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Europe's Galileo navigation system set for expansion

Two satellites are buttoned up on top of a Soyuz rocket for launch Friday to join Europe's Galileo navigation network, a civilian-run counterpart to the U.S. military's Global Positioning System. Liftoff from French Guiana is set for 1227:11 GMT (8:27:11 a.m. EDT).

   MISSION STATUS CENTER - live coverage!
   COUNTDOWN TIMELINE
   LAUNCH TIMELINE
Russian RD-180 rocket engines delivered to ULA
Dodging tit-for-tat sanctions that have paralyzed trade between the United States and Russia, a cargo plane landed in Alabama on Wednesday with two Russian-made RD-180 engines destined to power U.S. government spacecraft into orbit aboard Atlas 5 rockets.
   FULL STORY
Chinese, Polish satellites launched by Long March
A Chinese Earth-observing spacecraft and a Polish astronomical satellite launched into a nearly 400-mile-high orbit Tuesday aboard a Long March 4B rocket.
   FULL STORY
Spacewalkers deploy satellite, tend experiments
Space station cosmonauts Alexander Skvortsov and Oleg Artemyev staged a five-hour and 11-minute spacewalk outside the International Space Station Monday, launching a small Peruvian science satellite and changing out a variety of space exposure experiments.
   FULL STORY
   IMAGES: COSMONAUTS VENTURE OUTSIDE ISS
Astronauts see Cygnus re-entry over the South Pacific
Packed with trash and other equipment tagged for disposal, an Orbital Sciences Corp. Cygnus spacecraft plunged back into the atmosphere Sunday over the uninhabited Pacific Ocean, concluding a one-month mission to resupply the International Space Station.
   FULL STORY - with images!
Snapshots of last week's Atlas 5 rocket launch
Check out views of the Aug. 13 blastoff of a United Launch Alliance Atlas 5 rocket from California with WorldView 3, the most powerful commercial Earth-observing satellite ever launched.
   IMAGES: ULA'S REMOTE CAMERA SHOTS
   IMAGES: LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY
   IMAGES: LIFTOFF AS SEEN FROM PRESS SITE
   IMAGES: TUESDAY AT THE PAD
Rainfall research satellite begins descent from orbit
A long-lived satellite launched in 1997 to measure rainfall in the tropics has run out of fuel and will probably fall back to Earth within the next three years, NASA officials said this week.
   FULL STORY
Falcon 9 booster's 'soft landing' seen in new video
A video clip released by SpaceX on Thursday shows a fresh view of the descent and splashdown of a Falcon 9 rocket's booster stage following a July 14 launch to boost six Orbcomm communications satellites into space.
   FULL STORY - with video!
Cygnus cargo craft flies away from space station
Closing out a one-month stay at the International Space Station, a commercial Cygnus supply ship owned and operated by Orbital Sciences Corp. departed the huge orbiting complex Friday.
   FULL STORY
New commercial eye in the sky launched into space
An Atlas 5 rocket carrying the most powerful Earth-imaging satellite ever built for the commercial market blasted off from California and streaked into orbit Wednesday, the latest in a series of rapid-fire flights by rocket-builder United Launch Alliance.
   FULL STORY
   PREVIEW STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER
OCO 2 makes its first carbon measurement from space
A satellite launched last month has reached its operational perch 438 miles above Earth and started collecting data on the global distribution of carbon dioxide, a gas linked to climate change, NASA announced this week.
   FULL STORY
ULA announces new president and CEO
United Launch Alliance has named a new president and chief executive to replace Michael Gass, who led the Atlas and Delta rocket company since its inception in 2006.
   FULL STORY
Europe's cargo spacecraft makes final service call
Europe's Automated Transfer Vehicle made its final cargo delivery to the International Space Station on Tuesday, completing a smooth computer-controlled docking to resupply the orbiting laboratory with 7.3 tons of fuel, water, experiments and provisions.
   FULL STORY
   PREVIEW STORY
   IMAGES: ATV'S RENDEZVOUS WITH ISS
   MISSION STATUS CENTER
   DOCKING TIMELINE
Chinese surveillance satellites launched into orbit
A Long March 4C rocket launched three satellites into orbit Saturday on a clandestine mission that will likely serve Chinese intelligence and military organizations.
   FULL STORY
NASA's Pluto-bound probe sees its distant target
Heading toward a speedy encounter next summer, NASA's New Horizons spacecraft has glimpsed Pluto and its moon Charon in a cosmic orbital dance from a distance of more than 260 million miles.
   FULL STORY - with images!


