Please Log In

05/15/11 - I visit the Kennedy Space Center the day before Endeavour's final flight

Previous BatchNext Batch
id: 33210
James is excited to drive out to KSC
id: 33211
Some "real Florida" outside of touristy Orlando
id: 33212
Kenney Space Center! Let's go!
id: 33213
Cool sign
id: 33214
id: 33215
It's actually just a big model of a shuttle, but it's still cool!
id: 33216
Just six more miles!
id: 33217
Ahh! It's the Vehicle Assembly Building! That's where they put the rockets together!
id: 33218
We're here! The Kennedy Space Center!
id: 33219
The Rocket Garden! Unfortunately, I never got a chance to go look again, so this is the only picture I have!
id: 33220
We immediately jumped on the bus tour
id: 33221
id: 33222
Oh man, only one day left!
id: 33223
As we pulled around the corner and I saw the VAB down the road, a chill went down my spine
id: 33224
It's the VAB!! The American flag is 22 stories tall!
id: 33225
I believe this is the equipment they use to move the external tank around
id: 33226
The Saturn Causeway! This is the road the Saturn V and Space Shuttle travel down to the launch pad!
id: 33227
It's the space shuttle!! Endeavour! An actual shuttle on the pad!
id: 33228
The crawler! They've been using this platform since the 60s!
id: 33229
Each tread link weighs a couple thousand pounds!
id: 33230
id: 33231
SPACE dots??
id: 33232
Boeing's Delta launch pad
id: 33233
SpaceX's launch pad. The Falcon 9 launches from here!
id: 33234
An Air Force launch facility
id: 33235
I believe this is the Lockheed launch pad
id: 33236
And of course, the big one, Launch Complex 39-A with Space Shuttle Endeavour primed for her final voyage
id: 33237
It was surreal to finally see it
id: 33238
Space Shuttle Endeavour, mostly concealed by the rotating service structure (RSS)
id: 33239
Launch complex 39-B, the alternate shuttle launch site, now being reworked for a new generation of launch vehicles
id: 33240
A wider shot of 39-A
id: 33241
Wider still
id: 33242
There was some serious photographic hardware at the viewing platform
id: 33243
The shuttle and me! I'm finally here!
id: 33244
The crawler with the VAB and some unidentified vertical structure
id: 33245
Those doors are tall enough to allow a Saturn V to pass under. Over 300 feet tall!
id: 33246
Giant crawler treads
id: 33247
This guy had a ridiculously huge lens
id: 33248
Looking down at a space shuttle main engine they had on display
id: 33249
James checks his phone with Endeavour in the background
id: 33250
The guts of the space shuttle main engine. It's incredible that something complex can work so reliably
id: 33251
The SSME in all its glory
id: 33252
This is about the closest I will ever get to the space shuttle (before they're in museums)
id: 33253
Pegasus, the barge they use to deliver the space shuttle external tanks
id: 33254
The countdown clock! This was the best angle I could get from the bus though
id: 33255
I like the artwork on the water tower!
id: 33256
The Orbiter Processing Facility! This is really the closest I'll get to a shuttle, but it's inside so it doesn't count!
id: 33257
Next up, the Saturn V center!
id: 33258
Hell yeah, we do!
id: 33259
I was told that these were the actual consoles mission control used during the Apollo era but I don't believe them since they've all been modified
id: 33260
They reenacted the Apollo 11 landing
id: 33261
The status board!
id: 33262
I'm not sure why they felt the need to add all these fake video screens..
id: 33263
The business end of a Saturn V. The most powerful rocket ever built
id: 33264
Looking down the immense Saturn V rocket
id: 33265
Five F-1 engines. Unimaginable power
id: 33266
Me standing under the end of the Saturn V rocket
id: 33267
Each F-1 engine bell is larger than an entire Mercury capsule
id: 33268
James contemplates large rockets
id: 33269
You can see the cooling rings wrapped around the exterior
id: 33270
So many little pieces
id: 33271
J-2 engines! The power behind the Saturn V's second stage
id: 33272
The back of the second stage of the Saturn V
id: 33273
The rocket is still ridiculously huge even if you don't count the first stage
id: 33274
The actual command module from Apollo 14
id: 33275
I believe this flight plan is from Apollo 17
id: 33276
Apollo flight plans
id: 33277
Actual flight plans from Apollo
id: 33278
The door to Kittyhawk, the Apollo 14 command module
id: 33279
Last time I was here I managed to touch the heat shield on this vehicle by jamming my fingers through the plastic shielding.. not this tmie
id: 33280
A moon rock!
id: 33281
Various Apollo hardware
id: 33282
Alan Shepard's actual lunar EVA suit
id: 33283
The third stage of the Saturn V, using a single J-2 engine
id: 33284
Gene Cernan's lunar EVA suit
id: 33285
The suit of the last man to walk on the moon
id: 33286
The last boots to walk on the moon.. for now
id: 33287
This is an actual Lunar Module, LM-9. It was never flown since it was replaced by the more robust modules for the J missions
id: 33288
Inside a lunar module
id: 33289
James near the front of the Saturn V
id: 33290
The command module of the Saturn V
id: 33291
Looking down from the front of the Saturn V
id: 33292
Outside the Saturn V center, we could see the shuttle launch pad. You can't really see it here due to all the launchpad structure in the way, but look carefully and you can see the orange external tank through the launchpad
id: 33293
The VAB from another angle
id: 33294
A bald eagle nest! It's been there for almost 40 years, weighs 700 pounds, and is big enough to lie down on!
id: 33295
Palm trees!
id: 33296
Recreating a shot I took seven years ago
id: 33297
James kept taking pictures as I walked back to reclaim my camera
id: 33298
Me in front of Explorer! A one to one scale model of the space shuttle orbiter
id: 33299
The external tank and solid rocket boosters are simply massive
id: 33300
The rear of Exporer
id: 33301
Explorer! Not really a shuttle, but it's still amazing to walk around
id: 33302
The shuttle launch facility was amazing! I liked it even more than Mission: SPACE!
id: 33303
The underbelly of Explorer, with a replica of the thermal protection system
id: 33304
Inside a weird little "current mission" building
id: 33305
Details on the upcoming mission!
id: 33306
A plaque at the Space Mirror
id: 33307
A sobering reminder of the cost of human spacefilght
id: 33308
The T-38, a jet astronauts use to practice shuttle landings
id: 33309
Me with a few of my fake astronaut buddies
id: 33310
James poses with his hand and.. NASA itself..
id: 33311
A mockup of the Orion capsule
id: 33312
Ten bucks says Orion never flies
id: 33313
A space tree! The seed that this tree came from was flown to the moon and back on Apollo 14!
Previous BatchNext BatchReturn to Pics Main

Copyright 2003-2019 :: This page was generated in 0.021 seconds