Category Book of Flight

Amelia Earhart

ELIA Earhart was the most lam oils woman pilot of her time. Adventurous and fearless, she pushed herself to the limits, setting many new records. On May 20, 1932, five years to the day after Lindbergh’s Atlantic crossing, Amelia took oil to fly solo across the Atlantic. In her bright rec Lockheed Vega, she left Newfoundland and landed nearly 15 hours later in Londonderry, Ireland. During the trip, her altimeter, which measured her altitude, failed. She encountered violent storms, icing on her wings, and a sudden downward drop ot 3,000 leet! Yet she managed to pull the plane up, and never lost hei nerve. She became the first woman to make the solo crossing.

Подпись: PROUD PILOT Amelia Earhart poses happily with her new Lockheed Electra 10E kabove).ln this plane, she attempted a round-the-world flight that ended with her disappearance in 1937. At left, fans greet Amelia in Ireland after he: flight across the Atlantic in her red Lockheed Vega in 1932.

In 1957, Amelia took off with a navigator for her most ambitious goal—a round-the-world flight in her new Lockheed Llectra. Flying back home over the Pacific, the Electra mysteriously disappeared. No trace ol Amelia, her navigator, or her plane was ever found.

"Please know l am quit’s aware of the hazard*. 1 want to do it beeauoe I want to do it. Wo nun /пи, tt try to do thing, і а, і men hare tried. ”

-Amelia Earhart

Подпись: HISTORY FACT: MYSTERIOUS LOSSПодпись: FUN FACT: HONORED FLIERПодпись: Amelia Earhart was showered with honors for her solo Atlantic flight.She received many awards, including the Distinguished Flying Cross and the National Geographic Society's Special Gold Medal.image106

+ Flying Superstar

Thousands of admirers flock around Amelia after her landing in Oakland, California, m 1935 in another Vega. She had just made the first solo flight from Hawaii to the mainland arid was a worldwide celebrity.

When Amelia’s plane vanished over the Pacific in 1937, a huge search by ships and aircraft failed to find her. No one knows her fate. Yet many experts think she lost her way, ran out of fuel, and crashed into the ocean.

* Flight (heck

Before her round-the-world flight, Amelia takes a final look at the Electra with mechanics. After her flight, she planned to use the Electra as a "flying laboratory" for aviation research.

► Famous Airplane

Amelia’s red Vega is today in the National Air and Space Museum. One of the most advanced planes of its time, the Vega had a streamlined wood fuselage, molded plywood "skin," and internally braced wings.

Amelia Earhart

Airmail Pilots

Rugged airma’I pilots (top) pose for a January 1922 portrait. For warmth, they wore two pairs of socks, underwear, and gloves, as well as sweaters, fur-l’ned suits, and scarves. So bundled up, many had to be lifted into their cockpits.


The Douglas M-2 was an early a’rmail plane. It flew from Los Angeles to Salt .ake City from 1926 to 1930. Mannequins represent the pilot and mai1 workers in this Museum display. Occasionally, a passenger would squeeze in to ride with the mail.


Via Airmail

Early advertisements and a shipping label from the Museum collection promote airmail service in the 1920s and 1930s.


Fun Facts: Getting There


Early mail pilots had to find their own way and plot their own routes. They had no navigational tools, but simply looked down to spot landmarks and follow rivers, roads, or railroad tracks.



Подпись: FUN FACT: FLYING PETSПодпись: Цimage109image110

► Ford Tri-Motor

Ihe Ford Tri Motor, made by Henry Ford in 1926, was a popular early airliner. Noisy but reliable, it seated 13 passengers. Its all-metal body and three engines made people feel safer. It was known as the "Tin Goose."

Boeing 21,7В

First built in 1934, the Boeing 247D was used by United Airlines Sleek and comfortable, it cruised at 189 miles an hour. Now in the Museum, this plane was flown in the 1934 London-to-Melbourne MacRobertson Air Race (see map above). It came in third.

◄ Racing Star

Roscoe Turner, the most famous and colorful racing pilot of the 1930s, shows off his pet lion, Gilmore. Gilmore often flew along with Turner. In 1934,Turner piloted the Boeing 247D airliner above in the MacRobertson Race.

Many early pilots flew with unusual pets. One pilot had a 109-pound black Idaho wolf named "Ace." Another had a squirrel that loved to fly. It rode in the pilot’s top coat pocket or dung to his scarf.

