Smithsonian welcomes Discovery to space collection
CHANTILLY, Va. (AP) — Space shuttle Discovery is preparing to move into its new home at the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum annex in northern Virginia.
Thursday morning, the world's most traveled spaceship will be lifted off its Boeing 747 carrier and towed to the museum near Dulles International Airport. Astronauts including former Sen. John Glenn will help deliver Discovery to its retirement as an artifact representing the 30-year shuttle program.
A welcome ceremony is expected to draw thousands of visitors who want an up-close look at the shuttle after it flew over the Washington area Tuesday. The museum is hosting a four-day festival to showcase Discovery.
Curator Valerie Neal says Discovery will be displayed as if it just landed. There will be an interactive display giving visitors a look inside the shuttle.