The question Pre-launch TLEs for NASA launches asks:

I was curious if the United States is on the verge of launching maned flights to the ISS, will anyone release Pre-Launch TLE data like was done back when the shuttle was flying.

Question: Who released pre-launch TLE data for the Space Shuttle? Where was it posted? Are any of these still around? Who was generating them?

I'm not asking about official TLEs, only about predictions of the Shuttle's planned trajectory into orbit, using a standard TLE format.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ "I think that some of the internet may have existed way back then" The shuttle flew until 2011.... $\endgroup$ Mar 2, 2019 at 14:46
  • 3
    $\begingroup$ @OrganicMarble It's self-deprecating humor, but it may be too obtuse so I'll find a way to adjust... $\endgroup$
    – uhoh
    Mar 2, 2019 at 14:47

1 Answer 1


There was once a NASA educational service called SPACELINK at Marshall Space Flight Center. One of its products was TLEs for Shuttle missions...

NASA's SPACELINK carries shuttle elements, both during a flight and prior to it. They also have a file of elements for the more visual satellites.

(emphasis mine)


SPACELINK offered its info up via telnet and ftp...or dialup..


SpaceLink is an online service located at Marshall Space Flight Center 
in Huntsville, Alabama. The system is specifically designed for 
teachers. The data base is arranged to provide easy access to current 
and historical information on NASA aeronautics, space research, and 
technology transfer information. Also included are suggested classroom 
activities that incorporate information on NASA projects to teach a 
number of scientific principles. Unlike bulletin board systems, NASA 
Spacelink does not provide for interaction between callers. However it 
does allow teachers and other callers to leave questions and comments 
for NASA which may be answered by regular mail. Messages are answered 
electronically, even to acknowledge requests which will be fulfilled by 
mail. Messages are generally handled the next working day except during 
missions when turnaround times increase. The mail system is closed-loop 
between the user and NASA.

SpaceLink also offers downloadable shareware and public domain programs 
useful for science educators as well as space graphics and GIF images 
from NASA's planetary probes and the Hubble Telescope.

You can access SpaceLink via


Or you can dial in at (205)-895-0028 (300/1200/2400/9600(V.32) baud, 8 
bits, no parity, 1 stop bit).


As part of the general destruction of NASA's once useful public online presence, SPACELINK was decommissioned and merged into nasa.gov

NASA Spacelink has Moved

NASA Spacelink and other information providers across NASA are moving content into the NASA home page. The NASA home page is now the best place to find the type of content you have come to expect from Spacelink. The Spacelink team looks forward to serving you through NASA's premier Web site.


For a cane-waving aside, I used to get the TLEs over ftp and use them in the DOS program STSPLUS (which can still be made to work using DosBox or similar). There is a nice tribute to and information about STSPLUS on CelesTrak here

enter image description here


Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.