Подпись: Air Transport
image111"Подпись: s:image112RLY passenger flights of the 1920s were rough. Planes had no heat or air conditioning. They were not pressurized and usually could not fly over storms. They pitched and bucked in turbulence, and passengers were very airsick.

In 1930, the first stewardesses, all nurses, were hired. Among the first rules they had to learn was: make sure passengers who want to use the restroom don’t walk out the exit door!

Commercial air transportation grew rapidly during the 1930s and early 1940s. 1 he Boeing 247D was the first modern airliner, with comfortable seats and air conditioning. Yet it could only seat 10 passengers. Many airlines asked builders to design a bigger plane.

The result was the Douglas DC-3, which began service in 1936. It could seat up to 32 passengers, hast, comlortable, and dependable, the DC-3 was the tirst passenger aircraft to make a profit without carrying mail. By 1939, ninety percent of airline passengers worldwide were flown in DC-3s.

¥ Flight Attendants

image113"United Airlines stewardesses pose with a Boeing 247D. First serving as nurses, stewardesses later served meals and kept passengers safe and comfortable. These stewardess airline wings and identification badge are from the

image114Worldwide Travel

Подпись: COMFORTABLE RIDE In an American Airlines DC-7 of the 1940s, passengers enjoy chatting and relaxing in the plane's spacious Sky Lounge. image115"The Douglas DC-3 (above) became the world’s most successful airliner, flying cheaper, safer, and faster than competitors. Over 1,000 are still flying. By the 1930s, planes were taking people around the globe, as shown in these Museum advertisements.

In the Pilot’s Seat

A pilot and co-pilot sit at the controls of a DC-3.The cockpit had two sets of instruments and an autopilot. Pilots said the DC-3 handled so easily, it practically flew itself. The plane couid reach speeds up to 230 miles an hour.

He Glass Cockpit

THIS is the space shuttle cockpit, located on the flight deck. It is the main control area of the spacecraft. In this picture, the seats have been removed. Two spaces for seats face the orbiter’s front windows. The mission commander sits on the left and the pilot on the right. Either one can control the craft from his seat. Flying the shuttle requires a vast array ol instruments. Over 2,100 different controls line the cockpit. I he new shuttle cockpit has more computer screens, and so it is called the “glass cockpit.”

The flight deck and rest ol the crew cabin are pressurized so the crew do not need space suits once in orbit. They float around in weightlessness, often called "zero G,” inside the cabin, from the flight deck, the crew can control other parts ol the spacecraft. They can open and close the payload, or cargo, bay doors. They can move the shuttle’s big robot arm to grasp and retrieve objects such as communications satellites in space. The shuttle’s movements can be I controlled manually by the crew and also

by Mission Control in Houston.


In Command

image233Подпись: FUN FACT: MOM INSTRUMENTSПодпись: The space shuttle cockpit has more than three times the number of instruments and controls required by the Apollo command modules that traveled to the Moon.Mission commander Dominic LGone sits at the controls of the shuttle Endeavour during a 1999 mission. The pilot’s seat is on his right. The shuttle can also be controlled by a sophisticated autopilot that can react thousands of times faster than a human.

У Control Center

Inside the cockpit of the shuttle Columh a, instrument switches and other controls cover the walls. The complex system can be operated by a single astronaut. Closed circuit TV monitors give the crew live pictures of activities m the ship and outside.


History Fact: Shuttle Fleet


Today, a fleet of four shuttles operates:

Columbio, Discovery, Atlontis, and Endeavour. The shuttle Challenger was destroyed when it blew apart on launch in 1986. killing the crew.





URING W orld Wrar I. German airships were used Tor l long-range bombing raids over England. Their I ability to fly quickly over great distances led to a I golden age of passenger airships in the 1920s and

1930s. Two huge German ships, the Graf Zeppelin and the Hindenburg, carried passengers ever the Atlantic.

Driven by diesel engines, the airships could cross the ocean in about two days, much (aster than a ship. The airships were like flying luxury hotels. They included private cabins, observation decks, fine dining rooms, and lounges. The trip was so comfortable one passenger described it as “Wing carried in the arms ol angels.”

