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Occurred 35 years ago

STS-27 was dedicated to the Department of Defense.



mission duration

4 days, 9 hours, 5 minutes, 37 seconds


Dec. 2, 1988


Dec. 6, 1988
Five astronauts in blue shirts pose for crew portrait
S88-45002 (August 1988) — These five astronauts will fly aboard the Space Shuttle Atlantis for the STS-27 mission. They are (seated left to right) astronauts Guy S. Gardner, Robert L. Gibson and Jerry L. Ross; and (standing, left to right) William M. Shepherd and Richard M. (Mike) Mullane. Gibson is commander; Gardner, pilot; and the other three will serve as mission specialists.

Mission Facts

Mission: Department of Defense
Space Shuttle: Atlantis
Launch Pad: 39B
Launch Weight: Classified
Launched: Dec. 2, 1988, 9:30:34 a.m. EST
Landing Site: Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.
Landing: Dec. 6, 1988, 3:36:11 p.m. PST
Landing Weight: 190,956 pounds
Runway: 17
Rollout Distance: 7,123 feet
Rollout Time: 43 seconds
Revolution: 68
Mission Duration: 4 days, 9 hours, 5 minutes, 37 seconds
Returned to KSC: Dec. 13, 1988
Orbit Altitude: Classified
Orbit Inclination: 57 degrees
Miles Traveled: 1.8 million


Robert L. Gibson, Commander
Guy S. Gardner, Pilot
Jerry L. Ross, Mission Specialist
William M. Shepherd, Mission Specialist
Richard M. (Mike) Mullane, Mission Specialist

Launch Highlights

The launch set for December 1 during a classified window lying within a launch period between 6:32 a.m. and 9:32 a.m., was postponed due to unacceptable cloud cover and wind conditions and reset for the same launch period on December 2.

Mission Highlights

Third mission dedicated to the Department of Defense.

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