final ferry flight of the Space Shuttle Program era when it departs Monday, Sept. 17, from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida headed  to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

The SCA is scheduled to conduct low-level flyovers at about 1,500 feet above various landmarks in multiple cities along the planned flight path, including Palmdale, Lancaster and Rosamond, NASA officials said.

The exact timing and path of the ferry flight will depend on weather conditions, operational and safety considerations and the discretion of the pilot-in-command. Some planned flyovers or stopovers could be delayed or cancelled.

At sunrise on Sept. 17, the SCA and Endeavour will depart Kennedy’s Shuttle Landing Facility and perform a flyover of various areas of the Space Coast, including Kennedy, the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and Patrick Air Force Base.

The aircraft will fly west and conduct low flyovers of NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Mississippi and the agency’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans. As it arrives over the Texas Gulf Coast area, the SCA will perform low flyovers above various areas of Houston, Clear Lake and Galveston before landing at Ellington Field near NASA’s Johnson Space Center. Weather permitting, the SCA and Endeavour will stay at Ellington the remainder of Sept. 17 and all day Sept. 18.

At sunrise on Wednesday, Sept. 19, the aircraft will depart Houston, make a refueling stop at Biggs Army Airfield in El Paso, Texas, and conduct low-level flyovers of White Sands Test Facility near Las Cruces, N.M., and NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base in California, before landing around mid-day at Dryden.

On the morning of Sept. 20, the SCA and Endeavour will take off from Dryden and perform low-level flyovers in the Palmdale, Lancaster, and Rosamond areas before the SCA-Endeavour combo heads to Northern California for a loop around Sacramento, San Francisco and NASA’s Ames Research Center at Moffett Field near San Jose. The flight concludes with low-level flyovers of many Los Angeles sites prior to landing at Los Angeles International Airport at about 11 a.m. on Sept. 20.

After arrival at LAX, Endeavour will be removed from the SCA and spend a few weeks at a United Airlines hangar undergoing preparations for transport and display. Endeavour then will travel through Inglewood and Los Angeles city streets on a 12-mile journey from the airport to the science center, arriving in the evening on Oct. 13.

Beginning Oct. 30, the shuttle will be on display in the science center’s Samuel Oschin Space Shuttle Endeavour Display Pavilion, embarking on its new mission to commemorate past achievements in space and educate and inspire future generations of explorers.

Endeavour completed 25 missions, spent 299 days in orbit, and orbited Earth 4,671 times while traveling 122,883,151 miles.

For information about NASA’s transfer of space shuttles to museums, visit http://www.nasa.gov/transition

(Information via press release from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Dryden Flight Research Center.)


  14 comments for “Endeavour to flyover Palmdale, Lancaster on its final ferry flight

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  2. Verna Pheifer
    September 21, 2012 at 11:42 am

    I was fortunate to see the flyover at Endeavour Middle School, in Lancaster, CA along with most of the students and staff at the school. Man what a wonderful sight to see. The students and staff were elated to be able to see it as it hovered over the school for all to takae pictures of it and just look in awe at one of Americans greatest wonders.

    Then as I left there and was approaching home I got to see another spectacular view of it again as it flew over Antelope Valley College. Again it was wonderful. I am just so happy to have been able to see this marvel so I can tell my Grandchildren about this grand piece of U.S. history in the retirement making. Can’t wait to see it at the California Museum of Science once it rests there for all who missed the flyover to see.

  3. September 17, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    I spoke with the Dryden Public Affairs office at 8am this morning. At that time, I was told the expected departure from Dryden (Edwards) was scheduled for Thurs @ 7:15am with the plan to land at LAX at 11am. As you probably know, that has now been moved from Thurs to Friday. I don’t know if the take-off time is still 7:15am, they couldn’t tell me. I’ll keep checking but they said the route and all info should be in the paper (AV Press).

  4. Suz Marie
    September 9, 2012 at 11:39 pm

    The time and path of the Moffett Field flyover; does anyone know? I do not have a scanner although i understand there are some frequencies one can get on line. Thanks

  5. September 8, 2012 at 8:28 am

    Do we know the flight path & time, or where in Palmdale would be a good place to take some photos?

    • Adam Chant
      September 8, 2012 at 11:19 am

      It’s likely that it will fly over Plant 42 and NASA Site 6 so a good viewing spot would probably be at Avenue N and Sierra HWY.
      If you have a scanner you can listen to Joshua for flight status and their may even be a flight finder for it, but I don’t know the tail number to look it up.

  6. Apryl Kuhn
    September 7, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    It’s in central Lancaster; near the BLVD

  7. Letlow
    September 7, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    More than likely the flyover in Palmdale will be near Plant 42. I don’t know about the other areas. Where is your children’s school?

  8. Apryl Kuhn
    September 7, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    Is there a way of finding out if the flyover will be visible from the campus of my children’s school?

    • Sherry
      September 12, 2012 at 9:13 am

      Not to worry! Many of us have witnessed the site before, back in the 90s and early 2000’s. It will be extremely hard, if not impossible, to miss the flyover from anywhere in the valley. It’s not only massively large, but about the loudest jet you’ve ever heard. You’ll hear it lumbering overhead before you see it if you’re outside.

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