The Shuttle Orbiter is mounted on top of a Boeing 747 carrier aircraft. The Shuttle Orbiter is often transported in this way from landing site to launch site. Here it is being flown prior to early landing tests of the Orbiter, during which it was released from the 747 aircraft and glided in to land as it would on return from space. The first landing test took place on 12th August 1977.
© National Aeronautics & Space Administration / Science & Society