Space Shuttle Endeavour

Last updated

STS-123 Dextre&Kibo ELM-PS in orbit (cropped).jpg
Endeavour in orbit in 2008, during STS-123
Type Spaceplane
Class Space Shuttle orbiter
Eponym HMS Endeavour
Serial no.OV-105
Owner NASA
Manufacturer Rockwell International
Dry mass78,000 kilograms (172,000 lb)
Rocket Space Shuttle
First flight
Last flight
Flight time7,179 hours
Travelled197,761,262 kilometres (122,883,151 mi) around Earth
Orbits4,671 around Earth
Fate Retired
Space Shuttle orbiters

Space Shuttle Endeavour (Orbiter Vehicle Designation: OV-105) is a retired orbiter from NASA's Space Shuttle program and the fifth and final operational Shuttle built. It embarked on its first mission, STS-49, in May 1992 and its 25th and final mission, STS-134, in May 2011. [1] [2] [3] STS-134 was expected to be the final mission of the Space Shuttle program, [4] but with the authorization of STS-135 by the United States Congress, Atlantis became the last shuttle to fly.


The United States Congress approved the construction of Endeavour in 1987 to replace the Space Shuttle Challenger, which was destroyed in 1986.

NASA chose, on cost grounds, to build much of Endeavour from spare parts rather than refitting the Space Shuttle Enterprise, and used structural spares built during the construction of Discovery and Atlantis in its assembly.

The space shuttle will soon be on display in the upcoming Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center at the California Science Center.


Endeavour rollout ceremony in April 1991 Endeavour rollout ceremony.jpg
Endeavour rollout ceremony in April 1991
Endeavour as photographed from the International Space Station as it approached the station during STS-118 STS-118 approaching ISS.jpg
Endeavour as photographed from the International Space Station as it approached the station during STS-118
Endeavour appears to straddle the stratosphere and mesosphere in this 2010 photo taken from the International Space Station Endeavour silhouette STS-130.jpg
Endeavour appears to straddle the stratosphere and mesosphere in this 2010 photo taken from the International Space Station

Following the loss of Challenger, in 1986 NASA was authorized to begin the procurement process for a replacement orbiter. A major refit of the prototype orbiter Enterprise was looked at and rejected on cost grounds, with instead the cache of structural spares that were produced as part of the construction of Discovery and Atlantis earmarked for assembly into the new orbiter. Assembly was completed in July 1990, and the new orbiter was rolled out in April 1991. As part of the process, NASA ran a national competition for schools to name the new orbiter—the criteria included a requirement that it be named after an exploratory or research vessel, with a name "easily understood in the context of space"; entries included an essay about the name, the story behind it and why it was appropriate for a NASA shuttle, and the project that supported the name. Amongst the entries, Endeavour was suggested by one-third of the participating schools, with President George H.W. Bush eventually selecting it on the advice of the NASA Administrator, Richard Truly. The national winners were Senatobia Middle School in Senatobia, Mississippi, in the elementary division and Tallulah Falls School in Tallulah Falls, Georgia, in the upper school division. They were honored at several ceremonies in Washington, D.C., including a White House ceremony where President Bush presented awards to each school. [5] Endeavour was delivered by Rockwell International Space Transportation Systems Division in May 1991 and first launched a year later, in May 1992, on STS-49.

The orbiter is named after the British HMS Endeavour, the ship which took Captain James Cook on his first voyage of discovery (1768–1771). [6] This is why the name is spelled in the British English manner, rather than the American English ("Endeavor"). This has caused confusion, including when NASA itself misspelled a sign on the launch pad in 2007. [7] The Space Shuttle carried a piece of the original wood from Cook's ship inside the cockpit. [8] The name also honored Endeavour, the command module of Apollo 15, which was also named for Cook's ship.

On May 30, 2020, Dragon 2 capsule C206 was named Endeavour during the Crew Dragon Demo-2 mission by astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken in honor of the shuttle, on which both astronauts took their first flights (STS-127 and STS-123 respectively).


On its first mission, it captured and redeployed the stranded INTELSAT VI communications satellite. The first African-American woman astronaut, Mae Jemison, was launched into space on the mission STS-47 on September 12, 1992.

Endeavour flew the first servicing mission STS-61 for the Hubble Space Telescope in 1993. In 1997 it was withdrawn from service for eight months for a retrofit, including installation of a new airlock. In December 1998, it delivered the Unity Module to the International Space Station.

Endeavour's last Orbiter Major Modification period began in December 2003 and ended on October 6, 2005. During this time, Endeavour received major hardware upgrades, including a new, multi-functional, electronic display system, often referred to as a glass cockpit, and an advanced GPS receiver, along with safety upgrades recommended by the Columbia Accident Investigation Board (CAIB) for the shuttle's return to flight following the loss of Columbia during reentry on February 1, 2003.

The STS-118 mission, Endeavour's first since the refit, included astronaut Barbara Morgan, formerly assigned to the Teacher in Space project, and later a member of the Astronaut Corps from 1998 to 2008, as part of the crew. Morgan was the backup for Christa McAuliffe who was on the ill-fated mission STS-51-L in 1986.

