Space shuttle Discovery, mounted atop a NASA 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, is seen as it flies near the U.S. Capitol, Tuesday, April 17, 2012, in Washington. Discovery, the first orbiter retired from NASA’s shuttle fleet, completed 39 missions, spent 365 days in space, orbited the Earth 5,830 times, and traveled 148,221,675 miles. NASA will transfer Discovery to the National Air and Space Museum to begin its new mission to commemorate past achievements in space and to educate and inspire future generations of explorers.
Image Credit: NASA/Smithsonian Institution/Harold Dorwin
What's up with the little escort the shuttle has? Were they making sure no other flights happened at the same time? I guess if I were transporting a space shuttle I'd want security to be tight, too.
http://www.aviationbanter.com/archive/i ... -6729.html wrote:
On Mon, 20 Oct 2003 11:12:06 -0700, Hobo > wrote:
> What is the purpose of "chase planes" that are always involved
> with the testing of every new aircraft design?Mary Shafer wrote:
There are two kinds of chase planes: safety and photo.
Safety chase is there for safety of flight--the chase pilot takes the
radio calls, watches for traffic, makes sure they stay inside the
restricted area, keeps an eye out for fluids leaks or parts falling
off, acts as a pacer aircraft to be sure the CADS is working about
right, looks for anomalies like flutter or buffet, and, if required,
acts as RESCAP.
Photo chase carries the photographer or videographer, obviously. The
photo chase pilot will also be a safety chase.
At Dryden, research aircraft have to have a safety chase at all times,
except in the landing pattern. On long flights, we could use the EDW
tanker crew as an interim safety chase while we swapped safety chases,
ensuring that the research vehicle was never flying all by itself, out
of everyone's view.Dan Ford wrote:
They do useful things like confirming that the test aircraft's wheels
are down (or up, as the case may be).
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