"Houston We Have Lift Off"
NASA's iconic Boeing 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) has embarked on over 800 flights for the space program since the mid-1970s. The jumbo jet was originally manufactured for American Airlines, and was purchased by NASA in 1974 for $15.6 million. Interestingly, the aircraft made its television debut in 1974, appearing in the background of an episode of the popular TV show, The Six Million Dollar Man.
This historic jet, which is known by its tail number "N905NA" or NASA 905 for short, was retired after its final transport mission in 2012. The last ferry flight with space shuttle Endeavour started on September 19, 2012 from Kennedy Space Center to Ellington Field. The shuttle was then transported from Ellington Field to Edwards Air Force Base the next day, and departed Edwards Air Force Base and flew along the California central valley, where it conducted a circuit over Sacramento on route to the San Francisco Bay Area.