Friday, January 20, 2012

Atlantis moved to assembly building at KSC

Kennedy Space Center crews this morning moved the shuttle orbiter Atlantis into the Vehicle Assembly Building at Kennedy Space Center, as work continues to ready the retired fleet for museum display.

A tug pulled Atlantis out of its hangar, Orbiter Processing Facility-2, at 8:27 a.m. and it was parked in the 525-foot tall assembly building's transfer aisle at 9:40 a.m.

Atlantis will remain in the transfer aisle for about two weeks near Endeavour, which is parked in the building's High Bay 4.

Endeavour is expected to take Atlantis' place in the processing hangar Feb. 1.

Atlantis will remain in the VAB until March, when it swaps places again with Discovery, which is now in Orbiter Processing Facility-1.

That move will mark Discovery's final exit from a hangar at KSC, in preparation for a planned April ferry flight to a Smithsonian Institution display site in Chantilly, Va.

A tail cone was fitted on Discovery this week, marking the last major processing milestone before the flight.

Endeavour will fly to the California Science Center later this year. Atlantis will move down the road to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex late this year or early next year.

IMAGE: Via @NASAKennedy Tweet.

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