AmericaSpace Launch Countdown

Next Launch AFSPC-4 on a Delta 4 - Medium+ rocket from Cape Canaveral AFB, FL scheduled for 28 Jul 14 22:43:00 GMT

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Hank Hartsfield, Shuttle Discovery's First Commander, Dies Aged 80

Hank Hartsfield (left), pictured with crewmate Ken Mattingly, shortly before the launch of STS-4 in June 1982. Photo Credit: NASA

Former NASA astronaut Hank Hartsfield, a veteran of three shuttle missions in the early 1980s—including command of the maiden voyage of the fleet leader, Discovery—passed away earlier today (Thursday, 17 July), reportedly due to [...]

'What's Tab November?': The Independence Day Mission of STS-4 (Part 2)

Columbia roars into orbit on 27 June 1982, kicking off the STS-4 mission. Photo Credit: Joachim Becker/SpaceFacts.de

More than three decades ago, on Independence Day (4 July) in 1982, Columbia triumphantly touched down at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., concluding the fourth shuttle mission. Aboard the reusable spacecraft were Commander Ken Mattingly and Pilot [...]

'A Hundred Flights ... ': The Independence Day Mission of STS-4 (Part 1)

Columbia touches down at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., on 4 July 1982, concluding the shuttle’s fourth and final Orbital Flight Test. Photo Credit: NASA

More than three decades ago, on Independence Day (4 July) in 1982, Columbia triumphantly touched down at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., concluding the fourth shuttle mission. Aboard the [...]

' ... T-9 Minutes and Counting ... ': NASA's First Secret Shuttle Flight

Since the conception of the manned spaceflight engineer programme, the intent was to fly a dedicated officer aboard each classified flight. For Mission 51C, it would be Air Force Major Gary Payton (back left). The other NASA crew members were Loren Shriver (front left) and Ken Mattingly (front right), with Jim Buchli and Ellison [...]

'There Is a Santa Claus': The Voyage of Apollo 8 (Part 2)

Hanging in the black sky, five degrees above the lunar horizon and with the terminator crossing Africa, this astonishing view of the Home Planet represented the first occasion on which human eyes glimpsed “Earthrise” from the Moon. It is a timeless image which continues to draw inspiration and wonder. Photo Credit: NASA

Forty-five years ago, [...]

Retro Space Images: Apollo 16 at Pad 39A

Photo Credit: J.L. Pickering / Retro Space Images

Launch Preparations: The lower portion of the Saturn V for the Apollo 16 mission is shown at Launch Complex 39A in late December 1971. The launch vehicle had originally been rolled to the pad on Dec. 13, 1971. Technical issues with the Command Module forced NASA to [...]

Smithsonian Opens New Exhibit: 'Suited for Space'

The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum held an event detailing the evolution of spacesuits entitled “Suited for Space.” Photo Credit: The Smithsonian Institute

WASHINGTON, DC — A new exhibit, dubbed “Suited for Space,” opened to the public Friday, July 26, 2013, at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum. It’s organized by the Smithsonian [...]

Retro Space Images: Opening the Door

Photo Credit: NASA / Retro Space Images

The Start of an Era — Remembering STS-4, launched on this date in 1982. Astronauts Hank Hartsfield and Ken Mattingly are shown at Pad 39A on May 29, 1982.

 

Like what you see? Then check out: Retro Space Images

Want to keep up-to-date with all things space? Be sure to [...]

Retro Space Images: Shock and Awe

The Saturn V, which would carry the Apollo 16 crew to the Moon, surrounded by lightning. Photo Credit: NASA / Retro Space Images

Light and Sound — Lightning dances around Apollo 15 on the eve of launch, July 25, 1971.

Like what you see? Then check out: Retro Space Images

Want to keep up-to-date with all things [...]

An ‘Operational’ Machine? Thirty Years Since STS-5 (Part 1)

STS-5 was the first ‘commercial’ Shuttle mission and featured the deployment of two telecommunications satellites – one for Satellite Business Systems and another for Telesat Canada – but the true nature of the reusable spacecraft as an operational vehicle remained inherently dangerous. Photo Credit: NASA

Thirty years ago, this week, the Space Shuttle completed [...]