STS-95 launches from Kennedy Space Center, 29 October 1998
|Mission type||Bioscience research
|Mission duration||8 days, 19 hours, 54 minutes, 2 seconds[dubious ]|
|Distance travelled||5,800,000 kilometres (3,600,000 mi)|
|Spacecraft||Space Shuttle Discovery|
|Landing mass||103,322 kilograms (227,790 lb)|
|Payload mass||11,130 kilograms (24,500 lb)|
|Members||Curtis L. Brown, Jr.
Steven W. Lindsey
Scott E. Parazynski
Stephen K. Robinson
John H. Glenn, Jr.
|Start of mission|
|Launch date||29 October 1998, 19:19:34UTC|
|Launch site||Kennedy LC-39B|
|End of mission|
|Landing date||7 November 1998, 17:04dubious ]UTC[|
|Landing site||Kennedy SLF Runway 33.|
|Perigee||550 kilometres (340 mi)|
|Apogee||561 kilometres (349 mi)|
STS-95 was a Space Shuttle Discovery mission launched from Kennedy Space Center, Florida on 29 October 1998. It was the 25th flight of Discovery and the 92nd mission flown since the start of the Space Shuttle program in April 1981. It was a highly publicized mission due to former Project Mercury astronaut and United States Senator John H. Glenn, Jr.'s return to space for his second space flight. At age 77, Glenn became the oldest person, to date, to go into space. This mission is also noted for inaugurating ATSC HDTV broadcasting in the U.S., with live coast-to-coast coverage of the launch. In another first, Spain's Pedro Duque became the first Spaniard in space.
The mission's objectives involved investigating life-sciences experiments, using the SpaceHab to perform these experiments on Senator Glenn. Scientific objectives on this mission were not limited to furthering an understanding of the human body, but also to increase astronomical understanding with regards to the Sun, and how it affects life on Earth. The Spartan 201 spacecraft was released by the crew, flying free from the Shuttle, studying the acceleration of the solar wind that originates in the sun's solar corona. The mission lasted just under nine days, with Discovery completing its voyage by landing at Kennedy Space Center's Shuttle Landing Facility.
The launch was rare in that the official launch weather forecast provided by the 45th Weather Squadron was 100 percent for favorable weather for launch as well as the Shuttle landing facility at Kennedy Space Center.
Bill Clinton became the second incumbent US president to witness a rocket launch, joined by his wife Hillary on the roof of the Vehicle Assembly Building; and the only one to attend a Shuttle launch (President Richard Nixon witnessed the launch of Apollo 12).
|Commander||Curtis L. Brown, Jr.
|Pilot||Steven W. Lindsey
|Mission Specialist 1||Pedro Duque, ESA
|Mission Specialist 2||Scott E. Parazynski
|Payload Commander||Stephen K. Robinson
|Payload Specialist 1||Chiaki Mukai, NASDA
|Payload Specialist 2||John H. Glenn, Jr.
The primary objectives included conducting a variety of science experiments in the pressurized Spacehab module, the deployment and retrieval of the Spartan free-flyer payload, and operations with the HST Orbital Systems Test (HOST) and the International Extreme Ultraviolet Hitchhiker (IEH) payloads carried in the payload bay.
The Spacehab module flown on STS-95 was provided by Spacehab, Inc., a private company which provides single- or double-module Spacehabs to support NASA's space flight efforts. The Spacehab system provides additional pressurized workspace for experiments, cargo and crew activities. Spacehab modules have supported various Shuttle science missions along with several of the joint Shuttle-Mir missions.
For STS-95, a single-module Spacehab flew in the forward portion of Discovery's payload bay with the crew gaining access to the module through the airlock tunnel system. A variety of experiments sponsored by NASA, the Japanese Space Agency (NASDA) and the European Space Agency (ESA) focused on life sciences, microgravity sciences and advanced technology during the flight.
