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Shuttle-Ferrying Jet Reaches Space Center Houston

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The plane that carried Space Shuttles to their final destinations made its way to its final destination.

    A modified jumbo jet that transported shuttles piggyback to Florida following space flights that landed in California has arrived at its new home after an 8-mile highway trek across Houston that took nearly two days.

    What was known as the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, or SCA, or NASA 905, reached Space Center Houston after a slow-moving trip from Ellington Field.

    Some giant flatbed trailers on Monday began hauling the biggest disassembled pieces of the old 747 jumbo jet that flew shuttles on cross-country trips. The last of the entourage arrived at Space Center Houston early Wednesday.

    The fuselage is 190 feet long, that's the length of two basketball courts.

    Deputies closed roads and power crews cleared lines to make room for the jumbo jet.

    Boeing workers spent nearly 40 days taking apart the 747 and it will take as long to put it back together. The plane was divided into seven parts and weights 318,000 pounds.

    "We're very excited to see this coming to fruition. It's a great display. We've worked with Space Center Houston to help make this happen," said Dr. Ellen Ochoa the director of Johnson Space Center.

    The jet will be put together and topped with a shuttle replica about 60 feet off the ground as a museum piece. The site is expected to open next year just outside NASA's Johnson Space Center.

    "I think it's being put to very good use. I think the exhibit that they're going to have in Space Center Houston is going to be world class," said former NASA pilot Frank Marlow.

    Mission Control in Houston served as the center for the nation's manned space flights.