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NASA’s Boeing 747 Telescope Is Flying To Hamburg

NASA’s 747SP, the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, abbreviated SOFIA, has crossed the Atlantic on her way to Lufthansa Technik in Hamburg. The one-of-a-kind aircraft will be touching down shortly after 19:00 local time this evening to undergo a C-check with the German maintenance specialist.

On her way for a C-check

The modified jetliner, which carries a 106-inch diameter telescope, is currently on her way from California, USA, to Hamburg, Germany. A spokesperson for Lufthansa Technik told Simple Flying that the aircraft is to run through a C-check with the maintenance provider. In addition, some of the scientific equipment is to undergo technical servicing. A C-check usually takes an aircraft out of use for one to two weeks.

This is not the first time SOFIA has made a call at Lufthansa Technik’s headquarters. SOFIA made the journey to the hangars in Hamburg for a complete overhaul in 2014. She then came back in 2017 for a scheduled heavy maintenance check.