AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch Luch-5V on a Proton-M rocket from Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan scheduled for 28 Apr 14 4:25:00 GMT

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Three Space Shuttle Veterans Inducted into Astronaut Hall of Fame

Numerous members of the Astronaut Hall of Fame welcomed Bonnie Dunbar, Curt Brown, and Eileen Collins into their ranks today at a ceremony held at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida. Photo Credit: Mark Usciak / AmericaSpace

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, Fla — Three space shuttle veterans, including the first woman to command a [...]

30 Years Since STS-6: The Rise of the Challenger (Part 1)

Challenger rolls in gloomy midwinter fog towards Pad 39A on 30 November 1982. Photo Credit: NASA

Thirty years ago this week, America’s second space shuttle thundered into orbit for the first time. Challenger spent five days circling the Home Planet, deployed a giant communications and data-relay satellite for NASA, and saw the first U.S. [...]

'A Kind of Wheelie': The Desert Landing of STS-3

Flanked by two NASA T-38 jets, flying chase, Columbia touches down in the mountain-ringed expanse of White Sands Missile Range on 30 March 1982. Photo Credit: NASA

More than three decades ago—and two full years ahead of the first shuttle launch—NASA took the unusual step of picking a great white blotch of compacted salt [...]

In the Shadow of Challenger: The Found Mission of STS-35 (Part 2)

Pictured in September 1990, the problem-plagued STS-35/Columbia stack is shown in the foreground, on Pad 39A, with the STS-41/Discovery stack in the background on Pad 39B. Discovery would be the only orbiter to escape the disconnect crisis in the summer of 1990, but would succumb to her own problems the following year. Photo Credit: NASA

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In the Shadow of Challenger: The Lost Mission of STS-61E (Part 1)

Had Challenger not been lost, these seven men were the next scheduled shuttle crew. Seated from left to right are Pilot Dick Richards, Commander Jon McBride, and Mission Specialist Dave Leestma, the “orbiter” crew in charge of shuttle systems. Standing from left to right are the “science” crew: Payload Specialist Sam Durrance, Mission Specialists [...]

Looking Back: Day of Remembrance Held Marking 10th Anniversary of Columbia Disaster

NASA and the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, along with the Astronauts Memorial Foundation, held a “Day of Remembrance” to honor those that lost their lives in the pursuit of space exploration, on Feb. 1, 2013, the 10th anniversary of the Columbia disaster. Photo Credit: Julian Leek / Blue Sawtooth Studio

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla [...]

'Not in This Lifetime': The Final Minutes of Columbia (Part 3)

Hundreds of balloons and floral tributes are laid outside the gates of the Johnson Space Center in the days after the tragedy. Photo Credit: NASA

A few seconds after 8:58 a.m. EST on 1 February 2003, the otherwise normal re-entry profile of Columbia—which was already displaying many abnormal characteristics—changed abruptly from a vehicle barely [...]

'Losing the Battle': The Final Minutes of Columbia (Part 2)

As evidenced by the clock on the main screen at 14:15:05 GMT (9:15:05 a.m. EST), this view of a tense Mission Control was acquired a quarter of an hour after the first sign of trouble … and a minute ahead of Columbia’s expected landing. By now, everyone was aware that all hope was gone [...]

'Probably Waylon Jennings': The Final Minutes of Columbia (Part 1)

Pictured from Columbia’s aft flight deck, this view shows the payload bay and Spacehab research double module. The grey-colored RCC panels lining the leading edges of the wings can clearly be seen, but the Panel 8/9 junction on the left wing (to the right of this image) is out of sight. Investigators would later [...]

'Lock the Doors': Columbia’s Final Flight (Part 4)

As evidenced by the clock on the main screen at 14:15:05 GMT (9:15:05 a.m. EST), this view of a tense Mission Control was acquired a quarter of an hour after the first sign of trouble … and a minute ahead of Columbia’s expected landing. By now, everyone was aware that all hope was gone [...]