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Cockpit of Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) 905 by National Geographic

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About This Gigapan

Taken by
National Geographic National Geographic
Explore score
1.06 Gigapixels
Date added
Sep 10, 2012
Date taken
Sep 06, 2012
astrophotography, photojournalism

The cockpit of Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) 905 hasn't been updated since it was built in 1970. There are no computer screens and no joystick controls. Both the pilot and co-pilot do have their own ashtrays, harkening back to the days when smoking would be common while flying a jumbo-jet. The additional weight and drag of the passenger orbiter dramatically limits the range of this aircraft because it can't carry as much fuel and is forced to fly below 15,000 feet. Without the orbiter, the 747 can travel over five times further between stops but is forced to carry pig-iron in its cargo hold to balance out the center of gravity.

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