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STS-54 Endeavour, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 105, crew insignia


Occurred 31 years ago

Deployment of the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-F).



mission duration

5 days, 23 hours, 38 minutes


January 13, 1993


January 19, 1993
STS-54 Endeavour, Orbiter Vehicle (OV) 105, official crew portrait in shuttle
The five NASA astronauts assigned to fly aboard the space shuttle Endeavour for the mission pose for a crew portrait on the flight deck. Left to right are astronauts Mario Runco, mission specialist; John H. Casper, commander; Donald R. McMonagle, pilot; and mission specialists Susan J. Helms and Gregory J. Harbaugh. (August 1992)

STS-54 Mission Facts

Mission: TDRS-F; DXS
Space Shuttle: Endeavour
Launch Pad: 39B
Launched: January 13, 1993, 8:59:30 a.m. EST
Landing Site: Kennedy Space Center, Florida
Landing: January 19, 1993, 8:37:49 a.m. EST
Runway: 33
Rollout Distance: 8,724 feet
Rollout Time: 49 seconds
Revolution: 96
Mission Duration: 5 days 23 hours 38 minutes 19 seconds
Orbit Altitude: 165 nautical miles
Orbit Inclination: 28.45 degrees


John H. Casper, Commander
Donald R. McMonagle, Pilot
Mario Runco, Jr., Mission Specialist
Gregory J. Harbaugh, Mission Specialist
Susan J. Helms, Mission Specialist

Mission Highlights

The primary payload was the fifth Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-F) which was deployed on day one of the mission. It was later successfully transferred to its proper orbit by the Inertial Upper Stage booster.

Also carried into orbit in the payload bay was a Hitchhiker experiment called the Diffuse X-ray Spectrometer (DXS). This instrument collected data on X-ray radiation from diffuse sources in deep space.

Other middeck payloads to test the effects of microgravity included the Commercial General Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGPA) for-life sciences research; the Chromosome and Plant Cell Division in Space Experiment (CHROMEX) to-study plant growth; the Physiological and Anatomical Rodent Experiment (PARE) to examine the skeletal system and the adaptation of bone to space flight; the Space Acceleration Measurement Equipment (SAMS) to measure and record the microgravity acceleration environment of middeck experiments; and the Solid Surface Combustion Experiment (SSCE) to measure the rate of flame spread and temperature of burning filter paper.

Also, on day five, mission specialists Mario Runco and Greg Harbaugh spent nearly 5 hours in the open cargo bay performing a series of space-walking tasks designed to increase NASA’s knowledge of working in space. They tested their abilities to move about freely in the cargo bay, climb into foot restraints without using their hands and simulated carrying large objects in the microgravity environment.

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