After 306 days, 14 hours, 12 minutes and 43 seconds of flight, over the span of 33 missions, Space Shuttle Orbiter Atlantis, OV-104, on display at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Titusville, Florida, is now the centerpiece of the most breathtaking aerospace museum presentation I’ve ever visited.
This orbiter flew many relatively important missions, including the final Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission in 2009. STS-125 performed five EVAs during the mission, and restored the important telescope, extending its life well beyond original design spec.
It’s truly surreal to walk up right beside this enormous rocket plane. I found it difficult to take the whole thing in at once. It’s overwhelming in a really good way. I wrote more about the experience, and shared several more photos in a previous post (click here to view).