Endeavour Mission 26: ET Comes Home!

Endeavour did not merely move in a straight line down streets. The orbiter had to zig and zag to avoid poles and trees.
Endeavour did not merely move in a straight line down streets. The orbiter had to zig and zag to avoid poles and trees.

PRESS RELEASE:

California Science Center Foundation Announces
Route for External Tank’s Journey 

Los Angeles – Today the California Science Center Foundation announced the route for “Mission 26: ET Comes Home,” the journey of the external tank (ET-94). It will travel from the Michoud Assembly Facility through the Panama Canal by barge to Los Angeles, then on through city streets, pulled by a truck on dollies, to its final destination near the California Science Center’s Samuel Oschin Pavilion. The entire journey will take six to eight weeks. ET-94 is expected to arrive around May 21, 2016.

Larger and longer than Endeavour, the ET was the Orbiter’s massive “gas tank” and contained the propellants used by the Space Shuttle Main Engines (though ET-94 is empty). The tank, the only major, non-reusable part of the space shuttle, is neither as wide as Endeavour (32 feet versus 78 feet) nor as high (35 feet versus 56 feet). Because of this, fewer utilities will be impacted and no trees will be removed along ET’s route from the coast to Exposition Park, though some light trimming may be necessary. The path it will take through the streets was planned with input from city officials, utilities and community groups.

The route is as follows –
Marina Del Rey parking lot to Fiji Way
Fiji Way to Lincoln (PCH)
Lincoln to Mindanao Way
Mindanao Way to CA-90
CA-90 to Culver Blvd
Culver Blvd. to Lincoln via transition ramp
Lincoln to Loyola Blvd
?Loyola Blvd. to Westchester Pkwy
Westchester Parkway turns into Arbor Vitae St. at Airport Blvd; Arbor Vitae St. to La Brea Ave
La Brea Ave. to Manchester Blvd
Manchester Blvd. to Vermont Ave
Vermont Ave. to Martin Luther King Blvd.?
Martin Luther King Blvd. to Exposition Park.

The journey through the streets to the Science Center is expected to take 13-18 hours.

“With the transfer of ET-94 from NASA, we will have the ability to preserve and display an entire stack of flight hardware, making the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center an even more compelling educational experience. With the same outpouring of community support we saw with the arrival of Endeavour, we look forward to celebrating this gift from NASA as it journeys from the coast through city streets to the California Science Center,” notes California Science Center President Jeffrey N. Rudolph.

“We are honored that NASA has entrusted the California Science Center and the City of Los Angeles with this incredible piece of history,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti. “As the world’s last surviving flight-qualified space shuttle external tank journeys from the coast to its final home, it will inspire a new generation of Angelenos — who can dream the kind of dreams that make it possible for us to continue leading the world in innovation.”

Inglewood Mayor James T. Butts notes that “Inglewood is pleased to share another historic moment with the California Science Center in the transport of ET-94.  Nearly 1.5 million people came out to cheer Endeavour years ago bringing joy to everyone, young and old.  The event celebrated our sense of wonderment and community pride. Inglewood once again welcomes the ET to its home at the Science Center”

Mrs. Lynda Oschin, Chairperson and Secretary of the Mr. and Mrs. Oschin Family Foundation, adds “I’m so excited about this new addition to the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center and look forward to joining the enthusiastic crowds as it makes it’s way to the California Science Center.”

The donation of this never-used artifact from NASA is significant, and allows the Science Center to fulfill its vision of building a full stack for Space Shuttle Endeavour’s final display in the launch position in the future Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center. This will mark the only time an ET has traveled through urban streets and will evoke memories of when Endeavour traveled 12-miles from the Los Angeles International Airport to the Science Center and was cheered on by a crowd of 1.5 million in 2012.

Ways the Public Can Support Mission 26: ET Comes Home
To follow ET-94’s journey from the Michoud Assembly Facility to the California Science Center, use the hashtag #ETComesHome.
Volunteer opportunities to help move ET-94 to the California Science Center will be available. Contact the California Science Center volunteer office at (213) 744-2124 or at VolunteerDept@cscmail.org for more information.

The California Science Center Foundation welcomes the public’s support of the EndeavourLA Campaign to create the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center. Opportunities include sponsoring one of Endeavour’s thermal tiles with a gift of $1,000 and monthly payment options are available. For more information or to make a donation online, please visit EndeavourLA.org. ET-94 will also be the star attraction at the Science Center’s 18th Annual Discovery Ball on Friday, May 20, 2016 in Marina del Rey. Tables for our first-ever, off-site gala start at $10,000 (Ten people) or $2,500 for a pair of tickets. Contact galainfo@cscmail.org for reservations.

About the California Science Center
California Science Center is located at 700 Exposition Park Drive, Los Angeles.  Open daily from 10am to 5 pm, except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.  Admission to the exhibits is free. Timed tickets are required for the Space Shuttle Endeavour exhibition and may be obtained online for $2. IMAX Theater tickets range from $5.00 to $8.25.  Both the Science Center and IMAX Theater are wheelchair accessible.  Visitors can enter the parking lot at 39th/Exposition Park Drive and Figueroa Street.  Parking is $12/car.  For general information, phone (323) SCIENCE or visitwww.californiasciencecenter.org.

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