• Space Shuttle was a partially reusable low Earth
• Operated by NASA.
• The Space Shuttle was the most complex space
vehicle design of its time.
• Launched from the Kennedy Space Center
(KSC) in Florida.
• Its official program name was Space
Transportation System (STS).
• Total of 135 missions from 1981 to 2011.
• Launched numerous satellites, interplanetary
probes, and the Hubble Space Telescope, also
participated in construction and servicing of the
International Space Station.
• Total flight duration: 1322 days, 19 hours, 21 minutes
and 23 seconds.
• Total 6 orbiters: Enterprise, Columbia, Challenger,
Discovery, Atlantis and Endeavour.
• Challenger and Columbia were destroyed in
mission accidents in 1986 and 2003.
• Height 56.1 m
• Diameter 8.7 m
• Mass 2030 tones
• Crew 7 (max)
• Payload to LEO 24 400 kg
• Payload to GTO 3810 kg
• Payload to Polar orbit 12 700 kg
• Payload to Landing 14 400 kg
• The orbiter resembles a conventional aircraft.
• Carries Astronauts and payloads
• Space Shuttle Main Engines are mounted on the
• Made from Aluminum alloy.
• Length: 37.237 m
• Height: 17.25 m
• Empty weight: 78 000 kg
• Maximum payload capacity : 25 000 kg
• Operational altitude: 190 to 960 km
• Average Speed: 7.743 km/s
• EXTERNAL TANK
• One External Tank
• The main function of the external tank was to supply
the LOX and LH fuel to the main engines
• The external tank was the only part of the Shuttle
system that was not reused
• The External Tank contains two internal tanks—one
for the storage of LOX and the other for the storage
• Length: 46.9 m
• Diameter: 8.4 m
• Propellant volume: 2025 m3
A Space Shuttle External Tank (ET)on its way to the Vehicle Assembly Building
• SOLID ROCKET BOOSTERS (SRB)
• 2 Solid Rocket Boosters
• Length: 45.46 m
• Diameter: 3.71 m
• Empty weight (each): 68 000 kg
• Thrust (by each): 12.5 MN
• Burn time: 124 s
• Provide 83% of the total thrust at liftoff.
• Fuel: Solid Fuel(Ammonium perchlorate propellant)
• A typical shuttle mission lasts seven to eight days,
but can extend to as much as 14 days depending
upon the objectives of the mission.
• A typical shuttle mission is as follows:
• 1. Getting into orbit
o 1.1 Launch
o 1.2 Ascent.
o 1.3 Orbital maneuvering burn.
• 2. Orbital life in space.
• 3. Re-entry.
• 4. Landing.
• GETTING INTO ORBIT (Launch Sequence)
• Launched from Kennedy Space Center
• T minus 31sec: Onboard computers take over the
• T minus16 sec: Sound suppression water system
• T minus 6.6 sec: The shuttle's main engines ignites
• T minus 3 sec: Shuttle main engines are in liftoff
• T minus 0 sec: SRBs are ignited and the shuttle lifts
• T plus 20 sec: The shuttle begin a combined roll,
pitch and yaw maneuver to oriented the vehicle
to correct orbit
• T plus 60 sec: Shuttle engines are at maximum
• T plus 2 min: SRBs separate from the orbiter at an
altitude of 45 km. Parachutes deploy from the SRBs.
SRBs will land in the ocean
• T plus 8.5 min: Main engines shut down.
• T plus 9 min: ET separates from the orbiter. The ET
will burn up upon reentry.
• T plus 10.5 min: OMS engines fire to place orbiter in
• ORBITAL LIFE IN SPACE
• Shuttle usually flew at an altitude of 320 kilometers
• During 1980s and 1990s, many flights targeted on
missions to the NASA/ESA Spacelab
• During1990s and 2000s the focus shifted more in
building the space station and satellite launches.
• From 2001 to 2011 missions were intended to launch
astronaut to ISS and to service them.
RE-ENTRY AND LANDING
• Usually Performed under computer control.
• However, the re-entry could be flown entirely
manually if an emergency arose.
• Begin re-entry by firing its OMS engines.
• Orbiter flies in the opposite direction to orbital
motion for approximately three minutes
• This will lower shuttles orbit down into the upper
• Vehicle enters upper atmosphere at around Mach
25 at a 40-degree nose-up attitude, producing high
• Atmospheric friction produce a temperature of
about 1650 °C during re-entry
• This high temperature will heat up the orbiter
• The Space Shuttle Thermal Protection System
protect the shuttle from this high temperature
• The heat shield is made mainly from Silica
• By the end of the flight the orbiter reaches lower
• The shuttle now glide through the atmosphere like a
• The vehicle level its wings, lower its nose and began
its approach to the landing site
• Approach and landing phase begin when the
orbiter was at about 3000 m altitude and 12 km
from the runway
• The pilots apply aerodynamic braking to help slow
down the vehicle.
• Orbiter's speed is reduced from 682 to 346 km/h
• The landing gears were deployed while the Orbiter
is flying at 430 km/h
• To assist the speed brake a 12 m drag chute is
• The chute was jettisoned once the orbiter slowed to
• Finally the orbiter comes to a Stop.
• Space Shuttle was a partially reusable low Earth
• Commissioned and operated by NASA from 1981 to
• It was the most complex machine built at its time
• There were a total of 6 Orbital Vehicles build by
• A total of 14 astronauts were lost in space due to
space shuttle disaster including Indian astronaut
Space Shuttle - A future Space Transportation System
 Kyle, Ed. "STS Data Sheet". spacelaunchreport.com.
Retrieved July 2014.
 Space Shuttle Propulsion Systems, p. 153. NASA, June 26,
 Jenkins, Dennis R. (2006). Space Shuttle: The History of the
National Space Transportation System. Voyageur Press. ISBN 0-
 "INTRODUCTION TO FUTURE LAUNCH VEHICLE
PLANS [1963–2001] Updated 6/15/2001, by Marcus Lindroos".
Pmview.com. June 15, 2001. Retrieved 2012-04-17.