STS -35 (English Space Transportation System) is a mission name for the U.S. Space Shuttle Columbia ( OV -102) from NASA. The launch took place on 2 December 1990. It was the 38th Space Shuttle mission and the tenth flight of the Space Shuttle Columbia.

The mission should be carried out in March 1986 by the Columbia under the name STS -61 -E, has been suspended due to the Challenger disaster.


  • Vance Brand (4th space flight), Commander
  • Guy Gardner ( second space flight), Pilot
  • Jeffrey Hoffman ( second space flight), Mission Specialist
  • John Lounge ( third space flight), Mission Specialist
  • Robert Parker ( 2nd space flight), Mission Specialist
  • Samuel Durrance ( first space flight), Payload Specialist, Johns Hopkins University
  • Ronald Parise ( first space flight), Payload Specialist, Computer Sciences Corporation

Backup crew

  • Kenneth Nordsieck and John Bartoe for Durrance and Parise

During STS -61- D Richard Richards and David Leestma should fly with. They were replaced by Gardner and lounge.

As commander Jon Andrew McBride was originally assigned. However, he left NASA in May 1989 and was replaced by Vance Brand. Fire therefore came to his fourth space flight and was almost 60 years the hitherto oldest man in space. This record was broken in 1996 by the 61 -year-old Story Musgrave.

Mission overview

The tenth flight of the space shuttle Columbia was supposed to begin after original plans on 16 May 1990. Due to an error in the cooling system of the orbiter the start but was first postponed to 30 May. When fueling for the start, it was found, however, that there were two major leaks in the outer tank, which could not be repaired at the launch pad, so the shuttle was rolled back to the Vehicle Assembly Building ( VAB). Therefore, and because of some other problems that arose as a consequence, the start was delayed by a few months, more than any other shuttle flight before. This delay meant that the flight STS -41 Space Shuttle Discovery was conducted prior to STS -35. It was another first in the Shuttle history, for the first time two shuttles were on the launch pad at the same time.

The Columbia finally lifted on December 2, on mission STS -35 from. The main objective of the mission were astronomical observations with the instruments of the ASTRO -1 platform in the UV and X-rays. The ASTRO -1 unit was carried in the payload bay and contained the following instruments:

During the mission, there were some technical problems, so functioned as the display for aligning the ASTRO -1 telescopes not. The telescopes therefore had to be controlled from Earth. However, the scientific objectives could still be achieved at around 70 percent.

The landing of the Columbia took place on December 11 at Edwards Air Force Base, ten days later, the Columbia was returned to KSC.