STS -32 (English Space Transportation System) is a mission name for the U.S. Space Shuttle Columbia ( OV -102) from NASA. The launch took place on 9 January 1990. It was the 33rd Space Shuttle mission and the ninth flight of the Space Shuttle Columbia.


  • Daniel Brandenstein ( third space flight), Commander
  • James Wetherbee ( first space flight), Pilot
  • Bonnie Dunbar ( second space flight ), Mission Specialist
  • David Low ( first space flight), Mission Specialist
  • Marsha Ivins ( first space flight ), Mission Specialist

Mission overview

The Space Shuttle Mission 33 began on January 9, 1990 at 12:35 UTC. This was the first launch from Launch Pad 39A since the disaster of the space shuttle Challenger in January 1986. Since then, some changes have been made to the launch pad to increase the safety of the crew. The launch was originally scheduled for December 18, 1989, but was delayed for about three weeks, because the final work and tests could be carried out on the ramp with delay.

The aim of the mission was the military communications satellite SYNCOM IV -F5 suspend (also known as LEASAT 5) and the Long Duration Exposure Facility ( LDEF ) NASA capture with the help of the robot arm and return to Earth. This experimental platform was Founded in April 1984 in orbit and contained more than 50 experiments. Actually, the LDEF should have performed only a ten -month flight, but by the Challenger accident and the resulting delays in shuttle program, the platform remained for five years in space.

The mission objectives were successfully met by the crew, the landing took place on January 20 at Edwards AFB, California. The Columbia was transported back later by a special aircraft, a converted 747-100 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, to Cape Canaveral, Florida. The 747-100 with the Columbia landed on January 26 at 21:30 UTC on the runway at the Kennedy Space Center.