Questions tagged [space-shuttle]

The Space Shuttle was a crewed, partially reusable low Earth orbital spacecraft operated by NASA from 1981 to 2011.

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1answer
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Did anyone piloting a Space Shuttle ever make a significant pilot error?

Did anyone piloting a Space Shuttle ever make a significant pilot error? (I've never heard of any, and I'm curious if that is due to their extensive training, or if it's just that that sort of ...
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Are there any photo(s) of International Space Station (ISS) captured from above its altitude? [duplicate]

Are there any attempts made to capture an image of the whole ISS in one take? Or is it not currently practically possible? If Soyuz, SpaceX Dragon, etc. have cameras installed on them, images can be ...
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What is the limit to which we can scale up uniformly in all directions Space Shuttle SRB before it becomes unable to take off?

Let's say we like the Space Shuttle design so much, we want to use it as a reference for our new rocket. But we want to build rocket which will be capable of launching larger payload into Earth's ...
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How hard was it for the Shuttle to perform attitude control for the entire ISS? Did they have to calibrate?

This answer to the question How was the Space Shuttle Orbiter used for ISS Reboost? describes a procedure I never knew happened. When the shuttle was docked to the ISS it sometimes used its rear ...
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Why will SLS Block I bring less mass to LEO than the STS shuttle system did?

The Space Transportation System (STS) could bring a fully loaded shuttle orbiter of 109 tons to orbit (or maybe empty+payload 68+25=93 tons). The Space Launch System (SLS) Block I is based on STS, but ...
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Did each Shuttle have its own dedicated Canadarm?

Five Canadarm robotic arms were built. Five space shuttle orbiters were flown to space. Did each orbiter have its own dedicated Canadarm? Or were they rather moved around from orbiter to orbiter, ...
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What are “applied moments of inertia” in the context of STS-61B's EASE/ACCESS?

This answer links to https://history.nasa.gov/spacesuits.pdf which shows the image below. (fyi Wikipedia's STS-61 is not to be confused with STS-61A, STS-61B or STS-61C, see answers to Why so many STS-...
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Why so many STS-61's?

Wikipedia's STS-61 says that it is not to be confused with STS-61A, STS-61B or STS-61C. Why were there so many STS missions where the name included the number "61"?
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What were the differences between the STS Orbiters?

There were six STS orbiter vehicles, of which five were operational for space flight: OV-099: Space Shuttle Challenger OV-101: Space Shuttle Enterprise OV-102: Space Shuttle Columbia OV-103: Space ...
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Why were the Space Shuttle's main engines placed on the orbiter?

Since the main engines can't be used after external tank separation, what's the reason for having the engines on the orbiter rather than just building a third rocket on the stack instead of the ...
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Would it have been possible to have sent the Space Shuttle around the Moon?

I'm curious about whether or not the Space Shuttle could have been used as a lunar orbit vehicle - basically, would have it been technically capable of getting to the Moon, entering orbit, then ...
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How much of the printed materials (manuals, instructions etc.) were allocated for the crew's use in Space Shuttles?

Whilst watching youtube video of an occasional Soyuz spacecraft launch (Soyuz ТМА-19М in this case), I've noticed (at 8:07) this large bundle of books. Another video of TMA-16M flight at 39:40 shows ...
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Is there any compiler available for HAL/S?

The HAL/S programming language is used in the general purpose computers in the space shuttle. I have written a simple HAL/S program of my own. Is there any compiler available to turn it into ...
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Why didn't the space shuttle use non-foam-shedding external tanks?

Throughout its lifetime, the Space Shuttle's external tank had severe problems with portions of its foam insulation coming apart and falling off, which NASA was never able to fix. The flying ...
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What are the sparks flying at the bottom of SSMEs at the time of launch?

I saw the sparks flying at the bottom of SSME just before the launch in below video. Are they used for igniting the excess propellant gas? [9 min 24 sec][1]
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Why were Space Shuttle astronauts able to walk off the orbiter?

