Next Cygnus Cargo Ship Named for Columbia Astronaut Kalpana Chawla

@NorthropGrumman has named its upcoming #NG14 Cygnus cargo mission in honor of #Columbia astronaut Kalpana Chawla. […]

Remembering the Shuttle Night Landings (Part 2)

37 years after STS-8, AmericaSpace looks back at some of the highs & lows of landing the Space Shuttle at night. […]

Passing Ships: Remembering the Atlantis-Columbia Photo-Op, 30 Years On

Today, 30yrs ago, in one of the shuttle program’s greatest photo-ops, Columbia and Atlantis passed each other on their respective treks out and back to the launch pad. But why? […]

Beautiful Shoes: Americans Launching and Landing on the Fourth of July

On 4 July 1982, the crew of STS-4 became the first U.S. astronauts to spend Independence Day in space. It also marked the date of their spectacular return to Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Photo Credit: NASA

On the morning of 4 July 1982, a rapidly-moving black-and-white speck appeared on the horizon at Edwards […]

Lock the Doors: Remembering Columbia's Final Homecoming, OTD in 2003

As evidenced by the clock on the main screen at 14:15:05 GMT (9:15:05 am EST) on 1 February 2003, 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 […]

The Real Mission Impossible: Remembering STS-61C's Quest for Space

“Mission Impossible” finally launches as Columbia roars into the darkened Florida skies on 12 January 1986. Photo Credit: NASA

The opening weeks of each year are always tinged with sadness for America’s space program, as the nation observes a triplet of cruel anniversaries: the 1967 loss of Apollo 1 astronauts Virgil “Gus” Grissom, Ed […]

At Its Best: Remembering STS-32, Thirty Years On

Thirty years ago, this month, the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF) was plucked from orbit after almost six years. It was a triumphant moment as the Space Shuttle Program sought to recover from the loss of Challenger. Photo Credit: NASA

Thirty years ago, in January 1990, the Space Shuttle turned a corner. Long touted […]

'The Worst Coffee': Remembering Columbia's Return on STS-28, Thirty Years On (Part 2)

Columbia roars to orbit on 8 August 1989, beginning the first flight of her post-Challenger career. Photo Credit: NASA

Thirty years ago, this month, Space Shuttle Columbia returned to flight, following a three-year down time in the aftermath of the Challenger disaster. Aboard STS-28 for a five-day flight were Commander Brewster Shaw, Pilot Dick […]

'Off to a Good Start': Remembering Columbia's Return on STS-28, Thirty Years On (Part 1)

Columbia touches down at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., on 13 August 1989, to wrap up her first mission after the Challenger tragedy. Photo Credit: NASA

Astronaut Dick Richards was five weeks from his first launch into space when the Challenger disaster snatched the opportunity from him. In January 1985, Richards had been named […]

'For One Priceless Moment': Celebrating Apollo 11, 50th Anniversary Month (Part 4)

Buzz Aldrin stands before the U.S. flag at the Sea of Tranquility. Photo Credit: NASA

On Sunday, 20 July 1969, the Mission Operations Control Room (MOCR) at NASA’s Manned Spacecraft Center (MSC) in Houston, Texas, was filled with tension and expectant quiet. More than three billion people lived on Earth and three others—Apollo 11 […]