Early milestones

DateMilestone [9]
1982 February 15Start structural assembly of crew module (built as structural spare alongside Discovery and Atlantis) [10]
1987 July 31Contract award to Rockwell International
1987 August 1Start of Final Assembly
1987 September 28Start structural assembly of aft fuselage
1990 July 6Completed Final Assembly
1991 April 25Rollout from Plant 42, Palmdale, California
1991 May 7Delivery to Kennedy Space Center
1992 April 6Flight Readiness Firing (FRF)
1992 May 7First flight (STS-49)

Upgrades and features

Endeavour mounted on a Shuttle Carrier Aircraft Space Shuttle Transit.jpg
Endeavour mounted on a Shuttle Carrier Aircraft
Endeavour approaches LC-39A before STS-130 STS-130 Endeavour Rollout 6.jpg
Endeavour approaches LC-39A before STS-130
Endeavour in flight en route back to the Kennedy Space Center atop a Shuttle Carrier Aircraft in 2008 STS-126 Endeavour atop carrier aircraft.jpg
Endeavour in flight en route back to the Kennedy Space Center atop a Shuttle Carrier Aircraft in 2008
Endeavour lands after STS-127 at the Kennedy Space Center Shuttle Landing Facility Space Shuttle Endeavour Lands at the Kennedy Space Center on July 31st, 2009..jpg
Endeavour lands after STS-127 at the Kennedy Space Center Shuttle Landing Facility

As it was constructed later than its elder sisters, Endeavour was built with new hardware designed to improve and expand orbiter capabilities. Most of this equipment was later incorporated into the other three orbiters during out-of-service major inspection and modification programs. Endeavour's upgrades include:

Modifications resulting from a 2005–2006 refit of Endeavour included:

Final flights

Platforms around Endeavour in the Orbiter Processing Facility-2 Platforms Around Endeavour In Orbiter Processing Facility-2.jpg
Platforms around Endeavour in the Orbiter Processing Facility-2
Endeavour (left) docked to the International Space Station on May 23, 2011, during its final mission Endeavour docked to ISS.jpg
Endeavour (left) docked to the International Space Station on May 23, 2011, during its final mission

Endeavour flew its final mission, STS-134, to the International Space Station (ISS) in May 2011. After the conclusion of STS-134, Endeavour was formally decommissioned. [14]

STS-134 was intended to launch in late 2010, but on July 1 NASA released a statement saying the Endeavour mission was rescheduled for February 27, 2011. [15]

"The target dates were adjusted because critical payload hardware for STS-133 will not be ready in time to support the previously planned 16 September launch," NASA said in a statement. With the Discovery launch moving to November, Endeavour mission "cannot fly as planned, so the next available launch window is in February 2011," NASA said, adding that the launch dates were subject to change. [16]

The launch was further postponed until April to avoid a scheduling conflict with a Russian supply vehicle heading for the International Space Station. [17] STS-134 did not launch until May 16 at 08:56 EDT. [18]

Endeavour landed at the Kennedy Space Center at 06:34 UTC on June 1, 2011, completing its final mission. [19] It was the 25th night landing of a shuttle. [20] [21] Over its flight career, Endeavour flew 122,883,151 miles (197,761,262 km) and spent 299 days in space. [22] During Endeavour's last mission, the Russian spacecraft Soyuz TMA-20 departed from the ISS and paused at a distance of 200 metres (660 ft). Italian astronaut Paolo Nespoli took a series of photographs and videos of the ISS with Endeavour docked. [23] This was the second time a shuttle was photographed docked and the first time since 1996. Commander Mark Kelly was the last astronaut off Endeavour after the landing, and the crew stayed on the landing strip to sign autographs and pose for pictures. [24]

STS-134 was the penultimate Space Shuttle mission; STS-135 was added to the schedule in January 2011, and in July Atlantis flew for the final time. [25]


#DateDesignationLaunch padLanding locationNotes
11992-05-07 STS-49 39-B Edwards Air Force Base First flight of Endeavour: Capture and redeploy Intelsat VI. First three-person EVA, longest US EVA since Apollo 17.
21992-09-12 STS-47 39-B Kennedy Space Center Spacelab mission J with the first African American woman in space, Mae Jemison
31993-01-13 STS-54 39-BKennedyDeploy TDRS-F
41993-06-21 STS-57 39-BKennedySpacelab experiments. Retrieve European Retrievable Carrier
51993-12-02 STS-61 39-BKennedyFirst Hubble Space Telescope service mission (HSM-1)
61994-04-09 STS-59 39-AEdwards Space Radar Laboratory experiments
Spaceborne Imaging Radar
71994-09-30 STS-68 39-AEdwards Space Radar Laboratory experiments
Spaceborne Imaging Radar
81995-03-02 STS-67 39-AEdwardsSpacelab Astro-2 experiments‡
91995-09-07 STS-69 39-AKennedyWake Shield Facility and other experiments
101996-01-11 STS-72 39-BKennedyRetrieve Japanese Space Flyer Unit
111996-05-19 STS-77 39-BKennedySpacelab experiments
121998-01-22 STS-89 39-AKennedyRendezvous with Mir space station and astronaut exchange
131998-12-04 STS-88 39-AKennedy International Space Station assembly mission 2A (assembled the Unity Module (Node 1), first American component of the ISS)
142000-02-11 STS-99 39-AKennedy Shuttle Radar Topography Mission experiments
152000-11-30 STS-97 39-BKennedy International Space Station assembly mission (P6 truss segment)
162001-04-19 STS-100 39-AEdwards International Space Station assembly mission 6A (Canadarm2 robotic arm and hand)
172001-12-05 STS-108 39-BKennedy International Space Station assembly mission UF-1, rendezvous and astronaut exchange (Expedition 3/Expedition 4)
182002-06-05 STS-111 39-AEdwards International Space Station assembly mission UF-2, rendezvous and astronaut exchange (Expedition 4/Expedition 5)
192002-11-23 STS-113 39-AKennedy International Space Station assembly mission 11A and astronaut exchange/final successful shuttle flight before the Columbia disaster (Expedition 5/6 exchange; P1 truss segment assembly)
202007-08-08 STS-118 39-AKennedyFour spacewalks conducted. [26] Installation of the International Space Station S5 Truss, of the Integrated Truss Structure. Carried a SPACEHAB module carrying 5,000 pounds of supplies and equipment to the International Space Station. Crew included the Educator Astronaut Barbara Morgan. Thermal tiles protecting the underside of the vehicle were damaged during launch. NASA decided not to fix this damage in-flight as it was not believed to be serious enough to result in loss of vehicle or crew. The craft landed a day early due to the possibility that Hurricane Dean would force Mission Control to evacuate.
212008-03-11 STS-123 39-AKennedy International Space Station assembly mission 1J/A which delivered the first element of Japan's Kibo module along with the Canadian Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator robotic arm, and the Spacelab Pallet-Deployable 1.
222008-11-14 STS-126 39-AEdwards [27] International Space Station assembly mission that brought equipment and supplies in the Multi-Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo, and Expedition 18 crew rotation, Sandra Magnus replaced Gregory Chamitoff. Endeavour was the only orbiter to land on the temporary Runway 4 at Edwards AFB, as the refurbished main runway will be operational from STS-119 onwards. [28]
232009-07-15 [29] STS-127 39-AKennedy International Space Station assembly mission which delivered the last two elements of Japan's Kibo Module along with the Spacelab Pallet-Deployable 2, and an Integrated Cargo Carrier-Vertical Light Deployable. [30]
242010-02-08 STS-130 39-AKennedy International Space Station assembly mission which delivered the Node 3 and the Cupola observatory to the station. This brought the ISS to 98 percent completion.
252011-05-16 STS-134 39-AKennedy International Space Station assembly mission which delivered the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer and the ELC-3 to the space station. This was the final mission of Endeavour. Although originally planned to be the last Space Shuttle program flight, one additional flight of Atlantis, STS-135, was flown in July 2011.

