Feeds

Endeavour: donuts and a Toyota ease shuttle's drive through L.A.

Trundling to its final resting place at two miles per hour

Build a business case: developing custom apps

If you're reading this right after we clicked The Reg's Publish button at 2:13pm Pacific Time on Friday, know that the Space Shuttle Endeavour is leaving its parking place near the corner of La Tijera Avenue and Sepulveda Eastway in Los Angeles, and continuing its journey to the California Science Center in that city's downtown Exposition Park.

In orbit, Endeavour traveled at around 17,500 mph (28,000 kph). It's now traversing the streets of L.A. significantly more slowly: two miles per hour (3.2 kph). When it, its 835,958-gallon (3,164,445 liters) fuel tank, and dual booster rockets lifted it off from Florida's space port on its 25 trips, it weighed 1,607,185 pounds (729,000kg). As it rolls through LA, it has trimmed down to 151,205 pounds (68,585kg), sans tank and boosters.

Endeavor left its United Airlines temporary-storage hanger on Thursday night at 11:25pm, and exited the Los Angeles International (LAX) airport at 2am local time. It arrived at its La Tijera and Sepulveda rest stop around 4am on the first leg of its 12-mile journey to its final resting place at the science museum – which has helpfully published a schedule and the route of the two-day trip. Endeavour is scheduled to arrive at its new home sometime between 6:30 and 8:30pm on Saturday.

Needless to say, moving a 122-foot long, 78-foot wide shuttle with a five-story tail through city streets required some preparation. Power and telephone lines were lifted, 2,180 steel plates were installed in the route to support the shuttle and its transporter, and 400 trees needed to be cut down – although the science center promises to plant a thousand new trees in their stead.

At around 4:15pm on Friday, Endeavour will park near the venerable Randy's Donuts at the corner of West Manchester and La Cienega, whose landmark giant-donut rooftop ornament is familiar to anyone who has travelled through LAX.

The Space Shuttle Endeavour being trucked through the streets of Los Angeles

Endeavour wends its way through the streets of L.A. (source: Irfan Khan/The Los Angeles Times; click to enlarge)

In honor of the occasion, Randy's is featuring a celebratory iced shuttle donut. "Given how hard it might be to see the space shuttle Endeavour moving through our streets Friday and Saturday," Randy's writes on their blog, "why not skip the headaches and eat the shuttle instead?"

In another commercial tie-in, Endeavour will be towed for the last quarter mile (375 meters) by a 2012 Toyota Tundra CrewMax half-ton pickup truck. "The entire journey is something the world will be watching," said Toyota marketeer Ed Laukes, "and gives us a chance to prove that the 'overbuilt' Tundra is built to do any job – even tow the space shuttle."

You gotta love American ingenuity and salesmanship. Or not. ®

Bootnote

To provide shuttle fans – and who isn't? – a last look inside Endeavour, National Geographic stitched together 600 individual photographs to create a panable, zoomable 3.65-gigapixel image of its flight deck "powered-up exactly as it would be in space." It's definitely worth a few minutes of your panning, zooming attention.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Boffins attempt to prove the UNIVERSE IS JUST A HOLOGRAM
Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
China building SUPERSONIC SUBMARINE that travels in a BUBBLE
Shanghai to San Fran in two hours would be a trick, though
LOHAN tunes into ultra long range radio
And verily, Vultures shall speak status unto distant receivers
SpaceX prototype rocket EXPLODES over Texas. 'Tricky' biz, says Elon Musk
No injuries or near injuries. Flight stayed in designated area
Galileo, Galileo! Galileo, Galileo! Galileo fit to go. Magnifico
I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me. But at least I can find my way with ESA GPS by 2017
EOS, Lockheed to track space junk from Oz
WA facility gets laser-eyes out of the fog
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.