Подпись:The Hindenburg, over 800 feet long, was the largest airship ever built. Passengers and crew occupied a small part ol the ship. ilost ol it was filled with gas cells that held hydrogen, the llammable gas that gave the ship its lilt. In 193/, the Hindenburg exploded and crashed. I he tragedy’ ended the age of passenger airships.

Подпись: і

Подпись: Ifl


The German airship Graf Zeppelin floats over a Dornier Do-X flying boat. The Graf Zeppelin was the Hindenburg’s sister ship. The two luxury airships carried thousands of passengers over the Atlantic between World Wars I and II.

► Lap of Luxury

On an airship’s promenade deck (top right), passengers relaxed and enjoyed breathtaking views out the window. In the dining room of the Hindenburg (right), stewards served passengers wine and gourmet meals from the galley.

Fun Fact: Not Cheap

During the 1920s, only the rich could afford airship travel. A one-way trip over the Atlantic could cost as much as a new car. A round-trip fare could equal the cost of a moderate house.

▼ Нттинбі rash

On May 6,1937, the Hindenburg was approaching Lakehurst, New lersey. lt suddenly exploded, burst into flames, and fell from the sky. Of the 97 on board, 35 died. No one knows for sure what triggered the explosion.

History Fact: Better Gas

Airships like the Hmderiburg were prone to explosions because hydrogen, the gas that kept the ship up, was flammable. Today, airships use helium, a gas that does not burn.


Shuttle Orbiter


HE shuttle orbiter, the airplane-like part of the

shuttle, is about the size of a DC-9 jetliner. It has three main sections. The forward fuselage holds the crew cabin, with the llight deck. The mid fuselage houses the payload (cargo) bay and robot arm (Remote Manipulator System). The aft fuselage has the vertical tail, three main engines, and orbital maneuvering engines.

The crew of five to seven sleeps, eats, and cooks in the cabin mid deck below the flight deck. Crew members float about, moving between the decks through two hatches. The galley, or kitchen, contains a large variety ol foods. The astronauts take turns preparing three meals a day for the crew.

The payload bay is not pressurized.

To enter it. the astronauts go into an air lock. There, they change into space suits. Then they can work in the bay or outside the ship.

Flight deck and cockpit Commander’s seat Pilot’s sedt two crew seats Payload bay controls Air lock Crew hatch Toilet Mid deck

Подпись: f INSIDE THE ORBITER this cutaway view of the shuttle Discovery with its payload bay doors open reveals the orbiter's interior. About 120 feet long and 57 feet high, the orbiter has a wingspan of 80 feet. Its biggest area is the payload bay.The crew live in the forward fuselage cabin. Подпись:Avionics bay (onboard electronics)

Forward control thrusters Nose wheel for landing Reinforced carbon carbon (RCC) on orbiter nose Thermal tile shield Payload bay doors Payload bay Camera on RMS RMS fRemote Manipulator System)

Communications satellite, held by RMS Main landing wheels Delta wing

Elevon (combines function of aileron and elevator)

Main engine Aft control thrusters Orbital maneuvering engine Rudder and speed brake Vertical tail stabilizer

image236Fun Fact: Big Load

The payload bay can hold over 60,000 pounds, or 30 tons, of cargo, including space station parts, satellites, telescopes, Spacelab, a portable science laboratory, or other equipment.

Flying lioats

IN the 1930s, flying boats became the largest, most comfortable passenger planes in the world. The spacious planes had hulls shaped like boats and floats under their wings. They could land and take off on the sea, as well as lakes and rivers.

In a time when aircraft engines were still unreliable, people thought flying boats were a safer wray to travel over the ocean.

Pan American Airlines called its flying boats clippers, alter the speedy sailing ships. They carried passengers to exotic destinations, such as the Far East and South America, at a time when few airports existed.

Flying boats were luxury cralt designed to compete with ocean liners. The biggest was Pan Am s Boeing 314 Clipper. A 106-foot-long-giant, it carried passengers at 174 miles an hour to Hong Kong or other cites in unequaled comfort. Yet as airports were built all over the world, flying boats were replaced by land aircralt.

Подпись:image119Подпись: FUN FACT: SHIP-SHAPEimage120Подпись:When a flying boat landed on water, it tied up di a mooring buoy or simply dropped its own anchor, like a ship.

