NASA's DC-8 airborne science laboratory returned to NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center recently after an absence of more than two years. The venerable flying science lab's missions had been managed by the University of North Dakota since late 2005, although Dryden flight crews continued to operate the aircraft on worldwide data gathering missions. The converted jetliner is the first science aircraft to be based at Dryden's new Aircraft Operations Facility adjacent to Air Force Plant 42 in nearby Palmdale. Four other NASA science aircraft are due to be based there in coming months.
Pilot-in-command for the DC-8's return to Dryden Nov. 8 was veteran NASA research pilot Edwin Lewis, who died in an unrelated plane crash that evening near Las Vegas, Nev.
PHOTO EDITORS: A publication-quality photo to support this release is available for downloading off the Dryden on-line photo gallery at:
TELEVISION EDITORS: Video footage of the DC-8 flying laboratory's arrival at NASA Dryden's Aircraft Operations Facility at Palmdale, Calif., is available by calling NASA Dryden public affairs, 661-276-3449.
For more information about NASA Dryden Flight Research Center and its research projects, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/centers/dryden
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