From the Collection: Space Shuttle Tire
The collection on our floor can be a bit overwhelming and visitors can miss some really interesting items. “From the Collection” highlights some of the smaller items easily missed. This edition of “From the Collection” features our Space Shuttle Tire.
On April 8th 2002, STS-110 lifted off into space to deliver parts of the International Space Station. 11 days later (April 19th) the shuttle lowered its landing gear and gently came to a halt on Runway 33 at Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
A year ago, NASA started off the Artifact Loan Opportunities Program by offering the main landing gear tires from space shuttles. The Museum requested a tire from STS-110 because local astronaut Ellen Ochoa (not so local now because she works in Texas, but she considers La Mesa her hometown) flew aboard as a Mission Specialist. She was the first Latina in space.
Luckily enough, NASA selected the Museum as a recipient of an Atlantis Shuttle tire and sent one to us earlier this year. This flown-in-space object is now on display (along with our other flown-in-space items) in our Space Flight gallery and will be highlighted during our Space Day celebration.