Premium video content for our Spaceflight Now Plus subscribers.
STS-51B: Monkeys, bubbles and auroras
The flight of Spacelab 3 aboard Challenger in April/May 1985 was a week-long scientific research mission using a laboratory tucked in the shuttle's payload bay. Experiments focused on material and fluid behaviors in weightlessness, plus observations of monkeys in the lab. The crew also watched amazing auroral displays over Earth. This post-flight crew film shows the highlights of STS-51B and includes remarkable views out the shuttle cockpit window during launch showing the Chesapeake Bay, New York City and Cape Cod as Challenger soared up the eastern seaboard.
STS-51D: Flyswatter spacewalk
Discovery launched April 12, 1985 on the STS-51D mission. A U.S. military communications satellite, known as Leasat 3, failed to activate after its deployment from the payload bay. That set the stage for a spacewalk -- the shuttle program's first unplanned EVA -- to attach handcrafted "Flyswatter" objects on the shuttle robotic arm to hit a timing switch on the satellite. The rescue attempt did not succeed. Upon landing at Kennedy Space Center, Discovery blew a tire. The crew, including Senator Jake Garn of Utah, narrate this post-flight film of highlights from the week-long mission.
Fuel tank update
NASA managers hold this news conference April 28 to give an update on plans for the next space shuttle mission, the ongoing external fuel tank testing and debates over further modifications.
Tank meets SRBs
Inside the Vehicle Assembly Building, the external fuel tank for the STS-121 space shuttle mission is hoisted into position for attachment with the twin solid rocket boosters atop a mobile launch platform. The tank, ET-119, will carry the liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen to feed Discovery's three main engines during launch.
Discovery departs hangar SPACEFLIGHT NOW Posted: May 12, 2006
This collection of photos shows space shuttle Discovery's milestone move on May 12 from its processing hangar to the Vehicle Assembly Building for mating to the external fuel tank and solid rocket boosters. Photo credit: NASA-KSC
Additional coverage for subscribers: VIDEO:
SHUTTLE DISCOVERY BACKS OUT OF HANGAR PLAY VIDEO:
WALK ALONGSIDE THE SHUTTLE DURING THE MOVE PLAY VIDEO:
DISCOVERY PULLS INTO VEHICLE ASSEMBLY BUILDING PLAY VIDEO:
TIME-LAPSE MOVIE OF DEPARTURE FROM THE HANGAR PLAY VIDEO:
TIME-LAPSE MOVIE OF ARRIVAL INSIDE THE VAB PLAY
EXTERNAL TANK OPENED FOR SENSOR REPLACEMENT PLAY VIDEO:
EXTERNAL TANK HOISTED OUT OF CHECKOUT BAY PLAY VIDEO:
FOAM REAPPLIED TO EXTERNAL TANK ACCESS PORT PLAY VIDEO:
EXTERNAL TANK MATED TO SOLID ROCKET BOOSTERS PLAY VIDEO:
PAYLOAD BAY DOORS CLOSED FOR HANGAR DEPARTURE PLAY MORE:STS-121 VIDEO COVERAGE SUBSCRIBE NOW