Questions tagged [record]

Questions regarding extremes or records, such as the smallest, largest, first, last, heaviest, etc. of a thing or event.

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10 votes
2 answers
2k views

What is the lowest-inclination orbit ever achieved by a US crewed spacecraft?

The inclination range from KSC is advertised to be 28 to 62 degrees; what is the lowest inclination ever reached by a US crewed spacecraft?
13 votes
4 answers
2k views

What is the most widely used first-stage rocket engine in operation today?

I'm trying to do some research on this but very much struggling to work it all out. I'm looking for a cutaway diagram of said rocket engine (ideally one used on a first-stage), but I can't for the ...
2 votes
1 answer
69 views

What is the lowest inclination orbit ever achieved by a crewed Soyuz mission?

Inspired by a recent question regarding Soyuz capsules I wondered what is the lowest inclination Soyuz mission? Highest inclination human spaceflights have been asked about here before. Soyuz 22 may ...
10 votes
2 answers
1k views

Is this the longest that a spacecraft "went to sleep" and then woke up on schedule?

For various reasons, spacecraft are sometimes "put to sleep" for periods of time on long voyages. Many systems are shut down, and radio communications suspended. Tracking of spacecraft at very large ...
5 votes
0 answers
169 views

What are the largest distances between two spacecraft that have been determined to a meter or so accuracy? How were these done?

This answer to Radio Telescope / DSN Node in L4 and/or L5 presents the challenge of implementing "very long" VLBI using the ~1 AU distance between Earth and a Sun-Earth triangular libration ...
2 votes
0 answers
186 views

How many bubble levels have been used in space? Were any of them used some place besides the Moon?

The lunar retroreflectors left by Apollo astronauts had bubble levels and Sun compasses to that they could be oriented correctly with respect to Earth's average direction. This was necessary to ...
8 votes
1 answer
1k views

Which astronaut has experienced the largest relativistic shift in time (relative to Earth's surface)?

Following this answer and then this question (where I've linked to Cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev; the World's Most Prolific Time Traveller) I've noticed that currently Krikalev does not hold the precisely ...
12 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is there a record for unbroken series of "successful launches" by some objective criteria? Who has it now? What has to happen for it to change hands?

From the (I'd say) historic and pivotal hearing Wednesday, March 5, 2014 Defense Subcommittee (Chairman Durbin) Time and Location: 10:00 a.m., in Room SD-192 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building ...
6 votes
3 answers
2k views

Largest solar panel (by area) deployed in space? Largest below/at/above GEO?

NASA news item NASA’s Psyche Gets Huge Solar Arrays for Trip to Metal-Rich Asteroid At 800 square feet (75 square meters), the five-panel, cross-shaped solar arrays are the largest ever installed at ...
4 votes
1 answer
255 views

How beaten up would Voyager 1 be in 40,000 years?

How much damage would there be, both physically and to the computers, memory etc, upon arrival to Gliese 445 in 40k years by radiation and interstellar debris?
14 votes
2 answers
832 views

What's the furthest a probe has travelled from Earth before returning?

Inspired by this question, I've been wondering how far a probe has been from Earth, conducted its mission, then subsequently returned to Earth. I'm aware of the Hayabusa and Stardust missions, but I'...
3 votes
0 answers
57 views

Radio coherent transponders are the foundation of deep space navigation, have optical analogues been used? If so, the furthest distance measured?

Coherent radio transponders receive a signal from Earth containing specially encoded modulation, amplify it and retransmit it back to Earth. Correlating the received signal with the transmitted signal ...
4 votes
1 answer
289 views

Has a spacecraft ever actually sprayed a chemical (or anything) on to another spacecraft intentionally for any reason at all?

The question How many of these six military "orbital threat" techniques have been demonstrated in a (more or less) publicly recognized way? begins: If you are having a good day then under ...
4 votes
1 answer
287 views

Once in Earth orbit, what is the strongest propulsive acceleration an astronaut has experienced?

Early crewed launches subjected astronauts to large propulsive acceleration, usually right at the end of a stage before shut down and separation when the mass for that stage is minimum. (see ...
5 votes
1 answer
257 views

How often has the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy been in space?

I came across an answer saying that a copy of the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy was sent to space in Elon Musks roadster (in 2018). Has the book been in space before that (maybe taken to the ISS by ...
5 votes
1 answer
440 views

How many (presumably friendly) lasers are being shot at us from space? (pew! pew!)

Example: at first they could not decide which of the green laser-shooting satellites was responsible! Too many to choose from? See Science Alert's February 9, 2023, Ominous Green Lasers Shot Over ...
13 votes
3 answers
2k views

What were the biggest and heaviest spacecrafts to safely return from orbit?

