This question got me thinking, would the Space Shuttle have been able to use its main engines to roll up to speed and take off horizontally like an airplane? (I'm not asking about getting to space, just flying around) What would the take off be like? What would forward flight powered by the main engines be like?
Did the space shuttle even carry fuel for the main engines internally? Before posting this question, I tried to find the answer myself, but I've had trouble finding any mention of it, only talk about the external tank. It seems to me you might want to have at least a little, just in case. If it did carry fuel, how long might it be able to fly for that way?
Would there have been anyway to put a usable fuel tank in the cargo bay?
(I realize that this will mostly be speculation, just asking for fun, if that's frowned upon, please let me know)