- Columbia (19)
- Pad 39-B (36)
- 75th Shuttle Mission
- 19th Flight OV-102
- KSC Landing (29)
- Andrew M. Allen (3), Commander
- Scott J. Horowitz (1), Pilot
- Franklin R. Chang-Diaz (5), Payload Commander
- Maurizio Cheli (1), Mission Specialist
- Jeffrey A. Hoffman (5), Mission Specialist
- Claude Nicollier (3), Mission Specialist
- Umberto Guidoni (1), Payload Specialist (Italy)
- OPF -- Nov 05, 1995
- VAB -- Jan 23, 1996
- PAD -- Jan 29, 1996
- FRR -- Feb 09, 1996
- TSS-1R, USMP-03 (SAMS, MEPHISTO, AADSF, ZENO, IDGE), OARE,
CPCG, MGBX (CSD, FFFT, RITSI)
- The primary objective of STS-75 is to carry the
Tethered Satellite System Reflight
(TSS-1R) into orbit and to deploy
it spaceward on a conducting tether. The mission will also fly the
United States Microgravity Payload
(USMP-3) designed to investigate
materials science and condensed matter physics.
- The TSS-1R mission is a reflight of
TSS-1 which was flown onboard
Space Shuttle Atlantis on
STS-46 in July/August of 1992. During that
flight, the tether was deployed a distance of 860 feet.
mission scientist hope to deploy the tether to a distance of over 12
- The Tether Satellite System will circle the
Earth at an altitude
of 296 kilometers which will place the tether system within the
rarefied electrically charged layer of the atmosphere known as the
ionosphere. The conducting tether will generate high voltage and
electrical currents as it moves through the ionosphere across
the magnetic field lines of the earth. Scientists will be able
to learn more about the electrodynamics of a conducting tether
system to deepen our understanding of physical processes in the
near-Earth space environment. These studies will help provide
explanations for events such as the formation and behavior of
comet tails and bursts of radio "noise" detected from other
- The specific TSS1-R mission objectives are: characterize the
current-voltage response of the TSS-orbiter system, characterize
the satellites high-voltage sheath structure and current collection
process, demonstrate electric power generation, verify tether
control laws and basic tether dynamics, demonstrate the effect
of neutral gas on the plasma sheath and current collection, characterize
the TSS radio frequency and plasma wave emissions and characterize the
TSS dynamic-electrodynamic coupling.
- TSS-1R Science Investigations include: TSS Deployer Core Equipment
and Satellite Core Equipment (DCORE/SCORE), Research on Orbital Plasma
Electrodynamics (ROPE), Research on Electrodynamic Tether Effects
Magnetic Field Experiment for TSS Missions
(TEMAG), Shuttle Electrodynamic
Tether System (SETS), Shuttle Potential and Return Electron Experiment
(SPREE), Tether Optical Phenomena Experiment
(TOP), Investigation of
Electromagnetic Emissions by the Electrodynamic Tether
at the Earth's Surface of Electromagnetic
Emissions by TSS
Investigation and Measurement of Dynamic Noise in the TSS
and Experimental Investigation of TSS Dynamics
(TEID) and the Theory
and Modeling in Support of Tethered Satellite Applications
- The USMP-3 payload consists of four major experiments mounted on two
Mission Peculiar Experiment Support Structures
(MPESS) and three Shuttle
Mid-deck experiments. The experiments are: Advanced Automated
Directional Solidification Furnace
(AADSF), Material pour l'Etude des
Phenomenes Interessant la Solidification sur Terre et en Orbite
Space Acceleration Measurement System (SAMS), Orbital Acceleration
Research Experiment (OARE), Critical Fluid Light Scattering Experiment
(ZENO) and Isothermal Dendritic Growth Experiment
- Launch February 22, 1996 3:18:00.061 pm EST. Launch window was
2 hours 30 min. There were no unscheduled holds. Winds at liftoff
were from approximately 63.4 degrees at 5.76 knots. Ambient temperature
was 72.8 F, barometric pressure was 29.94in Hg and relative humidity
was at 78%.
- About four seconds after liftoff, Shuttle Commander
reported that his instruments showed that one of the shuttle main
engines was operating at only 45% of its normal power level. Flight
controllers in Houston quickly responded that all engines were
performing nominally. The engines throttled as expected about 1
minute into the launch, and operated normally all the way to main
engine cutoff at 8 and a half minutes into the flight. Engineers will
look at data from the launch to try to understand the faulty reading.
( Reference STS-75 MCC Status Report # 01)
On Tuesday, 2/20/96, the mission management team met briefly to
discuss an incident that occurred overnight at Pad 39B. At about 1
a.m., a neutralizing agent, believed to be sodium hydroxide was
spilled over the left-hand solid rocket booster and the left side of
This non-toxic liquid is used to neutralize any
potential hazardous vapors that may be present during normal
operations to remove covers off the
reaction control system thrusters
on Columbia. The incident has not
seriously delayed the launch
countdown. However, engineering evaluations are in work to determine
if any concerns exist for the liquid contacting the flight hardware.
