We Will Shake Your Hand: 25 Years Since STS-63’s Near-Mir Mission (Part 2)

Valeri Polyakov, pictured at Mir’s windows during the STS-63 shuttle rendezvous mission in February 1995, is the incumbent record-holder for the longest single spaceflight. Photo Credit: NASA, via Joachim Becker/SpaceFacts.de

Last week, U.S. astronaut Christina Koch returned safely to Earth, wrapping up the longest single space mission ever accomplished by a woman; an astonishing […]

By Even A Centimeter: Remembering the Near-Mir Mission, 25 Years On (Part 1)

The Mir space station, as viewed by the crew of STS-63. Photo Credit: NASA

A quarter-century ago this month, in February 1995, the astronauts (and a single cosmonaut) of shuttle Discovery roared into the night on a mission which performed the first rendezvous with Russia’s Mir space station. During their eight days in space, […]

Remembering Shuttle Discovery's Miracle Mission 51C, 35 Years On (Part 2)

Discovery touches down at the Kennedy Space Center on 27 January 1985, following the shortest operational flight in the shuttle’s 30-year history. Photo Credit: NASA

Thirty-five years ago, this week, the crew of shuttle Discovery—Apollo veteran Ken Mattingly, together with “rookie” astronauts Loren Shriver, Jim Buchli and Ellison Onizuka and Air Force Manned Spaceflight […]

Remembering Shuttle Discovery's Miracle Mission, 35 Years On (Part 1)

Thirty-five years ago, this week, Discovery flew Mission 51C, the shuttle’s first totally classified mission. Photo Credit: NASA

“Miracle” is a term often applied to many aspects of the space program: from Yuri Gagarin’s pioneering flight aboard Vostok 1 to the historic first manned lunar landing and from the triumph of Apollo 13 to […]

Picture of Santa: Remembering Discovery's Date With Hubble, 20 Years On (Part 2)

The STS-103 astronauts were the only Space Shuttle crew to celebrate Christmas in orbit, way back in 1999. Photo Credit: NASA

Twenty years ago, seven astronauts spent Christmas Day in space, peering from the windows of shuttle Discovery. STS-103 in December 1999 marked the only occasion in the shuttle program’s three decades of service […]

Power and Speed: Remembering Discovery's Date With Hubble, 20 Years On (Part 1)

Orbital sunrise causes the solar arrays of the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) to glisten in this spectacular view from STS-103. Photo Credit: NASA

Twenty years ago, as the world neared the dawn of a new millennium, the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) circled the globe in urgent need of servicing and repair. By December 1999, […]

EVAs and More on 'Sixty-Four: Remembering STS-64, 25 Years On (Part 2)

Spacewalkers Mark Lee (right) and Carl Meade work above Discovery’s payload bay during STS-64, 25 years ago, this month. Below them is the large telescope of their primary payload, the Lidar In-Space Technology Experiment (LITE) and, just behind it, the gold-colored mass of the SPARTAN solar physics satellite. Photo Credit: NASA

A quarter-century ago, […]

Flying Free With Meade and Lee: Remembering STS-64, 25 Years On (Part 1)

Twenty-five years ago, this month, STS-64 astronauts Mark Lee (pictured here) and Carl Meade performed the first untethered spacewalk with the Simplified Aid for EVA Rescue (SAFER). Photo Credit: NASA

On 123 occasions between March 1965 and September 1994, astronauts and cosmonauts had clambered outside their spacecraft and maneuvered themselves around in the harsh […]

Shrinking Triton: Remembering Voyager 2's Encounter With Neptune, 30 Years On (Part 4)

Neptune, as seen by Voyager 2 in 1989. No other missions have yet returned to this enigmatic world. Photo Credit: NASA/JPL

READ Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of AmericaSpace’s Neptune 30th anniversary commemorative feature.

Thirty years ago today, NASA’s Voyager 2 spacecraft swept silently over the royal-blue clouds of Neptune at […]

Gold Star for an Admiral: Remembering Astronaut Dave Griggs, 30 Years On

Dave Griggs, pictured during the Space Shuttle program’s first contingency spacewalk in April 1985, lost his life 30 years ago this month. Photo Credit: NASA

Thirty years ago, America’s Space Shuttle program had risen from the depths of despair—following the calamitous loss of Challenger—to a triumphant return-to-flight and the three surviving orbiters, Columbia, Discovery […]