Kennedy Space Center workers are racing to prepare a 90,000 square foot building for the arrival of space shuttle Atlantis, which will be rolled into its new home at the KSC Visitor Complex on Friday.
"You'll never be able to see another orbiter at this display configuration anywhere," said project director Tim Macy. "I think its gonna blow a lot of people away."
Once Atlantis is moved into its cavernous new home, large jacks will be used to lift the orbiter 36 feet off the ground and tilt it at a 43 degree angle. The spacecraft's cargo bay doors will be open, so visitors looking down from a balcony will see Atlantis as it appeared while working in space.
After Atlantis is lifted into position, the rear wall of the building will be sealed shut.
"It's not a garage. Once it gets in, nobody's backing it out and taking it to an asteroid like Bruce Willis did," said Macy, referring to the 1998 movie "Armageddon".
Atlantis will roll out of the Vehicle Assembly Building around 7 a.m. Friday to begin its 11 mile journey across KSC property. Along the way it will make several stops so the orbiter can be viewed by NASA employees and members of the public who bought tickets for the event.
To buy tickets, visit the KSC website.