On this day: September 26

Published On: Sep 25 2012 11:33:14 PM CDT   Updated On: Sep 26 2016 01:00:00 AM CDT

Sir Francis Drake completes his trip around the world, Nixon and Kennedy square off on TV, the Beatles release "Abbey Road," and an acting legend passes away, all on this day.

OTD September 26 - space shuttle Enterprise
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NASA/Dryden Flight Research Center

1977: The experimental space shuttle Enterprise flies on its own for the first time. The prototype was attached to a Boeing 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft and carried to a launch height, before being jettisoned by the use of explosive bolts to glide to a landing on the runways at Edwards Air Force Base. The intention of these flights was to test the flight characteristics of the orbiter itself, on a typical approach and landing profile from orbit.

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