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This telescope is designed for infrared astronomy observations in the stratosphere at altitudes of about 41,000 feet
Altitude 41,000 feet (planned: 41,000 feet)
The SOFIA Observatory is based at NASA's Neil A. Armstrong Flight Research Center at LA/Palmdale Regional Airport,
originally posted by: Shadowhawk
It was indeed the SOFIA 747SP (registration N747NA). It flies right over my house on the way out (just as a B-2 did a few minutes ago). The remaining 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (N911NA) is grounded at Palmdale to provide spare parts for the SOFIA aircraft.