Simulation shows Discovery's final flight -- into D.C. (video)

Next week, the Space Shuttle Discovery will take to the air for the last time, aboard NASA's special 747. But why wait to see the combo soar above Washington when you can watch this video?

If you had been hoping to be able to see the Space Shuttle Discovery make its last flight -- albeit on the back of a 747 -- next week but can't be in Washington, D.C., don't worry, we have you covered.

That's because the nice folks over at Technology Integration Services have created a 3D simulation of what the flyover of D.C. and landing at Dulles International will look like.

For those of you who don't know what this is about, NASA said earlier this week that it will be flying the Discovery-747 combo about 1,500 feet over Washington on Tuesday. The special flight will soar over the top of several national monuments, including the National Mall, the National Harbor, and the Smithsonian's Udvar-Hazy Center.

Eventually, the aircraft/spaceship tandem will land at Dulles and then the Shuttle will be transported to the Smithsonian's Air and Space Museum.

But lots of people -- meaning me -- who would love to be there to see the flight for themselves won't be able to. And while NASA will broadcast it on NASA TV, why wait? That's where this video comes in quite handy today.

Of course, there's plenty of real video of the Space Shuttle flying around hitched to the back of NASA's special 747 . (See below.) But this being Discovery's final time in the air, it's still worth a look.

And for those who don't recall Discovery's accomplishments, NASA notes that during its lifetime, it made 39 trips into space, spent one full year there, orbited Earth 5,830 times, and racked up 148.2 million miles. Surely that's good enough for first-class on board that 747, rather than being tied to the roof?

 

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