‡ Longest shuttle mission for Endeavour

Tribute and mission insignias

NASA Orbiter Tribute for Space Shuttle Endeavour
Space Shuttle Endeavour Tribute.jpg
Mission insignia for Endeavour flights
STS-59 patch.svg
STS-69 patch.svg
STS-100 patch.svg
STS-108 Patch.svg
STS-113 Patch.svg
STS-118 patch new.svg
STS-123 Patch.svg
STS-126 patch.svg
STS-127 Patch.svg
STS-130 patch.png
STS-134 Patch.svg

Flow Directors

The Flow Director was responsible for the overall preparation of the Shuttle for launch and processing it after landing, and remained permanently assigned to head the spacecraft's ground crew while the astronaut flight crews changed for every mission. Each Shuttle's Flow Director was supported by a Vehicle Manager for the same spacecraft. Space Shuttle Endeavour's Flow Directors were:


After more than twenty organizations submitted proposals for the display of an orbiter, [36] [37] on April 12, 2011, NASA announced that the Space Shuttle Endeavour would go to the California Science Center in Los Angeles. [38] The Space Shuttle was mounted on the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft and departed from the Kennedy Space Center on September 19, 2012, heading to the Los Angeles International Airport, with some refueling stops in Ellington Field and Edwards Air Force Base. After low level flyovers above NASA and civic landmarks across the country and in California, it was delivered to LAX on September 21. [39] It was then hoisted off the aircraft and was placed inside a United Airlines hangar to prepare for its transportation through the streets of Los Angeles. [40]

Endeavour moving through Los Angeles Space Shuttle Endeavour in Los Angeles - 2012 (37919560104).jpg
Endeavour moving through Los Angeles

On October 11 at 11:30pm, Endeavor left the hangar on four self-propelled robotic transporters and the orbiter was slowly left the airport and was carefully transported through the streets of Los Angeles. [41] [42] [43] The Space Shuttle's 12-mile (19 km) journey was meticulously measured and each move was carefully choreographed. [44] In multiple locations, there were only inches of clearance for the shuttle's wide wings between telephone poles, apartment buildings and other structures. Many street light standards and traffic signals were temporarily removed as the shuttle passed through. It was necessary to remove over 400 street trees as well, some of which were fairly old, leading to concern. [45] However, the removed trees were replaced two-for-one by the Science Center, using part of the $200 million funding for the move. [44]

The power had to be turned off and power carrying poles had to be removed temporarily as the orbiter crept along the streets. News crews lined the streets along the path with visible news personalities in the news trucks. Police escorts and other security personnel, among them including the LAPD, LASD, CHP, and NASA officials, controlled the large crowds gathered, with support from the LAFD and LACoFD to treat heat exhaustion victims as Endeavour made its way through the city. [46] Endeavour was sometimes parked for a few hours at certain places, such as Randy's Donuts, and The Forum where it was available for viewing. [47] [48]

Endeavour's biggest part of the journey was crossing the Manchester Boulevard Bridge over Interstate 405. However, due to weight restrictions of the bridge, the shuttle was moved from the robotic transporters to a lighter non-powered dolly and was towed across the bridge by an unmodified Toyota Tundra. [49] Once it had completely crossed the bridge, the shuttle was then returned to the robotic transporters to continue its course. Toyota used the footage of Endeavour crossing the bridge in a commercial for the 2013 Super Bowl, [50] and the Tundra used to pull the shuttle was donated to the Science Center, where it became part of an exhibit on leverage. [51] Having taken longer than expected, Endeavour reached the Science Center on October 14 at 7:30pm. [52] Prior to its arrival, a temporary building was constructed on the side of the museum to house the Space Shuttle, while it awaited its permanent home. [53] The Space Shuttle's entire journey through the streets of Los Angeles was often dubbed as Mission 26: The Big Endeavour, a nod to its 25 space missions during its career. [54]