The Spartan 201-5 free-flyer was deployed and retrieved using the Shuttle's mechanical arm. It was designed to investigate physical conditions and processes of the hot outer layers of the Sun's atmosphere, or solar corona. While deployed from the Shuttle, Spartan gathered measurements of the solar corona and solar wind. Information collected during this mission will lead to a much better understanding of the solar winds that directly influence orbiting satellites and weather conditions on Earth which in turn impact television and phone communications. This was the fifth flight for the Spartan payload, it originally flew on the STS-56 mission, in April 1993. On its previous mission, on STS-87 in November 1997, Spartan developed problems shortly after being deployed from the Shuttle and had to be brought back into the Shuttle's cargo bay. These problems were due to human error, and Spartan was cleared for use again on STS-95. Its mission was to successfully perform the same experiments from the previous year.
The Hubble Space Telescope Orbital Systems Test (HOST) platform carried experiments to validate components planned for installation during the third Hubble Space Telescope servicing mission and to evaluate new technologies in an earth orbiting environment. There were four experiments on the HOST platform. The NICMOS Cooling System allowed zero-g verification of a Reverse Turbo Brayton Cycle Cooler which allows longer life operation than the current dewar system. (2) The HST 486 Computer allows the identification of any radiation susceptible parts in the DF-224 replacement and demonstrate hardware and software responses to Single Event Upsets (SEU's). (3) Solid State Recorder compares on-orbit operation of the flight spare solid state recorder with the current HST unit. (4) Fiber Optic Line Test uses the same 4 kbit/s data stream that is sent to the orbiter's Payload Data Interrogator (PDI) and is routed to a laptop computer for post-flight comparison.
The International Extreme Ultraviolet Hitchhiker (IEH) payload involves a half dozen different experiments mounted on a support structure which was carried in Discovery's payload bay. The six experiments that make up the IEH payload are (1) Solar Extreme Ultraviolet Hitchhiker (SEH) payload which obtained EUV and FUV fluxes that are required when studying the Earth's upper atmosphere; (2) Ultraviolet Spectrograph Telescope for Astronomical Research (UVSTAR) payload designed to measure EUV fluxes which can be used to form images of extended plasma sources (ex. Jupiter, hot stars, etc.); (3) STAR-LITE payload which made observations of extended and diffused astrophysical targets; (4) CONCAP-IV payload designed to grow thin films via physical vapor transport; (5) Petite Amateur Navy Satellite (PANSAT) payload which is managed by the Department of Defense Space Test Program and involves a small deployable satellite that stores and transmits digital communications to PANSAT ground stations; and (6) a Getaway Special (GAS) payload.
Since the aging process and a space flight experience share a number of similar physiological responses, a series of experiments sponsored by NASA and the National Institute on Aging was conducted on Glenn during the STS-95 mission. The investigations gathered information which may provide a model system to help scientists interested in understanding aging. Some of these similarities include bone and muscle loss, balance disorders and sleep disturbances. Data provided from Glenn during this mission was compared to data obtained from Glenn's Friendship 7 orbital mission in 1962.
In addition to becoming the oldest person to fly into space, Glenn also became the third politician to fly in space. He was preceded by Senator Jake Garn (STS-51-D) and then-Representative (now Senator) Bill Nelson (STS-61-C). At the time, Glenn was Ohio's senior or ranking Senator.
In a reprise of his first space flight, while in orbit, Glenn was greeted again by the citizens of Perth and Rockingham in Australia. They left their private and municipal lights on while the Discovery passed overhead, just like they did during his Friendship 7 flight.
The crew of Space Shuttle Mission STS-95 was awarded the Space Foundation's Douglas S. Morrow Public Outreach Award in 1999. The award is given annually to an individual or organization that has made significant contributions to public awareness of space programs.
The drag chute door detached and fell from the orbiter at main engine ignition. There was some concern that the drag chute could deploy prematurely prior to touchdown. The decision was made not to use the chute during landing rollout. Wheel brakes and speedbrakes were sufficient to bring Discovery to a stop on KSC SLF runway 33.
An RCS leak venting from a thruster on LHS OMS pod was observed in orbit. An isolation valve was used to disable the jet. Attitude control was maintained by system redundancy. There are 44 RCS jets.