How big a thing was able to land or splash down? Was there ever anything bigger or heavier than the Space Shuttle? If no then whats next on the list? And secondary question: what is the maximal ...
8 votes
1 answer
191 views

What is the longest working cubesat?

For example VZLUSAT-1 is 5 years old and it is still working.
2 votes
1 answer
122 views

Will astronauts on the Lunar Gateway beat the record Apollo 13 set for furthest distance from Earth?

This questiom states that the distance was 400038km with a lunar altitude of 254 km. As gateway will have a max. 70,000 km distance from the lunar south pole, it may break the record. However, because ...
15 votes
3 answers
2k views

Puzzler: Precisely what maximum distance from the Earth did the Apollo 13 astronauts achieve?

tl;dr: Both this answer to Which astronaut travelled farthest from Earth? this answer to How far have astronauts been in space? quote Wikipedia to state that the Apollo 13 astronauts reached 400,171 ...
6 votes
2 answers
240 views

Which deep-space spacecraft flew closest by Earth during a gravitational assist?

The extremely cool NASA JPL video Triumph at Saturn (Part I) is really worth a watch and/or listen. (Don't forget Part II as well!) At about 26:30 it discusses ...
2 votes
1 answer
344 views

Deep space marksmanship; will DART's intercept and impact trajectory represent the best ever if successful? If so, by how much?

The DART spacecraft will ultimately be a kinetic energy impactor, using its 500 kg mass at a relative velocity of over 6000 m/s to slightly change its target 65803 Didymos's companion Dimorphos's ...
5 votes
1 answer
280 views

Has Hubble ever focused on something close enough that it had to move away from being focused at infinity?

Hubble wouldn't have to change focus for Pranksat to work because Pranksat is cleverly designed to present a virtual image with a focus at infinity. But if the diffraction-limited Hubble wanted to ...
8 votes
2 answers
545 views

Most orbital launches in one day

There were 3 orbital launches on March 29 2018: Soyuz 2-1v GSLV Mk.2 Long March 3B Is it a record tie for most orbital launches on the same day (as expressed in local time)? If so, when it was set?...
3 votes
2 answers
150 views

Longest duration of a Moon orbiter?

From all the spacecraft that orbit or orbited the Moon, which one lasted the longest in lunar orbit? By defunct spacecraft includes.
4 votes
4 answers
2k views

What is the fastest we could travel in space, or have ever traveled in space?

What is the fastest vehicle currently in space? With our current technology, at what point does physics start to restrict our speed in space?
5 votes
1 answer
240 views

Largest single burn spacecraft delta-v in deep space?

This 700 m/s maneuver that was avoided got me thinking and then CNN's NASA mission will zoom by asteroid before returning sample to Earth said: "Leaving Bennu's vicinity in May puts us in the '...
7 votes
2 answers
4k views

What is the furthest from Earth that a military spacecraft is thought to have been intentionally deployed or moved to?

Space.com's Space Force plans to send a patrol probe out past the moon includes a quote from the new AFResearchLab video Cislunar Highway Patrol System (CHPS). "Until now, the United States ...
3 votes
1 answer
271 views

What's the highest latitude for a human spaceflight?

There are obviously many satellites in polar orbits or in orbits that extend to very high latitudes. There are obvious reasons to do this in terms of Earth observations, but there is probabably much ...
20 votes
6 answers
13k views

What artificial satellite has the farthest orbit around the Earth?

What is the furthest Earth orbiting satellite? What is its speed and purpose?
3 votes
0 answers
207 views

What was the most intense beam ever sent from Earth?

By a freak coincidence sensors on a passing alien ship a hundred light years away had picked up a faint artificial blip from Earth, thereby discovering our inhabited planet. But which blip was it? ...
2 votes
1 answer
99 views

What was the first successful two-stage-to-orbit launch by the US? What was the first attempt if different?

Wikipedia's Juno I (the launch vehicle for the first US satellite in orbit Explorer 1) begins: The Juno I was a four-stage American space launch vehicle, used to launch lightweight payloads into low ...
5 votes
1 answer
159 views

How does NASA count the order that people have entered space?

NASA has designated Matthias Maurer (crewmember of SpaceX CrewDragon 3) as the 600th person to fly in space. Leaving aside the question of whether those who flew with Branson and Bezos should be ...
5 votes
0 answers
77 views

What's the lowest and the highest ever recorded atmospheric pressure by a Mars lander?

