After checkout and processing, it was launched on Aug. 30, 1984, for its first mission, 41-D, to deploy three communications satellites. It's the world's most-flown spacecraft. Those streaks were inflicted primarily during re-entry to Earth's atmosphere, when Discovery experienced temperatures of up to to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1,650 degrees Celsius). (Collins also became the first female shuttle commander in history on Columbia's STS-93 mission in 1999, which deployed NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory.). ", NEXT: Put Hubble Space Telescope in Orbit. It flew nearly 150 million miles and spent 365 days in space, flying just about every type of mission during the shuttle era. Discovery also carried the first Russian cosmonaut ever to launch in an American spacecraft. Find out what we’re discovering. Educator-astronaut talks to 'kids at heart' for online talk Tuesday. Note: An earlier version of this story stated that Discovery flew the STS-93 mission in 1999. Each disaster took the lives of all seven astronauts aboard. Space Shuttle Discovery on display in the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar in the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA. More: airandspace.si.edu/discovery Related articles from airspacemag.com: Well traveled. One was sailed by Henry Hudson in 1610-11 to search for a northwest passage between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, and the other was helmed by James Cook on an 18th-century voyage during which he discovered the Hawaiian Islands. It has spent one year (365 days) in space. The space shuttle Discovery is going on display at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum just outside Washington, D.C., this week after taking one last flight atop its a modified Boeing 747 jet from  NASA's Florida spaceport on Tuesday (April 17). Discovery broke other barriers as well. This page was last modified on 21 October 2020, at 21:17. Those streaks were inflicted primarily during re-entry to Earth's atmosphere, when Discovery experienced temperatures of up to to 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit (1,650 degrees Celsius). NASA astronaut Eileen Collins piloted the shuttle's STS-63 mission in 1995. Please ensure your details are valid and try again. Each disaster took the lives of all seven astronauts aboard. It's not all fun and science onboard the Space Shuttle Discovery: it has carried many classified payloads. The miles traveled by Discovery could have carried it to the moon and back more than 300 times. Since that inaugural flight, Discovery has completed more than 30 successful missions, surpassing the number … 5 ways families can enjoy astronomy during the pandemic, Artificial intelligence helps classify new craters on Mars. Discovery's somewhat dingy appearance surprises many people who see the orbiter up close. Astronauts aboard Discovery deployed NASA's Hubble Space Telescope on the shuttle's STS-31 mission in April 1990. Its first mission, STS-41-D, flew from August 30 to September 5, 1984. Sleeping bags were attached to the walls of the shuttle's interior so that astronauts wouldn’t float … Discovery flew 39 space missions during its operational life, more than any other space shuttle — or any other spacecraft in history, for that matter. Discovery was the leader of NASA's space shuttle fleet, which retired in July after 30 years of service. It brought NASA back from tragedy, twice. It is named after RRS Discovery. Thank you for signing up to Space. It also put 148,221,675 miles on its odometer, another space shuttle record. Follow SPACE.com for the latest in space science and exploration news on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook. Ever wonder what it’s like to live and work in space? Discovery's somewhat dingy appearance surprises many people who see the venerable orbiter up close. Space Shuttle Discovery (Orbiter Vehicle Designation: OV-103) is one of the orbiters from NASA's Space Shuttle program and the third of five fully operational orbiters to be built. Receive news and offers from our other brands? What did that historic mission mean to you? Space Shuttle Discovery (Orbiter Vehicle Designation: OV-103) is one of the orbiters from NASA's Space Shuttle program and the third of five fully operational orbiters to be built. Visit our corporate site. NEXT: Launched John Glenn Back Into Orbit. Please refresh the page and try again. (The shuttles Columbia and Challenger debuted earlier, but both were lost along with their crews in tragic accidents.). Here are five interesting, and perhaps surprising, facts about the shuttle Discovery, which is due to be towed to the Smithsonian's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va., on Thursday (April 19): Discovery's somewhat dingy appearance surprises many people who see the orbiter up close. NY 10036. Though popular … "There are discolorations and streaks from going from orbit back into our environment here. A piece of insulation caused the devastation of the Columbia – it pierced the wing after breaking off. The orbiter blasted off for the first time in August 1984 and touched down for good in March 2011. Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer, NASA/Smithsonian Institution/Dane Penland. SpaceX now targeting Nov. 14 for next astronaut launch, Inspiring future space explorers: Q&A with former NASA astronaut Leland Melvin. Share your story and read what others have to say. But it would be strange if the shuttle gleamed a crisp, factory-floor white, considering how many times it's been to space and back (see below).10 Cool Facts About Shuttle Discovery Space is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Discovery rocketing into space, just after booster separation. It carried aloft three communications satellites for deployment by its astronaut crew. Apollo 11 was a global event. Yes, there's a video. 1, Mike Wall, SPACE.com Senior Writer
