Aviation News


Space Shuttle Full Fuselage Trainer Opens To The Public In Seattle

Seattle’s Museum of Flight welcomed the newest addition to its collection on Saturday November 10th: NASA’s Full Fuselage Space Shuttle Trainer.

Photos: Inside the Space Shuttle Full Fuselage Trainer

Dignitaries including Washington Governor Christine Gregoire and former NASA shuttle astronauts Nick Patrick and Wendy Lawrence mixed with a crowd of hundreds in the Boeing Field-based facility’s new Charles Simonyi Space Gallery to officially open the trainer to the public. Those in attendance were among the first to tour the exhibit, known as the FFT for short.

Unlike the four real shuttles, whose interiors are not open to the public, visitors to the museum are able to climb aboard and share the same space that every NASA shuttle astronaut to ever go into space has trained in. The full scale  mockup allows for an up close and personal experience with each of the three main components: the flight deck, the mid deck and the payload bay.

The payload bay is easily the most accessible. At sixty-one feet long and nineteen feet wide it is the most spacious feature by far. In order to increase accessibility an ADA accessible guide path was installed in the center of the bay extending from a foyer at the aft end to the fully configured airlock at the forward end. Informational panels line the walls and replicas of satellites that would’ve at one point graced the bay hang in suspension above.

While hundreds took the opportunity to tour the payload bay on opening day, only a lucky handful were able to tour the crew compartment. The cramped, roughly 160-sq ft space is available by guided tour only and limited to small group of three or four at a time. Each tour lasts roughly 20 minutes and, unfortunately, will cost a little extra for the privilege on top of admission. Our vote? Worth it.

Photos: Space Shuttle Full Fuselage Trainer Opening Day

About the Author

Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren



PHOTOS: The Three Remaining WB-57Fs Take Flight Over Houston

Residents of Houston Texas were given a rare treat last Thursday: A formation flight by the only three remaining airworthy B-57s, NASA's WB-57Fs.
by Nathan Moeller


Space Travel’s Biggest Benefit – World Peace? Why We Must Venture Further

Why do we travel to space? What if there was a reason greater than technological advancements and finding a home on other planets? Dare we say...
by Phil Derner Jr.


President Richard M. Nixon and Dr. James C. Fletcher, NASA Administrator, discuss the proposed Space Shuttle vehicle in San Clemente, California, on January 5, 1972. (Photo by NASA)

Today in Aviation History: January 5th

The Space Shuttle program is launched, Amelia Earhart is declared legally dead, Independence Air ceases operations, and more...
by NYCAviation Staff


WATCH LIVE: Orion EFT-1 Launch Will Test Human Flight Into Deep Space

Orion, NASA’s newest spacecraft, is set to launch atop a Delta IV Heavy rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 7:05 a.m. Watch it live!
by Sarina Houston


Cool NASA Animation Beautifully Details Every Step of Orion’s First Launch!

A cool animation details NASA’s Orion Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1) mission, which will go farther than any human spacecraft has in the past 40 years.
by Ken Kremer, UniverseToday.com