After flying all the way around the world and setting two distance records, the flight from Salina, Kan., to Chantilly Va., to deliver the Virgin Atlantic Global Flyer for display in an aerospace museum must have seemed anti-climactic for millionaire pilot adventurer Steve Fossett.
Fossett delivered the carbon fiber aircraft designed by Burt Rutan to the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven Udvar-Hazy Center May 23. Fossett set several records in the aircraft starting in 2005 with an around the world flight staying aloft for 67 hours and 1 minute. This was followed by a flight from Kennedy Space Center in Florida to Bournemouth, England, to set a nonstop non-refueled distance record, followed by a closed course distance record of a round trip from Salina, Kan.
Fossett donated the aircraft to the museum. The Global Flyer airframe will be placed on permanent display, hanging from the ceiling at the Steven Udvar-Hazy Center at Dulles International Airport. The turbofan engine will be displayed at floor level.