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Weather pushes space shuttle Endeavour's L.A. arrival to Friday

September 17, 2012 |  4:40 pm

PHOTOS: Space shuttle EndeavourSpace shuttle Endeavour will arrive in Los Angeles a day later than originally intended after the threat of thunderstorms again delayed the start of the retired orbiter's cross-country trip from Florida.

The shuttle is now expected to reach Los Angeles International Airport on Friday, NASA announced.

Endeavour was supposed to leave NASA's Kennedy Space Center for Houston early Monday, the first leg of its days-long trek across the southern United States that includes 1,500-foot flyovers of several NASA facilities.

 PHOTOS: Space shuttle Endeavour

But on Sunday, NASA officials said the flight would be delayed a day because of storms between Florida and Houston. Midday Monday, NASA announced the departure had again been pushed back, to dawn Wednesday.

The status of the low-level flyovers of NASA facilities between Florida and California were not immediately known Monday. NASA spokesman Michael Curie said earlier that some of the route could be in jeopardy because of the weather delays.

NASA officials said plans to fly the shuttle over California and Los Angeles landmarks remain intact.

PHOTOS: Endeavour’s final flight

"The weather, as we have said from the beginning, determines the flight path and really the success of the flyovers," Curie said. "Once we get to Houston, the weather forecast for the rest of the week is great.... It's just a matter of getting out of Florida."

A modified 747 aircraft will carry Endeavour to Los Angeles International Airport, where it will be housed until its move to its permanent home at the California Science Center. The shuttle's two-day trek through the city's streets is expected to begin Oct. 12.

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— Kate Mather

Photo: The space shuttle Endeavour sits atop a Boeing 747 on the apron at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral. Credit: Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times

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