United Launch Alliance highlights film of the Aug. 1 Atlas 5 rocket launch.

Rosetta's decade of flight
Rosetta's ten-year journey from the launch pad to comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko took the spacecraft by planets and asteroids, offering a preview of the probe's capabilities and whetting the appetites of researchers waiting for the mission's scientific payoff.
   IMAGES: ROSETTA'S SOLAR SYSTEM TOUR
Rosetta finally reaches comet destination
Europe's Rosetta spacecraft pulled alongside an oddball comet Wednesday, concluding a decade-long journey from Earth for the most comprehensive exploration of a comet in history.
   FULL STORY
   IMAGES: ROSETTA ARRIVES AT COMET
Falcon 9 rocket blasts off with AsiaSat satellite
A Falcon 9 launcher rocketed away from Cape Canaveral early Tuesday, boosting an AsiaSat telecommunications satellite into geostationary transfer orbit to beam television and data across China, India, Southeast Asia and the Middle East.
   FULL STORY
   PREVIEW STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER
   IMAGES: FALCON 9'S LIFTOFF
   IMAGES: LAUNCH PREPARATIONS
   COUNTDOWN TIMELINE
   LAUNCH EVENTS TIMELINE
   LAUNCH PRESS KIT - (.pdf download)
   FALCON ARCHIVE
Space shuttle relics ready to roar again in Mississippi
The space shuttle's hydrogen-fueled rocket engines will soon roar again after receiving upgrades to fly on the Space Launch System, a heavy-lifting mega-rocket NASA hopes will take astronauts on journeys farther than humans have ever traveled.
   FULL STORY
   IMAGES: INSIDE THE SLS ENGINE FACILITY
Sample cache, oxygen generator to fly to Mars
NASA's next Mars rover will identify, gather and store rock core samples for possible pickup by future robots or astronauts, continue the quest for evidence of past life, and likely employ redesigned wheels to avoid the dings and holes now afflicting the Curiosity rover on the red planet.
   FULL STORY
Atlas 5 rocket deploys new GPS navigation satellite
A rocket launch to serve the world blasted off Friday night from Florida carrying a new Global Positioning System satellite to transmit omnipresent navigation and timing information to users across the planet.
   FULL STORY
   PREVIEW STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER - live coverage!
   IMAGES: ROCKET ROLLOUT
   IMAGES: PAYLOAD PREPARATIONS
   LAUNCH EVENTS TIMELINE
   ATLAS ARCHIVE
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Rosetta's target comet too warm to be an icy world
Initial observations from an imaging spectrometer aboard Europe's Rosetta spacecraft show the comet it is chasing has a dark, dusty surface instead of one covered in ice, scientists said Friday.
   FULL STORY
Rosetta's camera seeing more of unexplored comet
On course for an historic rendezvous next week, the European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft is revealing new details of the oddball comet the probe has pursued for more than a decade.
   FULL STORY
Europe's last cargo freighter blasts off from Kourou
The last of Europe's automated cargo freighters blasted off from a South American spaceport Tuesday, soaring into orbit in pursuit of the International Space Station with 7.3 tons of fuel, food and supplies.
   FULL STORY
   PREVIEW STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER - live coverage!
   IMAGES: OFFICIAL ESA LAUNCH PHOTOS
   IMAGES: LAUNCH FROM TOUCAN VIEWING SITE
   IMAGES: ARIANE ARRIVES AT THE LAUNCH PAD
   LAUNCH TIMELINE
   FLIGHT GROUND TRACK
   ARIANE 5 DIAGRAM
   OUR ARIANE ARCHIVE


United Launch Alliance highlights film of Monday's Delta 4 rocket launch.