I am watching loads of ISS related videos and there is one detail I recently noticed; At the time, when Space Shuttles were still in operation and visiting ISS, when astronauts returned home, they ...
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Could the shuttle wait out the whole burn of SRBs on launchpad in case of a problem on launch?

Somewhere on this site I read that in NASA, the rocket leaves the launchpad (through release of explosive bolts) only after the engines have attained full power. Assuming in the scarce seconds ...
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Where are the lost RS-25D Block 2 engines?

There were 21 RS-25D Block 2 engines made. Two of them never flew. Three of them were lost with the Columbia disaster. 16 of them are tagged for SLS's use, including 14 previously flown, and the two ...
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What's the largest rocket that was carried to space inside a Space Shuttle?

Why did the Ulysses probe reach Jupiter much faster than Galileo? got me wondering about the largest rocket that was carried to space inside a Space Shuttle. Largest in terms of some performance ...
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How many Space Shuttle payloads ended up beyond Earth orbit?

Before I'd read Why did the Ulysses probe reach Jupiter much faster than Galileo? and this answer to What's the largest rocket that was carried to space inside a Space Shuttle? I never really ...
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Why did the Ulysses probe reach Jupiter much faster than Galileo?

Both Ulysses and Galileo were launched by the Space Shuttle and the Inertial Upper Stage (IUS). Yet Ulysses only took 16 months to reach Jupiter, while Galileo took 6 years. Is it because Galileo ...
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Given unlimited funding and global cooperation, could there have been a manned space craft made in the year 1850-1860? [closed]

All my life, I've been speculating in my head about all kinds of "alternative timelines". One of the most intriguing to me are all the ones that concern space and "steampunk" technology. Recently, I ...
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Music played in space

Besides the Curiosity rovers's rendition of Happy Birthday and Chris Hadfields guitar playing aboard the ISS, is there a list of music played in space live (robots playing music counts too)? Note: ...
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First actions taken after identifying a potentially catastrophic decompression?

Organic Marble gave an answer to my question "Procedures if there was a shuttle decompression in the vacuum of space," precisely as I worded the request. The wording of my question was imprecise so ...
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Procedures if there was a shuttle decompression in the vacuum of space

Has NASA ever published what the space shuttle astronauts would be tasked to do if a potentially catastrophic decompression occurred in space.
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Why was the reusability of the SSMEs so poor, and why was this considered acceptable given their purpose to launch a reusable vehicle?

The Space Shuttle Main Engines operated for around 8.5 minutes in every Shuttle launch, yet were removed from the orbiter after each flight and went through an overhaul, parts often being traded from ...
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What is this large fan in front of the Space Shuttle during Ground Turnaround?

In this amazing video of multiple camera angles of Endeavour landing and post-landing processing, at around the 15:45–15:56 minute mark, we see a large propeller running in front of the Orbiter. It ...
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Technology: How would a state-of-the-art space shuttle be built?

As the title states, if a space shuttle 2.0 were to be built with current technology, in which ways or areas might it be superior to the original space shuttle? Which components are most ripe for ...
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Was there really a shuttle toilet training device with a “boresight camera”?

Was there really a shuttle toilet training device with a camera looking up at the user's fundament? This seems a bit undignified to say the least.
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How could aerodynamic forces break up the Challenger orbiter?

Wikipedia's explanation of the sequence of events: The O-ring failure caused a breach in the SRB joint it sealed, allowing pressurized hot gas from within the solid rocket motor to reach the ...
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What was the primary role of epoxy layer between metal structure and insulation foam on External Tank of Space Shuttle?

Whilst looking for information regarding Shuttle's External Tank insulation, I came across this answer to this question Structural composition of shuttle liquid fuel tank wall. The answer states that ...
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Were there any cases of woodpeckers damaging Shuttle External Tank insulation other than that of STS-70?