Inaugural HDTV broadcast
The American Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) HDTV system had its public launch during the live coverage of the lift-off. The signal was transmitted coast-to-coast, and was seen by the public in science centers, and other public theaters specially equipped to receive and display the broadcast. The broadcast was made possible by the Harris Corporation, which sponsored the equipment necessary for transmitting and receiving the broadcast. The broadcast was hosted by former CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite, and former Gemini/Apollo era astronaut Pete Conrad.
NASA began a tradition of playing music to astronauts during the Gemini program, which was first used to wake up a flight crew during Apollo 15. Each track is specially chosen and often has a particular meaning to an individual member of the crew, or it is somehow applicable to their situation.
- Day 2: "What a Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong played for Mission Specialist Scott Parazynski. WAV
- Day 3: "Cachito" by Nat King Cole played for Mission Specialist Pedro Duque.WAV
- Day 4: "This Pretty Planet" by Tom Chapin and/or "Halelujahs" by Chris Rice played for Pilot Steven Lindsey. WAV
- Day 5: "Moon River" by Andy Williams played for Payload Specialist John Glenn WAV
- Day 6: "The House is Rockin'" by Stevie Ray Vaughan played for Mission Specialist Steve Robinson. WAV
- Day 7: "Wakaki Chi" (Young Spirit) (Keio University "cheering song") played for Payload Specialist Chiaki Mukai. WAV
- Day 8: "I Know You're Out There Somewhere" by The Moody Blues played for Commander Curtis Brown. WAV[dead link]
- Day 9: "Voyage Into Space" by Peter Nero played for Payload Specialist John Glenn WAV
- Day 10: "La Cucaracha" played for Mission Specialist Pedro Duque. WAV
The STS-95 mission insignia was designed by the crew, and evokes the scientific, engineering and historic elements of the flight. It depicts a stylized blue Space Shuttle with yellow, red, and blue streamers coming from its stern that represent the global benefits of the mission's science experiments and the solar science objectives of the Spartan Satellite. A small Mercury space capsule is depicted orbiting the shuttle, and the red streamer extends up towards the center of the shuttle to form a "7". The capsule and the number seven are in reference to Glenn's historic association with the Mercury Seven astronauts and their spacecraft: all of the manned Mercury spacecraft had "7" as part of their name. The mission payloads—microgravity material science, medical research for humans on Earth and in space, and astronomy—represent three major scientific fields and are symbolized in the insignia by rocket plumes.
- Space science
- Space shuttle
- List of space shuttle missions
- List of human spaceflights chronologically
- John H. Glenn, Jr.
- Mercury-Atlas 6
- "Shuttle Missions: STS-95". Mission Archives. NASA. Retrieved 29 October 2008.
- "Forecast improves to 100 percent 'go' for Shuttle launch". CBS News. 28 October 1998. Retrieved 31 August 2009.
- "Sts-95 science spans inner universe to outer space". Shuttle Press Kit: STS-95. National Aeronautics and Space Administration. 1998. Retrieved 24 October 2008.
- "Spartan 201-05 to Fly on STS-95" (Press release). National Aeronautics and Space Administration. 1998. Retrieved 25 October 2008.
- "John Glenn flying high". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. 30 October 1998. Retrieved 25 October 2008.
- "John Glenn greets Perth". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. 30 October 1998. Retrieved 24 October 2008.
- [dead link]
- Albiniak, Paige (2 November 1998). "HDTV: Launched and Counting.". Broadcasting and cable (BNET). Retrieved 24 October 2008.[dead link]
- "Space Shuttle Discovery: John Glenn Launch". Internet Movie Database. 1998. Retrieved 25 October 2008.
- Fries, Colin (25 June 2007). "Chronology of Wakeup Calls" (PDF). NASA. Retrieved 13 August 2007.
- Fries, Colin. "Chronology of Wakeup calls". NASA. p. 62.
- "The Symbolism of a Patch". Space.com. 16 July 1999. Retrieved 25 October 2008.[dead link]