GlobalFlyer Leaves Salina For Last Time

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May 25, 2003
Salina KS
I heard part of the radio traffic as the plane left Salina. Did anyone in Salina here this traffic and did you record it?

The Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer said goodbye to Salina for the final time Tuesday morning. At 8:00 a.m the GlobalFlyer, with pilot Steve Fossett at the controls, departed from the Salina Municipal Airport. He was headed to Washington Dulles International Airport, a flight Fossett expected to take about four and a half hours.
The final destination for the aircraft will be the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum. Fossett says the Smithsonian has been interested in the GlobalFlyer for quite a long time. Fossett says the Smithsonian Director actually requested the plane before it was even built.
In the past year and a half the GlobalFlyer has broken three flight records, two taking off and landing in Salina. In March 2005, Fossett became the first person to fly an airplane nonstop, solo, around the world without refueling. He also set an absolute around-the-world speed record. This February Fossett piloted the airplane to a nonstop, non-refueled distance record. In March he was back in Salina from where he set a closed-course distance record.
The aircraft eventually will hang amid the general aviation collection in the Udvar-Hazy Center's Boeing Aviation Hangar. The engine will be displayed at floor level. The aircraft and the engine will be formally accessioned into the national collection in June. The Udvar-Hazy Center currently is home to 126 aircraft and 142 large space artifacts.


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