US & Canada

Space Shuttle Enterprise in New York fly-by

Space shuttle enterprise flies over New York City 27 April 2012
Image caption Enterprise was previously housed in a Smithsonian museum in Washington DC

The space shuttle Enterprise has had a piggyback ride on a 747 during a flyover of the Statue of Liberty and other New York landmarks.

Enterprise is on its way to its new home at the Intrepid Sea Air and Space Museum, which is on an aircraft carrier docked in New York City's Hudson River.

The prototype shuttle was used only for atmospheric test flights.

Nasa's most used shuttle, Discovery, flew over Washington DC this month on the way to its new museum home.

Enterprise's final flight from just outside the US capital was scheduled earlier in the week but was delayed for weather concerns.

Trekkies' campaign

The 747 carrying the shuttle will land at New York's John F Kennedy airport. In the coming weeks, Enterprise will be put on a barge and floated along the city's waterways to the Intrepid museum.

The museum is located aboard the decommissioned USS Intrepid aircraft carrier. Three aircraft have been moved to another museum in order to make room for the Enterprise.

Built in 1976, the Enterprise was originally to be named the Constitution, but a write-in campaign by fans of the television series Star Trek persuaded officials to rename it.

Discovery's dramatic flyover of Washington drew large crowds. It became the first of the retired shuttle fleet to enter a branch of the National Air and Space Museum, located at Dulles International Airport in Virginia.

Additional shuttle moves are planned. Later in 2012, Endeavour will move from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida to the California Science Center in Los Angeles, while Atlantis will be moved permanently into Nasa's Kennedy Center visitor complex.

Two of Nasa's shuttles, Challenger and Columbia, were destroyed in accidents.

The shuttle programme ended in July 2011. The final mission of Atlantis capped off 30 years of shuttle flight.

For the near future, US astronauts will rely on Russian space flights for trips to the International Space Station.

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