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/21/1996).
- The countdown started at 4pm EST at the T-minus 43 hour mark on
Monday, 2/19/96 and the
payload bay doors were closed.
crew arrived at the Shuttle Landing Facility at 3:30pm EST.
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/20/1996).
- On Tuesday, 2/13/96, a faulty wire to one of the pyrotechnic devices
located between the
orbiter and external
tank was replaced and tested successfully. Also, problems with the
crew hatch were resolved and final testing was successful.
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/13/1996).
- On Friday, 2/9/96, Hypergolic loading operations took place and the
Flight Readiness Review (FRR) was conducted. The countdown is scheduled
to begin on February 19.
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/09/1996).
- On Friday, 2/2/96, work continued to remove and replace the high
pressure fuel turbo pump from main engine number 1. The new pump
was installed and electrical hookup started. The Terminal Countdown
Demonstration Test was also concluded.
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 2/02/1996).
- On 1/29/96, the Shuttle
Columbia was transferred to Pad 39B from the
Vehicle Assembly Building. First motion occurred at 2:33 a.m. The
vehicle was hard down on the pad at about 9:30 a.m.
Later that evening,
the three auxiliary
power units (APU)
were to be hot fired. After that,
workers will start the week long process to remove and replace the
high pressure fuel turbo pump from Space Shuttle Main Engine
(SSME) No. 1.
- On 1/23/96,
Columbia was transferred to the
Vehicle Assembly Building
with first motion occurring at 10:45 p.m.
From there it was lifted and
mated with external tank.
The Shuttle interface verification test
was scheduled for 1/26/96.
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 1/24/1996).
- On 11/27/95, work began on the removal and replacement of Window
No. 6. The three main engines have been removed. The forward
reaction control system removed on Tuesday 11/28/95 and the freon
coolant loop No. 1 deserviced. Testing was started on the Ku-band
antenna. In the Operations and Checkout building
work on the
the STS-75 payloads, Tethered
Satellite and USMP-3, has been going
smoothly and is nearing completion. They will be in preparation for
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 11/27/1995).
- Altitude: 160 nm (184 statute miles)
- Inclination: 28.45 degrees
- Orbits: 251
- Duration: 15 days, 17 hours, 41 minutes, 25 seconds.
- Distance: 6.5 million miles
- SRB: BI-078
- SRM: 360W053A(left),360W053B(right)
- ET : SN-76
- MLP : 3
- SSME-1: SN-2029
- SSME-2: SN-2034
- SSME-3: SN-2017
- KSC Saturday, March 9, 1996 at 8:58:38 a.m EST, SLF
Landing times: Main gear touchdown at MET 15days 17hours
40min 21sec, or 8:58:21 am EST. Nose gear touchdown at MET 15days
17hours 40min 36sec, or 8:58:36 EST. Wheels stop at 15days 17hours
41min 25 sec or 8:59:25am EST.
(Reference KSC Shuttle Status 3/09/1995).
- The first KSC landing opportunity for Saturday, March 9, 1996 was
waived off due to cloud cover at KSC. This would have required a
deorbit burn at 6:23am EST, with a landing at 7:24am EST. A "go" was
given by Mission Control for the
deorbit burn at 7:46am EST to support
the 2nd KSC opportunity.
Deorbit burn at MET:
15d16h37m43s on orbit
251 at 7:56am EST.
- In the event of unacceptable weather at KSC, the shuttle would have
landed during one of 3 landing opportunities at Edwards AFB. The
first opportunity would have been
on orbit 252 with a 9:25am EST
deorbit burn leading to a landing at 10:26am EST (7:26am Dryden time).
- On 3/9/96, flight controllers opted to forego KSC landing
opportunities at 7:16 a.m., 8:52 am EST and 10:27 on because of
forecast low clouds and the possibility of rain and gusty winds.
Weather conditions did not inprove and at 9:25am EST, mission
controllers waived off KSC's final landing opportunity for 3/8/96.
( Reference STS-75 MCC Status Report # 28)
Last Mission STS-72
Next Mission STS-76
- About four seconds after liftoff, instruments showed that one
Space Shuttle Main Engine
(SSME) was operating at only 45% of normal
power. It was quickly determined that the problem was in the
instrumentation and not in the engine. Over the next few days, the TSS-1R and
USMP-3 payloads were powered up and prepared for
science operations. Problems were noted with a payload interface
device known as a "Smart Flex". The deployment of the TSS satellite
was delayed 24 hours to perform additional testing on the device. On
Flight Day 4 (2/25/95), deploy operations began at 2:45pm CST. At
approximately 7:30pm CST, after
TSS-1R had deployed 19.7km of tether and
had almost reached full deployment, the tether broke.
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