Подпись: A 1937 baggage label advertises a Pan Am flight from New York to Bermuda in five hours.image121image122

* Traveling the World

The cover of a 1930s Pan American timetable, in the Museum collection, shows routes spanning much of the globe. These routes opened the world to air travelers.

У China Clipper

The Martin M -130, the"China Clipper," rests at a mooring station off Manila after her first transpacific flight on November 29,1935.The streamlined plane flew from San Francisco to Manila in 59 hours.

image123ERY different from the flimsy biplanes of World War I, the fighter aircraft of World War II were tough, fast, and efficient. Aircraft had now become a primary means of waging war. Two nations, Germany and Japan, set out to dominate the world. In 1939, Nazi Germany began invading European countries. The German air force was called the Luftwaffe, or “air weapon.” Its Messerschmitt Bt 109 was a swift, fearsome fighter. More than 33,000 were produced.

German fighters and bombers terrorized Europe. Allied nations, including the United States, produced thousands of aircraft to light Germany and Japan. Fight eggs escorted bombers deep into enemy territory and battled in dogfights. Pilot skill was paramount. Spurred by war, aircraft advanced rapidly. Sleek new fighters flew at over 400 miles an hour and went 2,000 miles without refueling. By war’s end, the iirst

Combat Pilot

image124"Подпись:Подпись:image125Подпись:Wounded and dazed, pilot Quentin C. Aanenson poses with his P-47 Thunderbolt fighter plane, Topsy. Aanenson had just crash-landed on his base after being hit by "flak,"or antiaircraft fire, in a mission over Germany.


* Supermarine Spitfire

Britain’s most famous fighter, the Spitfire was fast and nimble and could outmarieuver the German Bf 109.This Spitfire in the Museum is a high-altitude version of the fighter, and could fly over

40,0 feet.


¥ Curtiss Р-і»о Warhawk

Lieutenant Donald Lopez stands with his P-40 Warhawk in 1943. Mow Deputy Director of the National Air and Space Museum, Lopez became an ace flying with the Fourteenth Air Force. They battled the Japanese in China.


North American P-31 Mustang

A pilot smiles inside his P-51 D Mustang. This U. S. fighter could fly at 440 miles an hour. It was fitted with a drop tank so it could fly extra miles to go deep inside Germany. Swastikas on the plane’s side represent German planes shot down.

► Messerschmitt Bf 109

Germany’s Messerschmitt Bf 109 was the main opponent of the P-51 Mustang and the British Spitfire. With a top speed of 385 miles an hour, it could swiftly climb, dive, and turn in dogfights.



Подпись: N Подпись: c^tiSS

image130? ScRAMBLt!

British fighter pilots run to their Hawker Hurricane fighters to take off during the Battle of Britain. Though not as agile as the Spitfire, the sturdy Hurricane easily shot down large numbers of slower, low-flying German bombers.


L ч


^ 4

‘Never… wao oo much owed by о о many to oo few. All heart,* go out to the fighter piloto, whooe brilliant actio no we, tee with out own eyeo day after day… ”

British Prime Minister Winston Churchill

< Observer Corps

British men and women volunteered as aircraft spotters in 1940. this chart shows how to identify various planes. Many Allies fought with the RAF. The poster at right helped recruit pilots for the Royal Australian Air force.


▼ "Achtung, Spitfire!"

German pilots warn each other as a Spitfire zooms in to attack. ! he agile "Spit"could quickly train its 8 machine guns in a deadly hail of bullets and tear apart an enemy


Fun Fact: Super Binoculars


During the Battle of Britain, the British relied on their coastal radar, called the Chain Home system. It could detect German planes 40 miles away. German pilots called this new radac"super binoculars."


300 yards away.








THE United States produced thousands of bombers during World War II. Among the most famous was the Boeing B-17. Called the Flying Fortress, this plane lived up to its name. It could carry over 17,000 pounds of bombs, and was armed with 12 machine guns for defense against enemy fighters. Later U. S. bombers included the Boeing B-24 Liberator and the enormous B-29 Superfortress. Many bombers were destroyed by enemy fighters and antiaircraft guns early in the war. The use of fighter escorts helped bombers complete their missions. Later bombers, such as the B-29, could fly to high altitudes beyond the reach of most enemy fire.