Space surveillance craft launched by Delta 4 rocket
A pair of covertly developed inspector satellites to monitor collision threats and nefarious activities in geosynchronous orbit for U.S. Strategic Command blasted off Monday aboard a Delta 4 rocket.
   FULL STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER - live updates!
   PREVIEW STORY
   IMAGES: SNAPSHOTS FROM LAUNCH
   IMAGES: LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY
   IMAGES: MONDAY'S RETRACT OF THE GANTRY
   IMAGES: SUNRISE OVER THE DELTA 4
   IMAGES: MOBILE GANTRY ROLLED BACK
   IMAGES: ROCKET REVEALED FOR LAUNCH
   LAUNCH EVENTS TIMELINE
   EARLIER STORY
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VIDEO: THE DELTA 4 ROCKET LIFTS OFF DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: LAUNCH AS SEEN FROM VIEWING SITE DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: MOBILE SERVICE GANTRY ROLLED BACK DOWNLOAD

Ground teams restore contact with orbiting geckos
A Russian ground team has made contact with a gecko-carrying scientific research satellite, restoring communications with the spacecraft after officials were unable to control it for a week, the Russian space agency announced Saturday.
   FULL STORY
NASA considers commercial telecom satellites at Mars
NASA may take the commercialization of the final frontier to other planets with a study that could lead to the construction of interplanetary communications satellites to relay data between Earth and future Mars rovers.
   FULL STORY
Extension granted for Spitzer infrared telescope
NASA officials said this week they plan to keep funding the Spitzer observatory for two more years, reversing a preliminary decision this spring to shut down the space-based infrared telescope due to budget concerns.
   FULL STORY
Officials unable to contact animal-carrying spaceship
A Russian space capsule carrying a package of biological and materials research specimens, including geckos and plant seeds, has stopped responding to commands from Earth, the Russian space agency announced Thursday.
   FULL STORY
Russian cargo carrier journeys to space station
A Russian Progress supply ship blasted off on top of a Soyuz rocket Wednesday and completed an expedited pursuit of the International Space Station with a smooth automated docking less than six hours later, delivering 5,700 pounds of food, fuel and supplies.
   FULL STORY
   PREVIEW STORY - with images!
Orbcomm pleased with SpaceX rocket performance
The six Orbcomm communications satellites launched last week are in good shape after an ultra-precise orbital delivery by a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, according to Orbcomm's chief executive.
   FULL STORY
Video shows Falcon 9's rocket-assisted splashdown
SpaceX released a video clip Tuesday showing the first stage of the Falcon 9 rocket descending back to Earth for a controlled, low-speed splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean northeast of Cape Canaveral following launch last week.
   FULL STORY - with video!
Neil Armstrong honored 45 years after moon landing
Apollo 11 moonwalker Buzz Aldrin, command module pilot Mike Collins and Apollo 13 commander Jim Lovell joined NASA dignitaries and Neil Armstrong's family Monday to rename the historic Operations and Checkout Building at the Kennedy Space Center in honor of the first man to walk on the moon.
   FULL STORY
   EARLIER STORY
   IMAGES: APOLLO 11 PHOTO FLASHBACK
Satellites crucial to collecting MH17 evidence
U.S. intelligence analysts turned to multibillion-dollar super-secret satellites in their quest to find answers to what happened to a Malaysian airliner over war-torn eastern Ukraine last week.
   FULL STORY
Payload set for launch aboard next Atlas 5 rocket
The next Global Positioning System satellite was mated atop its booster rocket today, marking a critical step towards the planned July 31 launch into space.
   FULL STORY
   LAUNCH EVENTS TIMELINE
European mission to space station postponed
The last flight of Europe's heavy-duty Automated Transfer Vehicle heading for the International Space Station will be delayed a few days while engineers resolve a problem with the spaceship's Ariane 5 launcher, officials said Friday.
   FULL STORY
Rendezvous of Cygnus chronicled in photos
Photos from the astronauts and cosmonauts living on the International Space Station show this week's special delivery of provisions, fresh food and experiments aboard a commercial Cygnus cargo craft.
   IMAGES: CYGNUS MAKES SPECIAL DELIVERY
Live animals launched on two-month space mission
A high-flying package of live animals, plant seeds, and materials samples shot into space Friday aboard a retrievable Russian Foton satellite, launching a two-month mission focusing on microgravity research into biological and physical sciences.
   FULL STORY
   IMAGES: VIDEO REPLAY AND LAUNCH PHOTOS
   IMAGES: SOYUZ ROLLS TO LAUNCH PAD
Rosetta sees surprising shape to spinning comet
Closing in to begin a thorough investigation in August, a camera on Europe's Rosetta comet-chasing probe has revealed its target has a few surprises in store for scientists.
   FULL STORY - with images!
Space planes, rocket launches on UK's wish list
The British government has announced plans to develop a spaceport, revealing candidate sites across the United Kingdom and fostering closer ties with the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to revamp regulations and lure space tourism, and potentially small satellite launches, to Britain.
   FULL STORY
Orbital Sciences cargo craft arrives at space station
A commercial Cygnus cargo craft completed a smooth laser-guided approach to the International Space Station on Wednesday, resupplying the 450-ton research complex and its six-person crew with food, experiments and other gear vital to keeping the orbiting laboratory operating.
   FULL STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER
   CARGO MANIFEST
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VIDEO: CYGNUS ARRIVES AT INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: HIGHLIGHTS FROM RENDEZVOUS DAY DOWNLOAD