California Science Center

Space Shuttle Endeavour in the temporary Samuel Oschin Pavilion (Feb 2023) Space Shuttle Endeavor at the California Science Center.jpg
Space Shuttle Endeavour in the temporary Samuel Oschin Pavilion (Feb 2023)

On October 30, 2012, the Space Shuttle Endeavour was opened to the public. [48] The shuttle was display inside the temporary Samuel Oschin Pavilion, [53] where guests offered to not only walk around Endeavour, but also under it, as the vehicle was displayed in the horizontal atop raised mounted on four friction-pendulum seismic isolators to protect it from earthquakes. [48] The shuttle remained inside the temporary pavilion until December 31, 2023. [55] A companion exhibit, "Endeavour: The California Story" (later renamed, "Endeavour Together: Parts & People"), features images and artifacts that related the Space Shuttle program to California, where the orbiters were originally constructed. [56]

On May 28, 2015, NASA donated the last remaining external tank, which was displayed in 2016, outside with the Samuel Oschin Pavilion. [57] [58] [59] On September 20, 2020, Northrop Grumman donates a pair of flight-proven solid rocket boosters for Endeavour. [60]

After its decommissioning, Endeavour's Canadarm (formally the 'Shuttle Remote Manipulator System') was removed in order to be sent to the Canadian Space Agency's John H. Chapman Space Centre in Longueuil, Quebec, a suburb of Montreal, where it was to be placed on display. [61] In a Canadian poll on which science or aerospace museum should be selected to display the Canadarm, originally built by SPAR Aerospace, the Canadian Space Agency's headquarters placed third to last with only 35 out of 638 votes. [62] [63] Endeavour's Canadarm has since gone on permanent display at the Canada Aviation and Space Museum in Ottawa. [64] [65] [66] In August 2015, NASA engineers removed a few of the tanks from Endeavour for reuse as storage containers for potable water on the International Space Station. [67]

A new addition to the Science Center, called the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center, will serve as Endeavour's new permanent home. Once finished, it will be the only Space Shuttle mounted vertically in launch position. A 20-story-tall display with an external fuel tank, (ET-94, the last mission-ready one in existence as all others were destroyed during launch) and a pair of solid rocket boosters, (SRBs) as if looks like Endeavour were to make one more flight. One payload door will be opened out to reveal a demonstration payload inside. [48] Originally slated to open in 2015, construction on the new building started on June 1, 2022. [68] [69] ET-94 underwent restoration after being used to analyze the foam on its sister tank, which was a factor in the failure of STS-107. [70]

On July 20, 2023, the assembly of the stack began with the aft skirts (bottom segments of the SRBs) being precisely positioned on a concrete slab supported by six base isolators that will protect Endeavour from earthquakes. [71] The SRBs was fully assembled on December 5. [72] On January 3, 2024, Endeavour was protected in a shrink wrap, likely to stay on until after the construction is complete. [73] The ET-94 tank was then moved into its permanent position in January 16. [74] [75] On January 30, the Space Shuttle was then moved into its permanent position, completing the stack. Once all components of Endeavour are in place, construction on the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center continues, as it will be built around it. The new building is estimated to be open in 2025.


Crew Dragon C206 Endeavour was named by Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken as a tribute to the Space Shuttle Endeavour. The SpaceX Crew Dragon approaches the International Space Station (iss063e021463).jpg
Crew Dragon C206 Endeavour was named by Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken as a tribute to the Space Shuttle Endeavour.

Following their May 30, 2020, launch on board the SpaceX Crew Dragon Demo-2 vehicle, the crew announced in orbit that they had named their spacecraft Endeavour . Astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley said the name has a dual meaning: first, after the "incredible endeavor" put forth by SpaceX and NASA after the retirement of the Space Shuttle fleet in 2011; and second, because both Hurley and Behnken each flew their first flight aboard the shuttle Endeavour (Behnken on STS-123, Hurley on STS-127) and wanted to name this new spacecraft after the one that took each of them into space. [76] The shuttle appeared in the 2022 films Moonfall and Beavis and Butt-Head Do the Universe .


A replica of a section of Endeavour is on exhibit outside the Discovery Cube Orange County, a science museum in Santa Ana, California. [77]

See also

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Space Shuttle</span> Partially reusable launch system and space plane

The Space Shuttle is a retired, partially reusable low Earth orbital spacecraft system operated from 1981 to 2011 by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) as part of the Space Shuttle program. Its official program name was Space Transportation System (STS), taken from a 1969 plan for a system of reusable spacecraft where it was the only item funded for development.

Space Shuttle <i>Columbia</i> Orbiter in NASAs Space Shuttle program; operational from 1981 until the 2003 disaster

Space Shuttle Columbia (OV-102) was a Space Shuttle orbiter manufactured by Rockwell International and operated by NASA. Named after the first American ship to circumnavigate the upper North American Pacific coast and the female personification of the United States, Columbia was the first of five Space Shuttle orbiters to fly in space, debuting the Space Shuttle launch vehicle on its maiden flight on April 12, 1981. As only the second full-scale orbiter to be manufactured after the Approach and Landing Test vehicle Enterprise, Columbia retained unique features indicative of its experimental design compared to later orbiters, such as test instrumentation and distinctive black chines. In addition to a heavier fuselage and the retention of an internal airlock throughout its lifetime, these made Columbia the heaviest of the five spacefaring orbiters; around 1,000 kilograms heavier than Challenger and 3,600 kilograms heavier than Endeavour. Columbia also carried ejection seats based on those from the SR-71 during its first six flights until 1983, and from 1986 onwards carried an imaging pod on its vertical stabilizer.