Space.com, Forget Your Comforter: These Cozy NASA Blankets Will Keep You Warm Like an Astronaut. That equals 288 round trips to the moon or about one and a half trips to the sun. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use Privacy Policy. The Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum has teamed up with Google Arts & Culture to give you a 360-degree tour of the Museum’s Space Shuttle Discovery. Thirty-six years earlier, in 1962, he had become the first American to orbit Earth. Here are five interesting, and perhaps surprising, facts about the shuttle Discovery, which is due to be towed to the Smithsonian's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va., on Thursday (April 19): Discovery's somewhat dingy appearance surprises many people who see the orbiter up close. Space Shuttle Discovery was the first shuttle to fly after both the Challenger and Columbia disasters in 1988 and 2003, respectively. Discovery weighed roughly 3600 kg (3.6t) less than Columbia when it was brought into service due to optimizations determined during the construction and testing of Enterprise, Columbia and Challenger. Receive mail from us on behalf of our trusted partners or sponsors? You will receive a verification email shortly. Receive news and offers from our other brands? Some content of the original page may have been edited to make it more suitable for younger readers, unless otherwise noted. Thirty-six years earlier, in 1962, he had become the first American to orbit Earth. In 2011, it made its millionth science observation. Don’t miss our fast-paced webcasts designed to engage students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math in 30 minutes. Space Shuttle Discovery (OV-103) is the third space shuttle run by NASA. Like other shuttles, the shuttle has three main components: the Space Shuttle orbiter, a central fuel tank, and two rocket boosters. Discovery's somewhat dingy appearance surprises many people who see the orbiter up close. 360-degree tour of the Museum’s Space Shuttle Discovery. Discovery was the first shuttle to launch after each of the shuttle program's tragedies, the January 1986 explosion of Challenger and the Feburary 2003 destruction of Columbia as it re-entered Earth's atmosphere. Our Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia has reopened. The space shuttle Discovery stands ready for liftoff at Launch Pad 39A at NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla. Future US, Inc. 11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, It notched more spaceflights than any other space shuttle, or any other spacecraft for that matter. Columbia actually made that flight, and the story has been corrected to reflect that fact. Discovery is the only shuttle ever to fly one of the Mercury Seven — NASA's first astronaut class, which was chosen in 1959. It was then flown aboard a 747 carrier aircraft to NASA's Kennedy Space Center, where it launched on its maiden mission in August 1984. Over the course of its 39 flights, Discovery logged a total of 365 days in space and put 148,221,675 miles (238,539,663 kilometers) on its odometer. Space Shuttle Discovery on display in the James S. McDonnell Space Hangar in the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, VA. More: airandspace.si.edu/discovery. Discovery was the first shuttle to launch after each of the shuttle program's two fatal tragedies, the January 1986 loss of Challenger shortly after liftoff and the Feburary 2003 destruction of Columbia as it re-entered Earth's atmosphere. Meet the zeptosecond, the shortest unit of time ever measured. And if you have a news tip, correction or comment, let us know at: community@space.com. Discovery flew one of NASA's original astronauts. 4. While Discovery is hard to miss at the Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, it's the details help tell the orbiter’s unique and important history. It was retired on 9 March 2011. It has traveled almost 143 million miles. Over the course of its 39 flights, Discovery logged a total of 365 days in space and put 148,221,675 miles (238,539,663 kilometers) on its odometer. Behind the shuttle, a nearly full moon sets. Its first mission, STS-41-D, flew from August 30 to September 5, 1984. NEXT: Discovery Returned NASA From Shuttle Tragedies. Nearly 25,000 heat resistant tiles cover the orbiter to protect it from high temperatures on re-entry. It embarked on its last mission, STS-133, on February 24, 2011 and touched down for the final time at Kennedy Space Center on March 9, having spent a cumulative total of almost a full year in space. Its first mission, STS-41-D, flew from August 30 to September 5, 1984.Over 27 years of service it launched and landed 39 times, gathering more spaceflights than any other spacecraft to date. The space shuttle Discovery is going on display at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum just outside Washington, D.C., this week after taking one last flight atop its a modified Boeing 747 jet from  NASA's Florida spaceport on Tuesday (April 17). Please deactivate your ad blocker in order to see our subscription offer. Discovery's return-to-flight missions launched in September 1988 and July 2005, respectively, following substantial safety modifications for the orbiter fleet.

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