VIDEO: ANTARES LAUNCHES WITH CYGNUS SPACECRAFT DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: SEE LAUNCH IN HIGH-DEFINITION VIDEO DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: REPLAYS FROM VARIOUS CAMERA ANGLES DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: POST-LAUNCH NEWS CONFERENCE DOWNLOAD

VIDEO: PRE-LAUNCH NEWS CONFERENCE DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: CYGNUS CLOSED OUT FOR FLIGHT DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: ANTARES ROCKET ROLLS OUT DOWNLOAD
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A tribute was paid to the late astronaut Janice Voss on Wednesday as the Cygnus cargo craft carrying her name arrived at the International Space Station.

ESA inks deal to stimulate ship-tracking industry
The European Space Agency signed a $41 million contract with a startup Luxembourg-based spacecraft manufacturer for two microsatellites Tuesday, launching a public-private partnership to expand maritime coverage for security, safety and environmental purposes.
   FULL STORY
SpaceX launch delivers Orbcomm satellites to orbit
SpaceX launched a Falcon 9 rocket with six compact communications spacecraft Monday, marking a fiery first act in realizing a $230 million investment to modernize an orbital fleet owned by Orbcomm Inc., a New Jersey-based company that connects businesses with remote equipment via satellite.
   FULL STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER
   IMAGES: SPACEX PHOTO GALLERY
   IMAGES: LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY
   IMAGES: SUNDAY AFTERNOON AT PAD
   PREVIEW STORY
   COUNTDOWN TIMELINE
   LAUNCH TIMELINE
   INFO SHEET: OVERVIEW OF OG2 SATELLITES
   OUR FALCON ARCHIVE
Space station-bound supply ship launched from Virginia
A fresh load of supplies and research experiments began a three-day journey to the International Space Station on Sunday after a successful midday launch aboard an Antares rocket from Virginia's Eastern Shore.
   FULL STORY
   IMAGES: ORBITAL PHOTO GALLERY
   IMAGES: LAUNCH DAY SNAPSHOTS
   IMAGES: ANTARES ROLLOUT
   PREVIEW STORY
   COUNTDOWN TIMELINE
   LAUNCH TIMELINE
   LAUNCH VISIBILITY MAP
Debut flight of Russia's Angara rocket in imagery
Russia's new Angara launcher took off on its first test flight Wednesday, and officials said the rocket performed as expected on a 21-minute suborbital mission departing from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome about 500 miles north of Moscow. Relive the launch with video and photos released by Roscosmos and the Russian Defense Ministry.
   IMAGES: VIDEO AND PHOTOS OF LAUNCH
Payload mated for launch aboard next Delta 4 rocket
Two spacecraft that will track man-made objects and deter threats in geosynchronous orbit were hauled to the launch pad today and mounted atop a United Launch Alliance Delta 4 booster rocket.
   FULL STORY
Satellites launched to beam Internet down to Earth
Four broadband communications satellites for O3b Networks, a company based in Britain's Channel Islands with a mission to link developing countries via high-speed Internet, blasted off from French Guiana on top of a Russian Soyuz rocket Thursday.
   FULL STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER
   IMAGES: HARDWARE READIED FOR LAUNCH
   COUNTDOWN TIMELINE
   LAUNCH TIMELINE
   ARIANESPACE LAUNCH KIT - (.pdf download)
   OUR ARCHIVE OF SOYUZ IN FRENCH GUIANA
ULA to outfit pad for crews, pending NASA decision
