Clark, John F. Formerly, Spaceport Graduate Center, Florida Institute of Technology, Satellite Beach, Florida.
Mitchell, Jeffrey C. Spaceport Graduate Center, Florida Institute of Technology, Satellite Beach, Florida.
- Flight sequence
- Vehicle data
- Orbiter vehicle systems
- Flight testing
- Flight operations
- Payload accommodations
- Challenger disaster
- Return-to-flight actions
- Columbia disaster
- STS 114 return to flight
- Technical achievements
- Science accomplishments
- Safety upgrades
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A reusable crewed orbital transportation system. The space shuttle, along with crewless (robotic) expendable launch vehicles such as Atlas and Delta, made up the U.S. Space Transportation System (STS). The shuttle provided the unique capability for in-flight rendezvous with and retrieval of faulty or obsolescent satellites, followed by satellite repair, update, and return to orbit or return to Earth for repair and relaunch. The space shuttle also played an essential continuing role in the construction and provisioning of the International Space Station (ISS) by transporting major components, such as the giant solar-cell arrays, pressurized living modules, and the Canadian computer-driven double-ended robotic arm, from Earth to the ISS and installing them using extended extravehicular activity (EVA, or space walks) by trained ISS resident and shuttle-visiting astronauts. See also: Satellite (spacecraft); Space station
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