Years Of Rocket Missions

I belive I can fly




February 11, 2000 - Space Shuttle Endeavour lifts off to carry out the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission, cosponsored by NASA and the National Imagery and Mapping Agency. A large radar antenna in the payload bay and a smaller element deployed on a 60-meter boom work together in the synthetic-aperture mode to produce the effect of a much larger antenna. The mission produces a three-dimensional map of about 80% of the world's landmass. Author:Randy Culp


February 14, 2000 - NEAR (Near Earth Asteroid Rendezvous) probe settles into orbit around the asteroid 433 Eros, producing a series of stunning close-up images. Ground controllers start tightening its orbit for an eventual soft impact with the tumbling, potato-shaped asteroid. Author:Randy Culp


April 4, 2000 - Soyuz TM30 lifts off on a return mission to Mir, reversing Russia's actions of the previous year to shut the space station down. The idea is to re-open the space station for commercial operations, including a Mir version of the Survivor TV show. The cosmonauts remain until mid-June, and two Progress freighters are flown up (one in April, one in October) before financial support disappears and the venture falls through. Author:Randy Culp


May 19, 2000 - Space Shuttle Atlantis lifts off for the International Space Station for maintenance on the crane and a faulty antenna, installation of a Russian boom arm, handrails and upgrades to the ventilation system, and delivery of new batteries, supplies and equipment. Author:Randy Culp


July 12, 2000 - the Zvezda service module for the International Space Station (ISS) is launched from Russia on a Proton rocket. The automated docking of this unit with the first linked pair of modules already in orbit - Zarya and Unity - allows the U.S. to start a series of space shuttle launches to add American-built components, which will be followed by laboratory modules from Europe and Japan. Zvezda will act as the control center and living quarters for the initial space station crews. Author:Randy Culp


2000 Sep 20, The space shuttle Atlantis returned after hauling in 3 tons of equipment for the int’l. space station.


October 11, 2000 - Space Shuttle Discovery lifts off on a 14-day mission to install the Z1 segment, the first piece of the space station truss, and a third docking port (PMA-3) for the Unity adapter. They also test the new 'SAFER' spacesuit backpack propulsion units. Author:Randy Culp


October 31, 2000 - the Expedition One crew is launched on a Soyuz transport to become the first crew of the ISS. Author:Randy Culp


January 9, 2001 - the first launch of the "true" millenium is Chinese, with the second test flight of the manned Shenshou spaceship, reported to be carrying a monkey, a dog, and a rabbit. Author:Randy Culp


2001 Apr 28, A Russian Soyuz rocket lifted off for the Int’l. Space Station with Dennis Tito (60), who paid some $20 million, for the experience. Tito was the founder of the Wilshire Associates investment firm.