United Launch Alliance has completed the design of a modified Atlas 5 launch pad to accommodate astronaut flights at Cape Canaveral, and construction workers will start installing the upgrades this fall if one of ULA's partners wins NASA funding in the commercial crew program.
   FULL STORY
2014: A mid-year look at Atlas and Delta performance
It has been a hectic first six months of the year for the Atlas and Delta families of rockets, flying a combined 7 times so far in 2014. Here is a look at the year to date for United Launch Alliance and the four Atlas missions and three by Delta.
   FULL STORY
Angara rocket launched on suborbital test flight
Russia's new Angara launcher lifted off on its first test flight Wednesday, inaugurating the country's first all-new rocket program in decades in a bid to end Russia's reliance on other nations and toxic fuels for access to space.
   FULL STORY
Soyuz rocket sends up Russian weather satellite
A new Russian weather satellite lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Tuesday, riding a Soyuz launcher into space with six small piggyback satellites from Britain, the United States and Norway.
   FULL STORY
   IMAGES: LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY
The final shuttle launch
"On the shoulders of the space shuttle, America will continue the dream." Three years ago Tuesday, the shuttle Atlantis thundered into history on the 135th and final launch of America's Space Transportation System after 31 years of service. Relive launch day in this photo collection.
   SPECIAL PHOTO GALLERY
   OUR LAUNCH STORY
   ARCHIVE MISSION STATUS CENTER
   VIDEO: FINAL MISSION ARCHIVE
   HDTV: HIGH-DEFINITION VIDEO
Prime real estate renamed in honor of Armstrong
A famed facility at the Kennedy Space Center where Apollo spacecraft were readied for the moon and NASA's next-generation Orion capsules are being built to go into deep space is being renamed for the first moonwalker, the late Neil Armstrong.
   FULL STORY
Enthusiasm wanes for fast start to U.S. engine program
With the Obama administration, NASA and industry leaders preaching caution -- and no sign Russian rocket engine exports will end -- the rush to replace the Russian RD-180 engine used to power billions of dollars of U.S. military and scientific research satellites into space has cooled in recent weeks.
   FULL STORY
Rosetta mission one month from historic comet arrival
The European Space Agency's Rosetta spacecraft is one month from pulling alongside an icy comet and beginning the most comprehensive survey of a comet yet attempted.
   FULL STORY
The joys of launch
A heavy blanket of fog and a persistent drizzle couldn't dampen the joy surrounding this week's Delta 2 rocket launch that saw the return of a venerable booster and a comeback for the science team.
   FULL STORY
   IMAGES: LAUNCH PHOTO GALLERY
Spaceflight Now Plus
Additional coverage for subscribers:
VIDEO: DELTA 2 LAUNCHES OCO 2 DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: ONBOARD CAMERA VIEW OF SEPARATION DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: A SUCCESSFUL LAUNCH DECLARED DOWNLOAD
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Russian communications satellites rocket into orbit
Russia put three message relay spacecraft into orbit Thursday aboard a Rockot launcher, continuing the deployment of a fleet of civil communications satellites for the Russian government.
   FULL STORY
Government argues for dismissal of SpaceX lawsuit
The U.S. government has filed a motion with the Court of Federal Claims to dismiss a key element in a lawsuit by SpaceX challenging a sole-source multi-rocket contract awarded to United Launch Alliance last December.
   FULL STORY


