The last of NASA’s space shuttles to fly, Atlantis, is the last to move to its new retirement home, just 10 miles away at Kennedy Space Center’s main tourist site. A look at each of the shuttles in the order they flew, including the test model.
_ Enterprise: Shuttle prototype used in jetliner-drop tests over Edwards Air Force Base in California in 1977 and never flew in space. Originally on display at a Smithsonian Institution hangar in Virginia, it was flown to New York City this past April and moved into the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in June. Suffered minor damage to vertical stabilizer, or tail, earlier this week from Superstorm Sandy, according to NASA.
_ Columbia: Destroyed during descent on Feb. 1, 2003, after 28 missions stretching back to 1981. All seven astronauts were killed. The wreckage is stored in NASA's Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center for research purposes.
_ Challenger: Destroyed during launch on Jan. 28, 1986, after 10 missions dating to 1983. All seven astronauts were killed. Wreckage is buried in a pair of abandoned missile silos at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.
_ Discovery: Moved to Smithsonian Institution hangar in northern Virginia in April after 39 missions dating to 1984.
_ Atlantis: Moved Friday to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Center after 33 missions stretching back to 1985.
_ Endeavour: Flown to Los Angeles in September and moved into California Science Center in October after 25 missions dating to 1992. It was the replacement for space shuttle Challenger.
By Andrew P. Napolitano
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