Space Shuttle <i>Discovery</i> NASA orbiter (1984 to 2011)

Space Shuttle Discovery is a retired American spacecraft. The spaceplane was one of the orbiters from NASA's Space Shuttle program and the third of five fully operational orbiters to be built. Its first mission, STS-41-D, flew from August 30 to September 5, 1984. Over 27 years of service it launched and landed 39 times, aggregating more spaceflights than any other spacecraft to date. The Space Shuttle launch vehicle had three main components: the Space Shuttle orbiter, a single-use central fuel tank, and two reusable solid rocket boosters. Nearly 25,000 heat-resistant tiles cover the orbiter to protect it from high temperatures on re-entry.

Space Shuttle <i>Atlantis</i> Retired NASA orbiter shuttle (1985–2011)

Space Shuttle Atlantis is a retired Space Shuttle orbiter vehicle which belongs to NASA, the spaceflight and space exploration agency of the United States. Atlantis was manufactured by the Rockwell International company in Southern California and was delivered to the Kennedy Space Center in Eastern Florida in April 1985. Atlantis is also the fourth operational and the second-to-last Space Shuttle built. Its maiden flight was STS-51-J made from October 3 to 7, 1985.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Space Shuttle program</span> 1972–2011 United States human spaceflight program

The Space Shuttle program was the fourth human spaceflight program carried out by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), which accomplished routine transportation for Earth-to-orbit crew and cargo from 1981 to 2011. Its official name, Space Transportation System (STS), was taken from a 1969 plan for a system of reusable spacecraft of which it was the only item funded for development. It flew 135 missions and carried 355 astronauts from 16 countries, many on multiple trips.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-2</span> 1981 American crewed spaceflight

STS-2 was the second Space Shuttle mission conducted by NASA, and the second flight of the orbiter Columbia. The mission, crewed by Joe H. Engle and Richard H. Truly, launched on November 12, 1981, and landed two days later on November 14, 1981. STS-2 marked the first time that a crewed, reusable orbital vehicle returned to space. This mission tested the Shuttle Imaging Radar (SIR) as part of the OSTA-1 payload, along with a wide range of other experiments including the Shuttle robotic arm, commonly known as Canadarm. Other experiments or tests included Shuttle Multispectral Infrared Radiometer, Feature Identification and Location Experiment, Measurement of Air Pollution from Satellites, Ocean Color Experiment, Night/Day optical Survey of Lightning, Heflex Bioengineering Test, and Aerodynamic Coefficient Identification Package (ACIP). One of the feats accomplished was various tests on the Orbital Maneuvring System (OMS) including starting and restarting the engines while in orbit and various adjustments to its orbit. The OMS tests also helped adjust the Shuttle's orbit for use of the radar. During the mission, President Reagan called the crew of STS-2 from Mission Control Center in Houston.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-88</span> First Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station

STS-88 was the first Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station (ISS). It was flown by Space Shuttle Endeavour, and took the first American module, the Unity node, to the station.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">G. David Low</span> American astronaut (1956–2008)

George David Low was an American aerospace executive and a NASA astronaut. With undergraduate degrees in physics and mechanical engineering and a master's degree in aeronautics and astronautics, he worked in the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) at the California Institute of Technology in the early 80's, before being picked as an astronaut candidate by NASA in 1984. In addition to holding some technical assignments, he logged more than 700 hours in space, before he left NASA in 1996 to pursue a career in the private sector. He was the son of George M. Low, the manager of the Apollo Spacecraft Program Office, and later, the 14th president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Canadarm</span> Robotic arm used to manoeuvre and capture mission payloads on the Space Shuttle

Canadarm or Canadarm1 is a series of robotic arms that were used on the Space Shuttle orbiters to deploy, manoeuvre, and capture payloads. After the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, the Canadarm was always paired with the Orbiter Boom Sensor System (OBSS), which was used to inspect the exterior of the shuttle for damage to the thermal protection system.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-115</span> 2006 American crewed spaceflight to the ISS

STS-115 was a Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station (ISS) flown by Space ShuttleAtlantis. It was the first assembly mission to the ISS after the Columbia disaster, following the two successful Return to Flight missions, STS-114 and STS-121. STS-115 launched from LC-39B at the Kennedy Space Center on September 9, 2006, at 11:14:55 EDT.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-118</span> 2007 American crewed spaceflight to the ISS

STS-118 was a Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station (ISS) flown by the orbiter Endeavour. STS-118 lifted off on August 8, 2007, from launch pad 39A at Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Florida and landed at the Shuttle Landing Facility at KSC on August 21, 2007.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Orbiter Boom Sensor System</span>

The Orbiter Boom Sensor System (OBSS) was a 50-foot boom carried on board NASA's Space Shuttles. The boom was grappled by the Canadarm and served as an extension of the arm, doubling its length to a combined total of 100 feet. At the far end of the boom was an instrumentation package of cameras and lasers used to scan the leading edges of the wings, the nose cap, and the crew compartment after each lift-off and before each landing. If flight engineers suspected potential damage to other areas, as evidenced in imagery captured during lift-off or the rendezvous pitch maneuver, then additional regions could be scanned.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-126</span> 2008 American crewed spaceflight to the ISS