United Launch Alliance presents a stirring hightlights video from the Delta 2 rocket carrying the OCO 2 spacecraft.

Workhorse Delta 2 returns to launch NASA observatory
Streaking back into action after a two-and-a-half-year hiatus, a Delta 2 rocket launched NASA's Orbiting Carbon Observatory No. 2 on Wednesday to watch the Earth breathe from space.
   FULL STORY
   MISSION STATUS CENTER - live coverage!
   IMAGES: NASA PHOTO GALLERY
   IMAGES: THE DELTA 2 ROCKET
   IMAGES: MOBILE GANTRY ROLLBACK
   IMAGES: PRE-LAUNCH GALLERY
   IMAGES: DELTA STACKING GALLERY
   PREVIEW STORY
   RETURN OF DELTA 2
   EARLIER STORY
   OUR DELTA ARCHIVE
Spaceflight Now Plus
Additional coverage for subscribers:
VIDEO: DELTA 2 LAUNCHES OCO 2 DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: ONBOARD CAMERA VIEW OF SEPARATION DOWNLOAD

VIDEO: FIRST LAUNCH ATTEMPT SCRUBBED DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: NARRATED REVIEW OF OCO 2 FLOW DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: NARRATED REVIEW OF DELTA 2 FLOW DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: ROLLBACK OF MOBILE SERVICE TOWER DOWNLOAD

VIDEO: WATCH THE DELTA 2/OCO 2 PRE-LAUNCH BRIEFING DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: NARRATED PREVIEW OF THE DELTA 2/OCO 2 FLIGHT DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: WATCH THE OCO 2 SCIENCE PRE-LAUNCH BRIEFING DOWNLOAD

VIDEO: OCO 2 MISSION SOUNDBITES DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: INTRODUCTION TO THE OCO 2 MISSION DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: A LOOK AT THE CARBON DIOXIDE SCIENCE DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: OVERVIEW OF THE OCO 2 PROJECT DOWNLOAD
VIDEO: OCO 2 PRE-FLIGHT BRIEFING DOWNLOAD
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Apollo Collage
This beautiful one piece set features the Apollo program emblem surrounded by the individual mission logos.
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John Glenn Mission Patch

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The historic first orbital flight by an American is marked by this commemorative patch for John Glenn and Friendship 7.
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Final Shuttle Mission Patch

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The crew emblem for the final space shuttle mission is available in our store. Get this piece of history!
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Celebrate the shuttle program

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This special commemorative patch marks the retirement of NASA's Space Shuttle Program. Available in our store!
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Anniversary Shuttle Patch

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This embroidered patch commemorates the 30th anniversary of the Space Shuttle Program. The design features the space shuttle Columbia's historic maiden flight of April 12, 1981.
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Mercury anniversary

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Celebrate the 50th anniversary of Alan Shephard's historic Mercury mission with this collectors' item, the official commemorative embroidered patch.
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Fallen Heroes Patch Collection
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Apollo Collage
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