Launch of Columbia
|Mission type||Microgravity research|
|Mission duration||15 days, 22 hours, 20 minutes, 32 seconds|
|Distance travelled||10,600,000 kilometres (6,600,000 mi)|
|Spacecraft||Space Shuttle Columbia|
|Launch mass||119,615 kilograms (263,710 lb)|
|Landing mass||105,593 kilograms (232,790 lb) (expected)|
|Payload mass||14,553 kilograms (32,080 lb)|
|Members||Rick D. Husband
William C. McCool
David M. Brown
Michael P. Anderson
Laurel B. Clark
|Start of mission|
|Launch date||16 January 2003 15:39:00UTC|
|Launch site||Kennedy LC-39A|
|End of mission|
|Decay date||1 February 2003, 13:59:32
Disintegrated during reentry
|Landing site||Kennedy SLF Runway 33 (planned)|
|Perigee||270 kilometres (170 mi)|
|Apogee||285 kilometres (177 mi)|
Rear (L-R): David Brown, Laurel Clark, Michael Anderson, Ilan Ramon;
STS-107 was the 113th flight of the Space Shuttle program, and the final flight of Space Shuttle Columbia. The mission launched from Kennedy Space Center on 16 January 2003, and during its 16 days in orbit conducted a multitude of international scientific investigations.
The seven-member crew died on 1 February 2003 when the Columbia orbiter disintegrated during reentry into the Earth's atmosphere. The Columbia Accident Investigation Board determined the failure was caused by a piece of foam that broke off during launch and damaged the thermal protection system components (reinforced carbon-carbon panels and thermal protection tiles) on the leading edge of the left wing of the orbiter. During re-entry the damaged wing slowly overheated and came apart, eventually leading to loss of control and disintegration of the vehicle.
Mission highlights 
|This section requires expansion. (March 2010)|
STS-107 carried the SPACEHAB Double Research Module on its inaugural flight, the Freestar experiment (mounted on a Hitchhiker Program rack), and the Extended Duration Orbiter pallet. SPACEHAB was first flown on STS 57.
On board the Columbia was a copy of a drawing by Petr Ginz, the editor-in-chief of the magazine Vedem, who depicted what he imagined the Earth looked like from the Moon when he was a 14-year-old prisoner in the Terezín concentration camp. The copy was in the possession of Ilan Ramon and was lost in the crash. Ilan Ramon also travelled with a dollar bill received from the Lubavitcher Rebbe.
An Australian experiment, conducted by students from Glen Waverley Secondary College, was designed to test the reaction of zero gravity on the web formation of the Garden Orb Spider.
|Commander||Rick D. Husband
|Pilot||William C. McCool
|Mission Specialist 1||David M. Brown
|Mission Specialist 2||Kalpana Chawla
|Payload Commander||Michael P. Anderson
|Mission Specialist 4||Laurel B. Clark
|Payload Specialist 1||Ilan Ramon
The central element of the patch is the microgravity symbol, µg, flowing into the rays of the astronaut symbol.
The mission inclination is portrayed by the 39 degree angle of the astronaut symbol to the Earth's horizon. The sunrise is representative of the numerous experiments that are the dawn of a new era for continued microgravity research on the International Space Station and beyond. The breadth of science and the exploration of space is illustrated by the Earth and stars. The constellation Columba (the dove) was chosen to symbolize peace on Earth and the Space Shuttle Columbia. The seven stars also represent the mission crew members and honor the original astronauts who paved the way to make research in space possible. Six stars have five points, the seventh has six points like a Star of David, symbolizing the Israeli Space Agency's contributions to the mission.
An Israeli flag is adjacent to the name of Payload Specialist Ramon, who was the first Israeli in space. The crew insignia or 'patch' design was initiated by crew members Dr. Laurel Clark and Dr. Kalpana Chawla. First-time crew member Clark provided most of the design concepts as Chawla led the design of her maiden voyage STS-87 insignia. Clark also pointed out that the dove in the Columba constellation was mythologically connected to the explorers 'The Argonauts' who released the dove.
See also 
- William H. Starbuck, Moshe Farjoun (Eds.): Organization at the Limit: Lessons from the Columbia Disaster. Blackwell, Malden 2005, ISBN 140513108X.
- "HSF - STS-107 Science". NASA. 2003-05-30. Retrieved 2012-09-02.
- "Columbia crew saw new atmospheric phenomenon". Newscientist.com. Retrieved 10 December 2010.
- "Israeli astronaut busy up in space". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Retrieved 22 May 2011.
- "Australian space spiders perish". smh.com.au. 2003-02-02. Retrieved 2012-09-02.
- "Space Shuttle – STS-107". Spacepatches.nl. 16 January 2003. Retrieved 10 December 2010.
- "Constellation Columba". coldwater.k12.mi.us. Retrieved 2 September 2012.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: STS-107|
- NASA's Space Shuttle Columbia & Her Crew
- NASA STS-107 Crew Memorial web page
- NASA's STS-107 Space Research Web Site
- Spaceflight Now: STS-107 Mission Report
- Science Reports
- Press Kit
- Article describing experiments which survived the disaster
- Article: Astronaut Laurel Clark from Racine, WI
- Status reports Detailed NASA status reports for each day of the mission.
- Raw Video Reconstruction of Re-entry, Tribute Videos, and More