While researching information about Shuttle External Tank insulation, I came across this quite unusual problem: woodpeckers! The Wikipedia entry on STS-70 states that: ... on 31 May 1995 shuttle ...
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Structural composition of shuttle liquid fuel tank wall

Somewhere I read the shuttle fuel tank kept structural integrity only thanks to internal pressure of the fuel, a'la inflated balloon; empty it would collapse under own weight; and the walls were ...
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I am looking for information on the power connector used on the Space Shuttle to power a GridCase 1530 laptop

I have done continuity tests on the 3 pins. 1 is obviously ( from the continuity tests ) a ground pin. 1 is switched by the power switch. 1 has resistance and seems to change impedance when the power ...
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Why was the shuttle landing crosswind limit reduced for longer missions

Answering a question about inclement shuttle landings, OrganicMarble quotes from a summary of landing rules: The peak crosswind cannot exceed 15 knots, 12 knots at night. If the mission duration is ...
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Did any of the Space Shuttles land through rain or rainclouds?

My web research resulted in figuring out that launching Space Shuttles in rain, apart from lightning, wind and turbulence related problems, wasn't permitted due to: brittleness of the heat shield ...
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How did the Rotating Service Structure achieve environment control?

The main purpose of the Rotating Service Structure on the Space Shuttle launchpads is to have a clean environment to transfer payloads into the orbiter payload bay: The major feature of the ...
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Shuttle silica ceramics black tiles

Since other members wrote, that my my original question here Shuttle silica ceramics black tiles? was too broad I modified it to asked just one thing, while the other questions I will asked later. ...
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What was the operational lifetime of a shuttle tile?

The statement "While some of the individual tiles on the shuttle might last 10 missions" from this excellent answer has led a questioner to make the statement "someone here at Space Stack-Exchange ...
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Shuttle main engines RS-25, material damage on parts that needed replacement/refurbishment

Since other members wrote, that my my original question here Shuttle main engines RS-25 refurbishment/material damage was too broad I modified it to asked just one thing, while the other questions I ...
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Does space sickness determine when astronauts have their last meal?

During the shuttle program how long before launch would an astronaut eat? With almost 50% of astronauts experiencing space adaptation syndrome, and the possibility of vomiting, did the astronauts ...
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Shuttle main engines RS-25 refurbishment/material damage

There was some thread here on Space Stack-Exchange about RS-25 refurbishment, but I am interested now, how this refurbishment look from the point of material damage of SSME hardware. In the early ...
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Shuttle RCC (reinforced carbon-carbon) panels?

Shuttle RCC panels (22 panels together) were used on shuttle wing leading edge, nose cone, 0.25-0.5 inch thick and tough like concrete. link https://www.nasa.gov/centers/kennedy/pdf/167473main_TPS-...
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Shuttle silica ceramics black tiles? [closed]

Shuttle silica ceramics black tiles, were mostly air and so fragile that you can break, crush them with the force of your hands (quote from NASA documentary). They were usually damaged by ice in upper ...
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Why would the Shuttle-Transtage have been unusable for science missions?

In the 1970s and early 1980s, NASA and the DoD evaluated four different existing or proposed upper stages for use with the space shuttle: The Centaur hydrolox stage (specifically, the Centaur G/G' ...
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Space Shuttle Stack alignment

The Space Shuttle is a good example of asymmetric launch vehicle. It required heavily-gimballing engines to keep everything balanced. As a KSP enthusiast, I found that attaching the external tank to ...
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Seeing the ground from the shuttle before launch?

With the side windows in space shuttle cockpit, as seen in this photograph, could the commander and pilot see the ground at all before launch or during the first 10-15 seconds of a shuttle ascent? ...
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Unusual position of shuttle astronauts' arms during ascent

During the ascent of STS-135 the astronauts seem to be keeping their elbows up away from their sides with their hands forward. It can be seen throughout the ascent, here are two clips when it happens....
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Why did a shuttle astronaut have an open book during ascent?

In the top right of the video of a shuttle launch an astronaut has an open book resting on (attached to?) the left thigh. What was the purpose of this book? The astronaut then seems to take a pen or ...
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Space Shuttle RTLS in 3-engine-out: what does it use for propulsion?

For a three-engine-out abort, there's a couple of great diagrams provided in the answer at https://space.stackexchange.com/a/39733/11532 showing different abort contingencies. One contingency plan is ...

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