X-Press Staff

Jay Levine
X-Press Editor
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Steve Lighthill
Managing Editor
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(661) 276-3940

Kevin Rohrer
Chief, Strategic Communications
P O Box 273
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Edwards, CA 93523
(661) 276-3595

Contributing Writers

Alan Brown
Dryden Public Affairs
P O Box 273
MS 4838
Edwards, CA 93523
(661) 276-2662

Peter Merlin
Dryden History Office
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MS 4809
Edwards, CA 93523
(661) 276-2679

Dryden X-Press

Cover Story

NASA 747 SCA Delivers History

Shuttle Discovery flying by Washington Monument and the Capital Building in Washington D. C.

As the awe-inspiring 30-year Space Shuttle Program comes to a close, a set of flights added to its spectacular history.

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  • NASA's specially modified 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, or SCA, is positioned under Discovery to be attached for a ferry flight to the Kennedy Space Center.

    Work Horse Discovery Retired

    Discovery, the first shuttle to be retired, flew more missions than any of the other shuttles - 39 in all. Its first mission was STS-41D in August - September 1984 and concluded with STS-133 in February - March 2011.

  • The first of Enterprise's five free flights from the NASA 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft at Dryden in 1977.

    Enterprise Proved Concepts

    The space shuttle orbiter was the first spacecraft designed with the aerodynamic characteristics and in-atmosphere handling qualities of a conventional airplane. To evaluate the orbiter's aerodynamic flight control systems and subsonic handling characteristics, Dryden undertook a series of flight tests, known as the Approach and Landing Test, or ALT, program, at Edwards Air Force Base in 1977.

  • Eight of the nine pilots and flight engineers who have flown NASA's Shuttle Carrier Aircraft in recent years.

    Coast-to-Coast: Orbiters Traveled in Style on Top of the NASA 747 SCAs

    Two NASA 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft have ferried the space shuttle fleet from coast to coast for more than three decades.