December 3, 2016

STS-103 Hubble Servicing Mission Launch (1999)

Servicing Mission 3A, flown by Discovery for the STS-103 mission, was a split-off from Servicing Mission 3 after three of the six onboard gyroscopes had failed. A fourth failed a few weeks before the mission, rendering the telescope incapable of performing scientific observations. The mission replaced all six gyroscopes, replaced a Fine Guidance Sensor and the computer, installed a Voltage/temperature Improvement Kit (VIK) to prevent battery overcharging, and replaced thermal insulation … [Read more...]

Apollo 12 Launch (1969)

Apollo 12 was the sixth manned flight in the United States Apollo program and the second to land on the Moon. It launched four months after Apollo 11. Mission commander Charles "Pete" Conrad and Lunar Module Pilot Alan L. Bean performed just over one day and seven hours of lunar surface activity while Command Module Pilot Richard F. Gordon remained in lunar orbit. The landing site for the mission was located in the southeastern portion of the Ocean of Storms. … [Read more...]

STS-74 Launch to Mir (1995)

STS-74 was the fourth mission of the US/Russian Shuttle-Mir Program, and the second docking of the space shuttle with the Russian Mir space station. Space Shuttle Atlantis lifted off from Kennedy Space Center launch pad 39A on 12 November 1995. The mission ended 8 days later with the landing of Atlantis back at Kennedy. Onboard the Shuttle were commander Ken Cameron on his third spaceflight, pilot James Halsell on his second spaceflight, and mission specialists Jerry Ross on his fifth … [Read more...]

STS-61A Launch (1985)

Thirtieth anniversary of STS-61A, the 22nd mission of NASA's Space Shuttle program and the mission that holds the current record for the largest crew--eight people--aboard a single spacecraft for the duration of a mission (launch to landing). This mission was a Spacelab mission funded and managed by West Germany. There were 76 scientific experiments onboard and the crew was split into two teams working split shifts to maximize research time. The crew consisted of Commander Henry Hartsfield … [Read more...]

STS-73 Launch (1995)

Launched 20 years ago on this day, STS-73 was a 16-day mission flown by Space Shuttle Columbia and her crew of 7 astronauts. It was the second mission for the United States Microgravity Laboratory (Spacelab) and NASA maximized on-orbit research time by splitting the crew into two teams operating on opposite shifts. Serving on his third spaceflight, Ken Bowersox commanded the mission. Kathryn Thornton served as a mission specialist; the mission was her fourth spaceflight. The 5 other crew … [Read more...]