The Two-Way
1:59 pm
Fri October 12, 2012

Shuttle Endeavour Begins 12-Mile Crawl To New Los Angeles Home

Originally published on Fri October 12, 2012 2:07 pm

The Shuttle Endeavour began an incredible 12-mile journey through the streets of Southern California. The trip ends at its new home at the California Science Center.

Perhaps the AP put it best: In space, the shuttle traveled at a blazing 17,500 mph. But this final victory lap through narrow Los Angeles streets will proceed at 2 mph.

The AP adds:

"Hundreds of spectators, some with pajama-clad children in tow, waited in the predawn darkness. In unison, they held up their cameras and cellphones and gaped as the 170,000-pound Endeavour inched by with its tail towering over streetlights and its wings spanning the roadway.

"It made stop-and-go progress, with some halts to check its balance and to prune trees in its path as it crept past strip malls and storefronts.

"In a massive feat of parallel parking, the shuttle was backed into a shopping center parking lot in the Westchester neighborhood around 5:30 a.m. — later than expected."

The Los Angeles Times reports the two-day journey is a triumph of engineering. The 85-ton shuttle is on a transporter designed by Boeing. It has 80 wheels in 40 pairs that can move in any direction.

The Times produced a must-watch video that shows off all the transporter can do. It's worth a watch.

Endeavour is scheduled to finish its journey tomorrow.

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