What is the lowest and what's the highest ever recorded air pressure on Mars by an (either roving or stationary) Mars landing probe? As per the answer in this question of mine, it seems the highest ...
8 votes
1 answer
259 views

Why was ISEE-3 "the most cost-effective spacecraft we ever had"?

NPR's 2014 news article and audio podcast: Space Thief Or Hero? One Man's Quest To Reawaken An Old Friend quotes Robert Farquhar (NASA, Wikipedia) when discussing the ISEE-3 mission before the ISEE-3 ...
5 votes
1 answer
275 views

Will Artemis 2 and/or subsequent Artemis moon flights be able to break humanity's Earth distance record?

How high above the Moon are Artemis' Orion spacecraft going to orbit, in comparison to the Apollo spacecraft? Will their flights surpass or be able to surpass humanity's current record of the farthest ...
26 votes
4 answers
8k views

What is the largest number of humans in space at the same time and what vessels were they on when it happened?

What is the largest number of human beings in space at the same time, and what vessels were they on when it happened?
6 votes
1 answer
104 views

Was Tianwen-1 the first "triple-depl"? (orbiter-deploys-lander-deploys-rover-deploys-selfie cam) What are the highly hierarchical deep space missions?

What are the highly hierarchical deep space mission, those where one thing deploys the next which deploys the next... after leaving cis-lunar space. An example would be Tianwen-1 where a Mars orbiter ...
2 votes
0 answers
54 views

What is the largest single burn plane change maneuver executed in LEO?

Below 2000 km in low Earth orbit (or close to it), what is the largest propulsive plane change from a single burn? Expecting an answer in degrees, a named mission and vehicle executing the burn itself....
4 votes
1 answer
815 views

What were/are the stingiest and most generous vacuum nozzle? (records for the smallest and largest expansion ratios)

Vacuum nozzles are huge compared to their sea-level or atmospheric counterparts, as can be seen by comparing the first stage engines on an Electron or Falcon-9 to their second stages, where a big ...
5 votes
1 answer
224 views

Biggest orbital inclination change done in Earth's orbit

Generally orbital inclination change is said to be (fuel) expensive. What is the biggest orbital inclination change (in degrees) done in Earth's orbit for an orbiting object? Can this be broken down ...
3 votes
0 answers
72 views

Is SpaceX on the way to a reliability record? [duplicate]

One of the most striking phenomena of Falcon 9 launches is how smoothly they go, at least for the outside spectator. SpaceX launches a lot. Apparently, they have now had 109 successful missions in a ...
3 votes
1 answer
676 views

Shortest stay at the ISS once continuous operations and regular crew rotations began? How does Maezawa (planned) 12 days compare?

Confused about Yusaku Maezawa's first "standing on the shoulders of giants" PR photo on the shoulders of Elon Musk in 2018 then launching to the ISS aboard Soyuz, I found that the article ...
4 votes
0 answers
69 views

Currently, how many communications channels can a single DSN dish maintain at the same time? Are there plans to increase this in the future?

DSN NOW screenshot 2021-07-10 at 07:14 UTC DSN NOW screenshot 2021-07-10 at 09:48 UTC The screen shots show Canberra's Dish 35 simultaneously transmitting and receiving, and above it is written MRO, ...
3 votes
2 answers
609 views

Is New Shepard an orbit-capable first stage? Could an (albeit small) 2nd stage with propulsion be put on top that could put a smallsat into orbit?

This answer to How is New Shepard the first suborbital booster to successfully perform a powered vertical soft landing? discusses a potential differentiation between Falcon 9's first successful ...
6 votes
3 answers
256 views

How many independent demonstrations of optical communications between ground and space have been successful?

As everybody knows, the pioneering work of The Professor and his serendipitous collaborator Gilligan demonstrated the reality of ground to space optical communications back in 1964. In that case ...
3 votes
0 answers
214 views

Most dog-legged launch?

There are enough questions about dogleg maneuvers that there is now a dogleg tag, but the definitive dogleg answer is @JakeBlockers (linked below) which includes images of a dogleg from Florida that ...
7 votes
2 answers
543 views

What is the biggest satellite constellation in space right now?

What is the biggest, by the means of satellite amount, satellite constellation in space right now?
21 votes
1 answer
5k views

Who were the youngest and oldest persons in space?

In recent years there has been much talk about the possibility of establishing a permanent space colony somewhere in the solar system. If that happens it's plausible that within the next century ...
10 votes
3 answers
1k views

Was there an all-civilian space flight before Inspiration4?

Scott Manley remarked in a video, SpaceX's Latest Crew Mission Is Unlike Any Other: [Inspiration4 is] billed as the first all civilian space flight – that's the sort of tagline and frankly it's not ...