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STS062-S-001 (October 1993) --- The crew patch depicts the world's first reusable spacecraft on its sixteenth flight. The space shuttle Columbia is in its entry-interface attitude as it prepares to return to Earth. The primary mission objectives of STS-62 include the United States Microgravity Payload (USMP-2) and the NASA Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology (OAST-2) payloads. These payloads represent a multifaceted array of space science and engineering experiments. The varied hues of the rainbow on the horizon connote the varied, but complementary, nature of all the payloads united on this mission. The upward-pointing vector shape of the patch is symbolic of America's reach for excellence in its in its unswerving pursuit to explore the frontiers of space. The brilliant sunrise just beyond Columbia suggests the promise that research in space holds for the hopes and dreams of future generations. The STS-62 insignia was designed by Mark Pestana.    The NASA insignia design for space shuttle flights is reserved for use by the astronauts and for other official use as the NASA Administrator may authorize. Public availability has been approved only in the forms of illustrations by the various news media. When and if there is any change in this policy, which is not anticipated, the change will be publicly announced. Photo credit: NASA


Occurred 30 years ago

Primary payloads were U.S. Microgravity Payload-2 (USMP- 2) and Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology-2 (OAST- 2).



mission duration

13 days, 23 hours, 16 minutes


March 4, 1994


March 18, 1994
Four men and one woman in orange spacesuits pose for crew photo in front of American flag.
Astronauts included in the STS-62 crew portrait include (standing left to right) mission specialists Charles D. Gemar, Marsha S. Ivins, and Pierre J. Thuot. Seated left to right are Andrew M. Allen, pilot; and John H. Casper, commander. Launched aboard the Space Shuttle Columbia on March 4, 1994 at 8:53:00 am (EST), the STS-62 mission carried two primary payloads; the U.S Microgravity Payload-2 (USMP-2) and the Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology-2 (OAST-2).

STS-62 Mission Facts

Mission: USMP-2; OAST-2
Space Shuttle: Columbia
Launch Pad: 39B
Launch Weight: 4,519,319 pounds
Launched: March 4, 1994; 8:53:00 a.m. EST
Landing Site: Kennedy Space Center, Florida
Landing: March 18, 1994 at 8:09:41 a.m. EST
Runway: 33
Rollout Distance: 10,151 feet
Rollout Time: 55 seconds
Revolution: 224
Mission Duration: 13 days, 23 hours, 16 minutes, 41 seconds
Orbit Altitude: 163 nautical miles
Orbit Inclination: 39 degrees
Miles Traveled: 5.8 million


John H. Casper, Commander
Andrew M. Allen, Pilot
Pierre J. Thuot, Mission Specialist
Charles D. Gemar, Mission Specialist
Marsha S. Ivins, Mission Specialist

Launch Highlights

The launch originally set for March 3 was postponed at the T-11 hour mark due to predicted unfavorable weather in the KSC area. The countdown March 4 proceeded smoothly. The only deviation to normal operating procedures was a delay in deploying the solid rocket booster recovery ships because of high seas. Recovery ships left port on launch day, and recovered the boosters and their parachutes on March 6.

Mission Highlights

Primary payloads were U.S. Microgravity Payload-2 (USMP- 2) and Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology-2 (OAST- 2). USMP-2 included five experiments investigating materials processing and crystal growth in microgravity, while OAST-2 featured six experiments focusing on space technology and spaceflight. Both payloads were located in the payload bay, activated by crew and operated by teams on the ground. USMP-2 experiments received emphasis at beginning of flight; later in mission Columbia’s orbit lowered about 20 nautical miles to facilitate OAST-2 experiments.

Crew worked with experiments located both in middeck and payload bay. These included Dexterous End Effector (DEE), a new magnetic end effector and grapple fixture design being tested for use on remote manipulator system arm; Shuttle Solar Backscatter Ultraviolet/A (SSBUV/A) and Limited Duration Space Environment Candidate Material Exposure (LDCE), all in payload bay. Middeck experiments were Advanced Protein Crystal Growth; Physiological Systems Experiment (PSE); Commercial Protein Crystal Growth (CPCG); Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA); Middeck 0- Gravity Dynamics Experiment (MODE); Bioreactor Demonstration Systems (BDS); Auroral Photography Experiment (APE-B). Air Force Maui Optical Site Calibration Test (AMOS) requires no onboard hardware.

Crew also conducted number of biomedical activities aimed at better understanding and countering effects of prolonged spaceflight.

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