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Behind the scenes at Endeavour's final landing (photos)

CNET looks at the "baby" Space Shuttle's arrival in Los Angeles after a trip over many of the country's landmarks -- not to mention 25 trips into space.

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Daniel Terdiman
Daniel Terdiman is a senior writer at CNET News covering Twitter, Net culture, and everything in between.
Daniel Terdiman
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Underbelly

On September 21, the Space Shuttle Endeavour made its final journey, flying atop a specially outfitted Boeing 747 on a round-trip of California, buzzing many of its most famous landmarks -- including the Golden Gate Bridge -- before landing in Los Angeles. There, it will live permanently at the California Science Center.

Upon its arrival in Los Angeles, the Shuttle was met by an enthusiastic crowd of hundreds, eager to see the famed spaceship complete its long journey. Among those on hand to witness the event were photographers from 3ality Technica and the Society of Camera Operators, as well as David Knight, Ted Kenney, and Haley Jackson, the creative team behind a forthcoming film, "Endeavour Comes Home," there to help document the event.

Here, we see Endeavour's battered and beaten underside.

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Coming in for landing

The Space Shuttle Endeavour, mounted atop a specially-outfitted Boeing 747, does an initial pass over LAX, minutes before touching down at the airport for the final landing in its 20-year career. Endeavour flew its first flight in 1992 as the replacement for Challenger, which was destroyed in flight in 1986.
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Filming approach

A cameraman films Endeavour as the Shuttle -- and the 747 carrying it -- does an initial pass over LAX, minutes before touching down at the airport for the final landing in its 20-year career.
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Landed

The Space Shuttle Endeavour has landed and is beginning to taxi in to a hangar where hundreds of well-wishers are waiting.
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Filming arrival

A camera crew films Endeavour as it is taxied toward the hangar where hundreds of people awaited its arrival.
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Approaching with police escort

A police car escorts Endeavour and the Boeing 747 carrying it.
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Approaching

A look at Endeavour and the Boeing 747 carrying it as the two aircraft taxi in at LAX on September 21.
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With flag

The Boeing 747 ferrying Endeavour sports an American flag as the Space Shuttle completes its final flight.
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Endeavour and 747

A look at Endeavour and its ride.
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Ferry flights

The icons on the side of the 747 indicate the many ferry flights the airplane took over the years.
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Gathered to see

A crowd of several hundred people was on hand to welcome Endeavour to Los Angeles.
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All aboard

Space Shuttle fans climb aboard the specially-outfitted 747 that ferried Endeavour around the country.
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Crane

This crane is used to lift Endeavour off the 747 and on to a special truck.
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Truck

After its final flight, Endeavour was to be lifted off the 747 and on to this special truck for its slow ride across Los Angeles.

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