STS-126 was the one hundred and twenty-fourth NASA Space Shuttle mission, and twenty-second orbital flight of the Space Shuttle Endeavour (OV-105) to the International Space Station (ISS). The purpose of the mission, referred to as ULF2 by the ISS program, was to deliver equipment and supplies to the station, to service the Solar Alpha Rotary Joints (SARJ), and repair the problem in the starboard SARJ that had limited its use since STS-120. STS-126 launched on 15 November 2008 at 00:55:39 UTC from Launch Pad 39A (LC-39A) at NASA's Kennedy Space Center (KSC) with no delays or issues. Endeavour successfully docked with the station on 16 November 2008. After spending 15 days, 20 hours, 30 minutes, and 30 seconds docked to the station, during which the crew performed four spacewalks, and transferred cargo, the orbiter undocked on 28 November 2008. Due to poor weather at Kennedy Space Center, Endeavour landed at Edwards Air Force Base on 30 November 2008 at 21:25:09 UTC.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-123</span> 2008 American crewed spaceflight to the ISS

STS-123 was a Space Shuttle mission to the International Space Station (ISS) which was flown by Space Shuttle Endeavour. STS-123 was the 1J/A ISS assembly mission. The original launch target date was February 14, 2008, but after the delay of STS-122, the shuttle was launched on March 11, 2008. It was the twenty-fifth shuttle mission to visit the ISS, and delivered the first module of the Japanese laboratory, Japanese Experiment Module (Kibō), and the Canadian Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator, (SPDM) Dextre robotics system to the station. The mission duration was 15 days and 18 hours, and it was the first mission to fully utilize the Station-to-Shuttle Power Transfer System (SSPTS), allowing space station power to augment the shuttle power systems. The mission set a record for a shuttle's longest stay at the ISS.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Space Shuttle orbiter</span> Reusable spacecraft component of the Space Shuttle system

The Space Shuttle orbiter is the spaceplane component of the Space Shuttle, a partially reusable orbital spacecraft system that was part of the discontinued Space Shuttle program. Operated from 1981 to 2011 by NASA, the U.S. space agency, this vehicle could carry astronauts and payloads into low Earth orbit, perform in-space operations, then re-enter the atmosphere and land as a glider, returning its crew and any on-board payload to the Earth.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">K. Megan McArthur</span> American oceanographer and NASA astronaut (born 1971)

Katherine Megan McArthur is an American oceanographer, engineer, and NASA astronaut. She has served as a Capsule Communicator (CAPCOM) for both the Space Shuttle and International Space Station (ISS). Megan McArthur has flown one Space Shuttle mission, STS-125 and one SpaceX mission, SpaceX Crew-2 on Crew Dragon Endeavour. She is known as the last person to be hands on with the Hubble Space Telescope via the Canadarm. McArthur has served in a number of positions including working in the Shuttle Avionics Laboratory (SAIL). She is married to fellow astronaut Robert L. Behnken.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-134</span> 2011 American crewed spaceflight to the ISS and final flight of Space Shuttle Endeavour

STS-134 was the penultimate mission of NASA's Space Shuttle program and the 25th and last spaceflight of Space ShuttleEndeavour. This flight delivered the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer and an ExPRESS Logistics Carrier to the International Space Station. Mark Kelly served as the mission commander. STS-134 was expected to be the final Space Shuttle mission if STS-135 did not receive funding from Congress. However, in February 2011, NASA stated that STS-135 would fly "regardless" of the funding situation. STS-135, flown by Atlantis, took advantage of the processing for STS-335, the Launch on Need mission that would have been necessary if the STS-134 crew became stranded in orbit.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">NASA Astronaut Group 16</span> 1996 human spaceflight selection of 44 candidates; "The Sardines"

NASA Astronaut Group 16 was a group of 44 astronauts announced by NASA on May 1, 1996. The class was nicknamed "The Sardines" for being such a large class, humorously implying that their training sessions would be as tightly packed as sardines in a can. These 44 candidates compose the largest astronaut class to date. NASA selected so many candidates in preparation for the anticipated need for ISS crew members, along with regular shuttle needs. Nine of the 44 astronauts selected were from other countries including 5 from Europe and 2 from Canada and Japan.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">STS-135</span> 2011 American crewed spaceflight to the ISS and final flight of the Space Shuttle program

STS-135 was the 135th and final mission of the American Space Shuttle program. It used the orbiter Atlantis and hardware originally processed for the STS-335 contingency mission, which was not flown. STS-135 launched on July 8, 2011, and landed on July 21, 2011, following a one-day mission extension. The four-person crew was the smallest of any shuttle mission since STS-6 in April 1983. The mission's primary cargo was the Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM) Raffaello and a Lightweight Multi-Purpose Carrier (LMC), which were delivered to the International Space Station (ISS). The flight of Raffaello marked the only time that Atlantis carried an MPLM.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Space Shuttle retirement</span> End of NASAs Space Shuttle spacecraft system in 2011

The retirement of NASA's Space Shuttle fleet took place from March to July 2011. Discovery was the first of the three active Space Shuttles to be retired, completing its final mission on March 9, 2011; Endeavour did so on June 1. The final shuttle mission was completed with the landing of Atlantis on July 21, 2011, closing the 30-year Space Shuttle program.


