STS -87 (English Space Transportation System) is the designation for a flight mission of the U.S. Space Shuttle Columbia ( OV -102) from NASA. The launch took place on 19 November 1997. It was the 88th Space Shuttle mission and the 24th flight of the Space Shuttle Columbia.


Home team

  • Kevin Kregel ( third space flight), Commander
  • Steven Lindsey ( first space flight), Pilot
  • Winston Scott ( second space flight), Mission Specialist
  • Kalpana Chawla (1st space flight ), Mission Specialist
  • Takao Doi ( first space flight), Mission Specialist ( NASDA / Japan)
  • Leonid Kadenjuk ( first space flight), Payload Specialist ( NSAU / Ukraine)


  • Jaroslaw Pustowui for Kadenjuk

Mission Description

On Spacelab pallets and Get Away Specials most equipments of the U.S. Mission to the fourth research of effects under microgravity (U.S. Microgravity Payload 4) were housed. The experiments conducted in the areas of materials research, atmospheric research, technology and biology. During the mission, the astrophysical research platform Spartan also should be 201-04 suspended for several days. You should investigate the heat transport in the corona and the acceleration of the solar wind with the help of optical instruments. However, shortly after exposure, there was a malfunction that brought the satellite into a tailspin. In an exit maneuver on 25 November ( 7:43 hours) were able to capture the half -ton research platform and transported by means of the manipulator arm back into the hold Scott and Doi.

Scientific research material related to not only the preparation of crystals of bismuth and zinc in a special furnace with multiple temperature zones. In this way, very large crystals grow in one direction. Investigations were conducted solidification temperature, velocity and the shape of the solidification front. In addition, the wetting solids with immiscible liquids was tested in a glove box, the characteristics of encapsulated flame researched and observes the behavior of insoluble ceramic particles in liquid metal alloys.

Technical testing related to a sodium-sulfur battery that provides up to 40 amp -hours of electricity emits at 350 ° C ( liquid electrodes of sodium and sulfur with a ceramic electrolyte ), and a heat transfer unit (Loop Heat Pipe LHP ), in which no pumps, just by capillary ammonia vapor heat in flexible plastic tubes can be transported over several meters. Furthermore, it was first used a free-flying camera platform that was controlled remotely from the shuttle out. My drive was working with compressed gas. To be protected against impact, the camera platform was encased in shock-absorbing material. In a second exit on December 3 ( 5:00 hours), the astronauts Scott and Doi tested five new devices ( Extravehicular Mobility Unit EMU ). They facilitate work outside spacecraft. It is a special mount, two transport systems and two devices for temperature regulation.

Atmosphere research has been conducted with the experiment Solse ( Shuttle Ozone Limb Sounding Experiment). Here, the height distribution, and the behavior of atmospheric ozone has been studied. More ozone measurements were made automatically in a gas container ( Get Away Special). A spectrometer, a camera, and the ultraviolet radiation in the range of 200 to 400 nanometers was recorded. From these values ​​, the ozone concentration can be determined very accurately.

In another Get Away Special fundamental studies on the behavior of gas flames in microgravity were performed. Due to a failure mechanism was interrupted at frequencies of 2.5 Hz, 5.0 Hz and 7.5 Hz, the uniformity of the flames.

A guest from Ukraine experiment dealt with the growth of plant roots in a special autonomous unit. These plants can automatically feed up to 30 days. For this purpose, it is equipped with a control system, an air regulator, a nutrient and a fluorescent lamp. In the Plant Growth Facility ( PGF ) beet plants were grown (Brassica rapa ).

In order to determine the influence of low forces on the individual experiments, accelerometers were used. In complex OARE the braking forces were measured by the residual atmosphere in the altitude of 250 kilometers. Contrast SAMS notes the brief accelerations caused by movements of the astronauts and various equipment. SAMS has three sensor heads, which are movably arranged in a respective direction. About small solenoid coils, sensors are moved back after a brief excursion into its zero position. The required current is a measure of the acceleration occurring forces. During the sixteen day mission, the power supply was ensured by an EDO pallet. In it, camped 390 kg of liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen 1717 kg. In fuel cells, the two substances combine to form water while releasing energy.

The Columbia landed after a successful flight at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.