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April 4, 2006

Dryden Flight Research Center
P.O. Box 273
Edwards, California 93523
Phone 661-276-3449
FAX 661-276-3566

Leslie Williams
NASA Dryden Flight Research Center
Phone: (661) 276-3893

First Space Shuttle Landing to be Recalled at Media Briefing

NASA retirees and others who played a major role in the first space shuttle landing at Edwards Air Force Base 25 years ago will gather on Monday, April 10 to share their recollections of that milestone at a media briefing at NASA Dryden Flight Research Center. Inside NASA's modified 747 shuttle carrier aircraft, media will have the opportunity to relive that historic event with the people who contributing to making that first landing of the Space Shuttle Columbia on April 14, 1981 such a success.

Following the 90-minute briefing and interview period, media will have the opportunity to tour the lakebed viewing site that was temporary home to thousands of visitors who watched the landing. B-roll video of the first shuttle landing will be available for TV crews.

News media representatives interested in participating must submit a request for accreditation to the NASA Dryden public affairs office by April 6 for the April 10 media event. Personal information that will be needed: full name, date of birth, place of birth, media organization, the last six digits of the social security number and driver's license number, including issuing state.

What: Media briefing, 25th anniversary of first space shuttle mission
Who: NASA and Air Force personnel who supported the event
When: 10 a.m. to about 12:30 p.m., Monday, April 10, 2006
Where: NASA Dryden Flight Research Center, Edwards Air Force Base
Media access: Contact Alan Brown, NASA Dryden public affairs, at (661) 276-2665, alan.brown@nasa.gov, by no later than 4 p.m. Thursday, April 6.

Birthplace for the orbiters, the Antelope Valley has been an integral part of the space shuttle program, recently hosting its 50th landing at Edwards Air Force Base on August 9, 2005. NASA Dryden pilots and engineers performed a great extent of the early work on the program, testing and validating the design concepts that helped determine the configuration of the nation's first reusable spacecraft. Astronauts John W. Young, commander, and Robert Crippen, pilot, soared into space in Columbia from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida on April 12, 1981. The primary mission of the first flight, STS-1, was to launch safely into orbit, check out the systems of the shuttle then return to Earth safely in the Mojave Desert. This shakedown flight of the spacecraft was the first manned flight using solid rocket boosters. No previous United States space vehicle had been manned on its maiden voyage.

For more information about the Space Shuttle Program and STS-1, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/shuttle.


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