  1. "Space Shuttle Overview: Endeavour (OV-105)". NASA. Archived from the original on February 22, 2020. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  2. "STS-49". NASA KSC. Archived from the original on February 17, 2013. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  3. "Endeavour completes final mission; NASA has one left". CNN. June 1, 2011. Retrieved June 1, 2011.
  4. "Consolidated Launch Manifest". NASA. Archived from the original on March 7, 2009. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  5. "The Naming Of The Space Shuttle Endeavour". NASA. Archived from the original on August 23, 2011. Retrieved June 30, 2011.
  6. John F. Kennedy Space Center – Space Shuttle Endeavour Archived May 21, 2011, at the Wayback Machine . Retrieved on May 20, 2012.
  7. "Shuttle's Name Misspelled On NASA Launch Pad Sign". WKMG-TV. Archived from the original on July 16, 2007.
  8. 125,000 see Endeavour land: Satellite rescue highlights maiden trip. Daily Breeze. Retrieved on July 21, 2015.
  9. "Shuttle Orbiter Endeavour (OV-105)". NASA/KSC. Archived from the original on May 1, 2011. Retrieved November 28, 2012.
  10. Marconi, Elaine. "NASA – Space Shuttle Overview: Endeavour (OV-105)". Archived from the original on February 22, 2020. Retrieved March 12, 2008.
  11. "Vehicle Upgrades: Station-Shuttle Power Transfer System (SSPTS)". Boeing: Integrated Defense Systems. Archived from the original on March 18, 2007.
  12. "NASA Presolicitation Notice: Station-Shuttle Power Transfer System (SSPTS)". NASA. October 26, 2003. Retrieved June 30, 2011.[ permanent dead link ]
  13. "NASA's Space Shuttle Processing Status Report: S05-034". NASA. December 2, 2005. Archived from the original on December 8, 2007. Retrieved September 14, 2006.
  14. "OV-105 "Endeavour"". California Science Center. June 30, 2014. Retrieved September 12, 2016.
  15. "NASA Updates Shuttle Target Launch Dates For Final Two Flights". NASA. July 1, 2010. Archived from the original on June 12, 2012. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  16. "NASA reschedules two final space shuttle launches". Space Travel. July 1, 2010. Retrieved November 20, 2016.
  17. "Unmanned Russian cargo ship heads for space station". CNN. April 4, 2011. Archived from the original on January 14, 2012.
  18. "STS-134". NASA. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  19. "Endeavour completes final mission; one flight left for NASA". CNN. June 1, 2011. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
  20. Dunn, Marcia (January 6, 2011). "Endeavour's last landing sparks pride and sadness". NBC News. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  21. Harwood, William (June 1, 2011). "Endeavour ends final mission with smooth landing; The Space Shot". CNET News. Archived from the original on March 26, 2020. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  22. "Space Shuttle Era Facts" (PDF), NASA, July 5, 2011, archived from the original (PDF) on July 14, 2019, retrieved August 2, 2016
  23. "Soyuz TMA-20 captures historic photography prior to perfect landing". NASASpaceFlight. May 23, 2011. Retrieved October 12, 2012.
  24. "Next-to-last space shuttle flight lands on Earth". Deseret News. June 1, 2011. Retrieved February 9, 2023.
  25. "STS-135: The Final Voyage". NASA. July 27, 2011. Archived from the original on July 27, 2019. Retrieved February 3, 2017.
  26. "Space Shuttle Mission STS-122". May 24, 2009. Retrieved July 17, 2009.
  27. NASA (November 30, 2008). "NASA RSS archive". NASA. Archived from the original on October 16, 2009. Retrieved November 30, 2008.
  28. Bergin, Chris (November 30, 2008). "Endeavour lands at Edwards to conclude STS-126". Retrieved November 30, 2008.
  29. "NASA's Shuttle and Rocket Launch Schedule". Retrieved July 17, 2009.
  30. "STS-127 MCC Status Report No. 32". NASA. July 31, 2009. Archived from the original on August 1, 2009. Retrieved August 1, 2009.
  31. "ISS Assembly missions". NASA. Archived from the original on October 16, 2008. Retrieved August 16, 2012.
  32. "KSC Names Two Space Shuttle Flow Directors". Archived from the original on January 1, 2014. Retrieved September 8, 2013.
  33. KSC, Kay Grinter. "NASA – Biography of Tassos Abadiotakis". Archived from the original on September 25, 2020. Retrieved September 8, 2013.
  34. Regan, Rebecca. "NASA – Biography of Ken Tenbusch". Retrieved August 5, 2023.
  35. "NASA – Dana M. Hutcherson, Launch Vehicle Systems Office Deputy Manager, NASA's Commercial Crew Program". Archived from the original on September 25, 2020. Retrieved September 8, 2013.
  36. Simon, Richard (August 14, 2010). "With shuttles becoming museum pieces, cities vie to land one". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 14, 2012.
  37. "Discovery's Final Home 'Up In The Air'". United Press International. November 1, 2010. Retrieved October 14, 2012.
  38. Stanglin, Douglas (April 12, 2011). "NYC, L.A., Kennedy Space Center, Smithsonian to get the 4 retired space shuttles". USA Today. Retrieved October 14, 2012.
  39. Simon, Richard (April 12, 2012). "Delivering the space shuttles is tougher than you think". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 19, 2012.
  40. Pearlman, Robert Z. (September 21, 2012). "Space Shuttle Endeavour Lands in L.A. for Display at California Science Center". Retrieved March 4, 2024.
  41. Pearlman, Robert Z. (October 12, 2012). "Space Shuttle Endeavour Embarks on L.A. Road Trip". Retrieved March 29, 2024.
  42. "Space shuttle Endeavour route, street closures & viewing areas". ABC7 News. Archived from the original on October 14, 2012. Retrieved October 12, 2012.
