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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Fixing Solar Max: 30 Years Since Mission 41C (Part 2)

Backdropped by the glorious Earth, Challenger drifts serenely with Solar Max secured in her payload bay. Photo Credit: SpaceFacts.de

Thirty years ago today (6 April 1984), the shuttle launched on arguably its most ambitious mission to date: a mission which would demonstrate the reusable orbiter’s capabilities of rendezvous, retrieval, satellite repair, and spacewalking with [...]

Fixing Solar Max: 30 Years Since Mission 41C (Part 1)

Thirty years ago this week, Mission 41C put the shuttle’s capabilities to the test. In a single flight, the reusable vehicle demonstrated its capacity to support satellite deployment and retrieval, rendezvous and proximity operations, untethered spacewalking and robotics … and served as a highlight of the ingenuity of the human spirit. Photo Credit: SpaceFacts.de

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Wakata Assumes First Japanese ISS Command, as Kotov's Crew Prepares for Monday Night Homecoming

Outgoing Expedition 38 crewmen (bottom row, left to right) Mike Hopkins, Oleg Kotov, and Sergei Ryazansky are pictured with their new Expedition 39 comrades (top row, left to right) Koichi Wakata, Mikhail Tyurin, and Rick Mastracchio. The two crews have worked together as members of Expedition 38 since November 2013. Now, Wakata will lead [...]

To Swim in Space: The World’s First Spacewalk (Part 2)

Pictured on the pad at Baikonur, shortly before launch, Voskhod-2 was the Soviet Union’s last major space “first” of the 1960s. The blister at the top of the payload shroud, housing the craft’s airlock, is clearly visible. Photo Credit: Roscosmos

On 18 March 1965, a representative of humanity gained a view that only God or another [...]

To Swim in Space: The World’s First Spacewalk (Part 1)

Forty-nine years ago this month, Alexei Leonov became the first human to see the Earth, unhindered by the confines of a spacecraft, as God or another space traveller might see it. The experience almost cost him his life. Photo Credit: Roscosmos

From the moment he saw it, Alexei Leonov was captivated. He and a dozen other [...]

Dale Gardner, MMU Spacewalker, Dies Aged 65

Joe Allen (right, with red stripes on the legs of his suit) and Dale Gardner celebrate their success with a “For Sale” sign, displayed high above Westar and Earth. The triumphant Mission 51A would cement the shuttle’s credentials as infallible … but it was an infallibility which would usher in a mistaken sense of [...]

'Ready for a Margarita': 17 Years Since the Shuttle’s Second Hubble Servicing Mission (Part 2)

At the very “top” of the Hubble Space Telescope, astronauts Greg Harbaugh (left) and Joe Tanner work on the magnetometer cover task. Mark Lee compared Tanner’s ascent to riding his Harley. Photo Credit: NASA

Seventeen years ago this week, NASA launched its second shuttle Servicing Mission (SM-2) to the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). The [...]

'A Lot of Unknowns': 17 Years Since the Shuttle's Second Hubble Servicing Mission (Part 1)

Barely illuminated by sunlight, Joe Tanner is pictured during EVA-4 on STS-82. Photo Credit: NASA

Seventeen years ago this week, NASA launched its second shuttle Servicing Mission (SM-2) to the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). The $1.5 billion observatory has earned itself a well-deserved reputation as one of the most successful space-based instruments ever launched. [...]

'Vanilla to Chocolate': The Changing Mission of STS-54

The American eagle delivers a fifth star, representing the fifth operational Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS), in the STS-54 crew patch. Image Credit: NASA

When the STS-54 shuttle crew released their official crew patch in the summer of 1992, they paid tribute to two important payloads aboard their mission. The first was NASA’s [...]

'Is My Hair Gray?': The Story of Soyuz 4 and 5 (Part 2)

Possible scenario for how the ill-fated re-entry of Boris Volynov may have occurred. Soyuz 5 began its fall from orbit with the descent module’s hatch facing into the direction of travel, thus exposing the least-protected part of the spacecraft to the most extreme thermal stresses. Image Credit: Joachim Becker/SpaceFacts.de

To Yevgeni Khrunov the first [...]