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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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 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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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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Why would a space shuttle have flown a normal first-stage and early-second-stage ascent trajectory during an RTLS abort?

Had a space shuttle suffered a main-engine failure very early on during ascent, or had a time-critical emergency (for instance, a crewmember unexpectedly having a stroke) occurred before negative ...
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What (if anything) could have caused all three shuttle main engines to stop at the same time?

From my previous question, you'd have a bad time if it happened. What could cause it to happen, if anything? My parameters are: The engines must STOP, but not destroy the vehicle simply by having ...
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In a shuttle launch, what would have happened if all three SSMEs failed during flight?

I'm certain there are several flight regimes where this could happen, and that the procedures should be different for each one. For instance, this is a very different question before lift off than it ...
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What was the minimum throttle setting a SSME could be operated at while in Flight?

A very informative article on the RS-25 (SSME) indicates that it could be throttled from 67% to 109%. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space_Shuttle_Main_Engine) I know on 51L the data indicates the ...
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Where did the Wake Shield Facility end up?

The Wake Shield... ... was deployed in the wake of the Space Shuttle at an orbital altitude of over 300 kilometers (186 mi), within the thermosphere, where the atmosphere is exceedingly tenuous....
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Crew Positioning in ISS during Reboost

Several questions address the reboosting procedure for the ISS. When the shuttle reboosted the station, apparently the entire ISS was modeled on the ground and pre-programmed in, down to the masses ...
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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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Was the payload bay of the Space Shuttle depressurized before launch?

We know that the payload bay of the Space Shuttle Orbiter carried satellites, pieces of equipment for repairing satellites and components of the International Space Station. Was the payload bay of ...
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How was the Space Shuttle Orbiter used for ISS Reboost?

According to this answer, for the question How often does ISS require re-boosting to higher orbit?, During Space Shuttle years, small re-boosts were also performed by the Shuttle Orbiters (...
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What happens after a crew finishes putting out a fire?

I was reading the question How do we use Fire Extinguishers to Control Fire in the Space Station? This got me thinking about how the crew would clean-up after a fire. How do they decide if the ...
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Did the shuttle SRBs have separation motors?

Looking at a NASA fact sheet about the SLS SRBs and I noticed it has at the bottom around the nozzle, separation motors. Watching shuttle launches It looks to me like the SRBs continue to fire ...
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Stars visible during ascent?

Did any shuttle astronaut indicate at what altitude they were first able to see the stars during an ascent to orbit at sunrise? Yeagar seeing the stars in The Right Stuff. For illustration purposes ...
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Radar Altimeter in Space Shuttle

I was going throught the Space Shuttle Handbook, chapter Guidance and Navigation. In one of the Note boxes, it is written Radar altimeter altitude is not used for navigation or guidance. The ...
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Why is the Space Shuttle's External Tank fuelled through the Orbiter's main engine plumbing system?

This answer states that Space Shuttle's External Tank (ET) was fuelled (this process is known as Tanking) through the Orbiter's main engine plumbing system with the Tail Service Masts (TSM). One ...
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How was the space shuttle fuelled?

How was the external fuel tank filled with LH2 and LOX while the shuttle was on the launch pad? I know there was a gaseous oxygen umbilical on the top of the ET and a gaseous hydrogen umbilical about ...
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How much does a cordless screwdriver for space cost?

I wonder how much a cordless space screwdriver costs and what its mass would be? I guess it would be a lithium-ion screwdriver, like on Earth, but would it have other specifications? Does anybody ...
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Loading tanks for supercritical oxygen and hydrogen on the launch pad, how to achieve low temperature and high pressure?

The Apollo and Shuttle spacecrafts used fuel cells for the production of electric energy and water. The hydrogen and oxygen for the fuel cells were stored as a supercritical fluid at a temperature ...
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Documented economics of STS Solid Rocket Booster reuse?

I often see the claim that the Shuttle SRBs cost as much to recover & refurb as it would to build a new one. I've probably even parroted this claim myself. But, are there any actual studies or ...
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Did Feynman cite a fallacy about only circles having the same width in all directions as a reason for the Challenger disaster?

In a Math Overflow post about mathematical fallacies it was stated that: Richard Feynman regarded the mistake that a "circle is the only figure which has the same width in all directions" as one ...
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Why was the nose cone on the Space Shuttle's external tank pointy?

Inspired by comments under this answer to this question Just how pointy does a rocket's nosecone need to be? (see also Why are the nose cones of current spacecraft less pointy?) Why was the ...
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How are physical attitude indicators actuated?

The Apollo FDAIs and shuttle ADIs (pre-MEDS) indicated spacecraft attitude with an actual ball that was spun around in a cage. I've seen photos of some of these removed from their cases, but ...
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Is there such thing as plasma (from reentry) creating lift?

The following was claimed on the aviation site: In 1981, after years of development and testing, Columbia made its maiden voyage into orbit. Unexpectedly, on re-entry, the nose pitched up much ...
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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 did the Space Shuttle's SRB's float, and float vertically?

The blogpost Lessons From NASA Disasters: When Curiosity Deficits Kill is about the importance of freedom of curiosity for members of organizations. However it contains many Space Shuttle-related ...
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explosive force equivalent

i've seen 1 link that would direct me to a site that gave an equivalent of what would happen if a SATURN 5 let go on the pad, but not the Shuttle, was wondering what the force equivalent would be if ...
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How was the Shuttle loaded and unloaded from its carrier aircraft?

The Space Shuttle was ferried to various locations by the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft. How was the shuttle put on and taken off the SCA? (Previously mentioned in this comment but never asked or ...