NASA's space shuttle fleet was comprised of orbiters Atlantis, Challenger, Columbia, Discovery, Endeavour and a prototype craft named Enterprise. The space shuttle program began in 1981 and conducted 135 missions.
NASA's space shuttle was the world's first reusable spacecraft and was designed to carry astronauts and equipment into orbit. The first two shuttles constructed, Columbia and Challenger, were both lost during missions. NASA's remaining shuttles were officially retired in 2011, with the remaining three shuttles placed on permanent public display. As of 2014, they remain at California Science Center, the Smithsonian's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center and the Kennedy Space Center.Learn More
The invention of the space shuttle occurred over many years beginning with the announcement of the shuttle design program in 1972 and ending with the first shuttle launch in 1981, though many improvements occurred throughout the years. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration designed the first space shuttle.Full Answer >
The NASA space shuttles, which ceased operation in 2011, orbited Earth at 17,500 miles per hour, according to SPACE.com. At this speed, the space shuttle traveled more than 5 miles every second. During operation, the space shuttle fleet traveled more that 500 million miles.Full Answer >
According to NASA, the space shuttle had to be going 17,500 miles per hour to maintain orbit around the Earth. As a comparison, the equator is 24,901.55 miles long.Full Answer >
The U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration says that the space shuttle holds more than 1 million gallons of propellants at liftoff. The space shuttle uses a combination of oxygen, hydrogen, hydrazine, monomethylhydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide to power the craft, and fuel is needed at liftoff and while in use.Full Answer >