  43. Mather, Kate; Flores, Adolfo; Geber, Marisa; Khouri, Andrew; Weiss, Ken (October 13, 2012). "Space shuttle Endeavour rolls on toward its new home". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  44. 1 2 Anton, Mike (September 16, 2012). "Shuttle Endeavour's final journey is carefully choreographed". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved December 19, 2017.
  45. Singh, Timon (September 9, 2012). "400 Trees Cut Down to Make Way For Space Shuttle Endeavour's Los Angeles Arrival". Inhabitat – Sustainable Design Innovation, Eco Architecture, Green Building.
  46. CBS News (October 14, 2012). "Space shuttle Endeavour's slow commute through Los Angeles". CBS News Los Angeles. Archived from the original on August 13, 2019. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
  47. "Hole punched in doughnut shop's hopes for shuttle celebration". Los Angeles Times. October 12, 2012. Retrieved March 19, 2024.
  48. 1 2 3 4 "Space Shuttle Endeavour homepage". California Science Center. 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2012.
  49. Morton, Neal (October 13, 2012). "Shuttle Endeavour hitches a ride with S.A. truck". San Antonio Express-News. Retrieved October 14, 2012.
  50. Harwood, Allyson (October 15, 2012). "How a 2012 Toyota Tundra Towed the Space Shuttle Endeavour". Motor Trend's Truck Trend. Retrieved July 17, 2013.
  51. Toyota. "California Science Center Unveils Giant Lever Exhibit Featuring the Toyota Tundra Used During Space Shuttle Endeavour Transport". Retrieved April 15, 2024.
  52. "Endeavour Arrives at California Science Center". NBC News Los Angeles. October 14, 2012. Retrieved October 14, 2012.
  53. 1 2 Lin II, Rong-Gong (October 9, 2014). "Space shuttle Endeavour inches closer to completion of final exhibit". Los Angeles Times . Retrieved June 2, 2019.
  54. Malik, Tariq (October 17, 2012). "Shuttle Endeavour's L.A. Journey Stars in Stunning Time-Lapse Movie". Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  55. Pearlman, Robert Z. (December 31, 2023). "End of year, end of exhibit: Space shuttle Endeavour goes off view for a few years". Retrieved January 1, 2024.
  56. "Welcome to the California Science Center". California Science Center.
  57. "NASA gives California Science Center museum last remaining space shuttle fuel tank". LA Times. May 28, 2015. Retrieved March 6, 2016.
  58. "The California Science Center's External Tank". Retrieved May 29, 2015.
  59. Pearlman, Robert Z. (May 22, 2016). "Space Shuttle External Tank Completes Road Trip to CA Science Center". Retrieved March 31, 2024.
  60. Evans, Ben (September 20, 2020). "Northrop Grumman Donates Flight-Proven SRBs to Endeavour Exhibit at CSC - AmericaSpace". AmericaSpace. Retrieved April 16, 2024.
  61. Canadian Space Agency. The Canadarm Is Returning Home Archived March 26, 2014, at the Wayback Machine , Montreal: Canadian Space Agency press release, July 16, 2012. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
  62. "Canadian Space Agency Requests Proposals To Display Canadarm At St. Hubert Headquarters". SpaceRefCanada. Archived from the original on January 15, 2013. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
  63. "Endeavour's Canadarm coming home". CBC. April 12, 2011. Retrieved October 14, 2012.
  64. Johnson, Andy (May 2, 2013). "Unveiling exhibit, Hadfield sends first Canadarm 'last command' from space". CTV News. Retrieved May 2, 2013.
  65. Howell, Elizabeth (May 2, 2013). "Space Shuttle's Robotic Arm Goes on Display at Canadian Museum". Retrieved May 2, 2013.
  66. Canadian Space Agency (May 2, 2013). "Minister Moore Unveils Exhibit for Canada's National Space Icon: the Canadarm". Canadian Space Agency. Archived from the original on May 6, 2013. Retrieved July 1, 2013.
  67. "Tanks from retired shuttle Endeavour will be used for water storage on space station". U.S. News & World Report. August 19, 2015. Retrieved November 20, 2022.
  68. Lin II, Rong-Gong; Campa, Andrew J. (June 1, 2022). "Space shuttle Endeavour is getting its own grand museum in L.A., displayed in launch position". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 4, 2022.
  69. Wisdom, McKenzie (June 9, 2022). "Groundbreaking at California Science Center's Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center". MATT Construction. Retrieved October 11, 2023.
  70. Branson-Potts, Hailey (April 10, 2016). "Last flight-qualified space shuttle fuel tank in existence begins its journey to L.A." Los Angeles Times . Retrieved April 20, 2019.
  71. "California Science Center starts complex process to display Space Shuttle Endeavour vertically". KTLA. Associated Press. July 20, 2023. Retrieved July 21, 2023.
  72. "Endeavour's Final Move". California Science Center.
  73. Pearlman, Robert (January 3, 2024). "Up next for Endeavour LA exhibit: Tank lift and shuttle shrink wrap". Yahoo News. Retrieved April 3, 2024.
  74. Lin II, Rong-Gong (January 2, 2024). "Space shuttle Endeavour's giant orange external tank begins final journey". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 3, 2024.
  75. Campa, Andrew J.; Lin II, Rong-Gong (January 12, 2024). "Mission accomplished: Space shuttle Endeavour's giant orange fuel tank moved into viewing spot in L.A." Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 16, 2024.
  76. Boyle, Alan. "Crew Dragon's astronauts give their SpaceX spaceship a storied name: Endeavour". GeekWire. Retrieved May 30, 2020.
  77. Evans, Larry (June 2, 2005). "Have Shuttle, Will Travel: Endeavour Takes Shape at Discovery Science Center". Retrieved November 3, 2022.