STS-50 (48)

COLUMBIA (12)
Pad 39-A (46)
48th Shuttle mission
12th Flight of OV-102
KSC Landing (10)

Crew:

Richard N. Richards (3), Commander
Kenneth D. Bowersox (1), Pilot
Bonnie J. Dunbar (3), Payload Commander
Ellen S. Baker (2), Mission Specialist 2
Carl J. Meade (2), Mission Specialist 3
Lawrence J. DeLucas (1), Payload Specialist 1
Eugene H. Trinh (1), Payload Specialist 2

Milestones:

OPF-3 - 2/10/92
VAB - 5/29/92
PAD - 6/3/92

Payload:

USML-01, IPMP,SAREX-II,UVPI

Mission Objectives:

Launch:

June 25, 1992, 12:12:23 p.m. EDT. Launch delayed 5 minutes due to weather concerns. Launch Weight: 257,265 lbs.

Orbit:

Altitude: 160nm
Inclination: 28.45 degrees
Orbits: 221
Duration: 13 days, 19 hours, 3O minutes, O4 seconds.
Distance: 5,758,000 miles

Hardware:

SRB: BI-051
SRM: 360L/M024
ET : 45/LWT-38
MLP : 3
SSME-1: SN-2019
SSME-2: SN-2031
SSME-3: SN-2011

Landing:

July 9, 1992, 7:43 a.m. EDT, Runway 33, Kennedy Space Center. Fla., Rollout distance: 1O,2OO feet. Rollout time: 59 seconds. Drag chute used. Landing diverted to KSC because of bad weather at the primary landing site at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Marked 1Oth Space Shuttle landing at KSC and first for the orbiter COLUMBIA. Mission duration eclipsed all previous U.S. manned space flights except the three flights to the Skylab Space Station in 1973 and 1974. Landing Weight: 228,127 lbs.

Mission Highlights:

Primary payload was the United States Microgravity Laboratory-I (USML-1), a manned Spacelab module with connecting tunnel to the orbiter crew compartment. USML-l was a national effort to advance microgravity research in a broad number of disciplines. The 13-day mission, the first Extended Duration Orbiter flight and the longest Space Shuttle mission to date, also provided new information on the effects of long-term human stay in space. Experiments conducted were: Crystal Growth Furnace (CGF), Drop Physics Module (DPM), Surface Tension Driven Convection Experiment (STDCE), Zeolite Crystal Growth (ZCG), Protein Crystal Growth (PCG), Glovebox Facility (GBX), Space Acceleration Measurement System (SAMS), Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (GBA), Astroculture-1 (ASC), Extended Duration Orbiter Medical Project (EDOMP), and Solid Surface Combustion Experiment (SSCE).

Secondary experiments included Investigation in Polymer Membrane Processing (IPMP), Shuttle amateur Radio Experiment II (SAREX-II), and Ultraviolet Plume Instrument (UVPI).

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