Space Shuttle Endeavour came home to California today, and we were able to join the festivities. Endeavour, like all the orbiters, was born in Palmdale, California. Endeavour is the “baby” of the now-retired fleet, first flying 20 years ago.
One of NASA’s specially modified 747 airliners gave Endeavour a high-speed piggyback. Amazingly, only 7 bolts hold the orbiter to the airliner. On Friday the 747 will fly Endeavour to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) where it will stay until mid October. At that point it will be towed through the streets of LA to its final home at the California Science Center.
Published by Kirsten W. Larson
Kirsten W. Larson used to work with rocket scientists at NASA. Now she writes books for curious kids. She’s the author of WOOD, WIRE, WINGS: Emma Lilian Todd Invents an Airplane, illustrated by Tracy Subisak (Calkins Creek, 2020), A TRUE WONDER: The Comic Book Her Who Changed Everything, illustrated by Katy Wu (Clarion, 2021); THE FIRE OF STARS: The Life and Brilliance of the Woman Who Discovered What Stars are Made of, illustrated by Katherine Roy (Chronicle, 2023), THIS IS HOW YOU KNOW, illustrated by Cornelia Li (Little, Brown, 2024) and THE LIGHT OF RESISTANCE, illustrated by Barbara McClintock (Roaring Brook, 2023) along with 25 other nonfiction books for kids. She's a geek, LEGO lover, and sock enthusiast. Find her at kirsten-w-larson.com or on Twitter/Instagram @KirstenWLarson.
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13 thoughts on “Welcome home, Space Shuttle Endeavour!”
I’m astonished that only 7 bolts hold the shuttle to its shuttler! And I am SO glad that you all were able to go to see Endeavor today! That is so exciting.
That’s just one of the facts I retained from working at NASA 15 years ago!
Cool! But isn’t the “only 7 bolts” a bit unsafe?
Erik, I am sure it’s all nice and secure. At least I hope so! I don’t want Endeavour slipping off into the Pacific.
Endeavour actually did a “fly by” yesterday of the Capitol here in Austin (TX). People were really excited. Perhaps NASA should have done more stuff like that in the past and there would still be a shuttle program here in the U.S. Anyway, it was awesome. Go Endeavour!
Well, there was that whole teacher in space thing.
How cool! And I can’t believe only 7 bolts hold the orbiter to the airline! How is that even possible?! 🙂
Amazing. I guess it’s easier to break away with fewer bolts. They must be made from kryptonite lol.
Or something. I’m trying to figure out how they are going to remove Endeavour from the plane, since there is normally a special facility that hoists the Shuttle up so the plan can slip out underneath.
My husband got to go inside and look out the hatch. He said the struts say,” Attach Shuttle here, black side down.” NASA has a sense of humor.
I’m sure that today was an amazing day. How exciting:) I’m glad there were plenty of others who got to celebrate the homecoming:)
It was so much fun Friday to watch people all over Southern California stream out of office buildings and schools and visit local landmarks in hopes of catching a glimpse. Thanks for stopping by!
Lucky number, seven. Thanks for the great pics!