Подпись: BOMBS AWAY! Flying over Burma, B-29 Superfortresses release a shower of bombs.Tneir target was a Japanese supply depot near Rangoon. First flown in 1944,the B-29 was the largest U.S. bomber. It could deliver a whopping 20,000 pounds of bombs.
Подпись: A B-2t,s ATTACK Under heavy antiaircraft fire, B-24 Liberator bombers attack an oil refinery in Romania in 1943. Black smoke rises from the ground where bombs hit the oil tanks.

image134"Bombers attacked in huge fleets of up to a thousand to knock out enemy luel bases, arms supplies, and transportation lines. Never before had aircraft been used to destroy on such a large scale.

Подпись: FUN FACT: HASS PRODUCTIONПодпись:image135"image136

► Flak Bait

The nose section of Flak Bvit, a Martin B-26 Marauder bomber, is now in the National Air and Space Museum. Ihis plane flew 200 missions over Europe, more than any other Allied bomber. Over 1,000 patches cover holes made by antiaircraft tire, or"flak."

Inside Flak Bait

This interior view shows the radio and navigation station of Flak Bait. Visible through the door is the cockpit instrument panel. It was shattered by a German Bf 109 Messerschmitt shell in 1943.The wounded pilot managed to safely land the plane.

► The WASPs

Women pilots train to fly B-17 bombers at a flight school during the war. Known as the Women’s Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs), they transported military aircraft to war zones. They flew everything from fighters to heavy bombers. Over 30 were killed in service.

4 B-17 Waist Gunner

Inside a B-17 Flying Fortress, gunner Robert Taylor fires a 50-caliber machine gun to ward off attacking German fighters. He wears warm clothing and a metal-lined "flak apron" to protect against shell fire.

AFTER Japanese warplanes bombed the U. S. naval base at Pearl Harbor in 1941, the United States entered the war. During the next years, much of the war took place at sea. From 1941 to 1945, the L United States and Japan battled in the Pacific.

■ Their most powerful weapons were aircraft

carriers. Floating airfields, the huge ships known as "flattops” were 820 Feet long and carried up to 100 warplanes. Fighters and bombers took off and landed on their flat decks. The carriers allowed great mobility of air attack.

Подпись: A U.S. Navy airship guards a German submarine after it has surfaced and surrendered in the Atlantic in 1945. A Navy ship waits behind. Used for coastal surveillance, airships were an important part of U.S. naval defense.

image138"In 1942, Japan launched an attack on Midway Island with four carriers. Navy dive bombers From three U. S. carriers surprised and attacked die Japanese fleet. They sank all four Japanese carriers. With the ships, Japan lost 250 planes and their most veteran pilots. This was a crippling blow that marked the turning point against Japan in the Pacific.

Подпись: HISTORY FACT: DIVINE WINDПодпись:image139"


The Cherry Blossom, a Japanese Kugisho MXY7 Ohka kamikaze bomber, is today part of the Museum collection. Japanese kamikaze pilots flew these planes, filled with bombs, deliberately into Allied ships. They believed that suicide in such attacks was an honorable death.


U. S. Navy Douglas Dauntless dive bombers bomb the Japanese aircraft carrier Akogl in this painting. The bombers sank this and three other Japanese carriers near Midway Island in 1942. Most of Japan’s most skilled pilots and their planes, plus 3,000 sailors, v/ere lost.

Cleared to Go

A signal officer aboard a U. S. carrier waves the takeoff flag for a Grumman Hellcat fighter. Carrier takeoffs and landings took great pilot skill. A net across the deck helped damaged planes returning from battle to skid safely to a stop.

. Space Telescope

SPACE shuttle missions, which last usually one to two weeks, often launch equipment in space, retrieve it, or repair it. In 1990, the space shuttle DiWove/y launched the huge Hubble Space Telescope (HST) into Earth orbit. Called the “new window on the universe,” it was expected to give much clearer pictures of space than ever before because it would be orbiting outside Earth’s atmosphere.

Unfortunately» the first images from the HST were blurred because of a faulty mirror system. After over a year of training, crew in the space shuttle Епдшш(щг took off to repair the telescope in December 1993.

The astronauts worked on the telescope standing on the shuttle’s big robot arm, the Remote Manipulator System. They replaced corrective optical equipment, added a new camera, and other parts. By Januaryi images from the telescope showed the repairs had worked. Пае pictures were clear and spectacular! These images have helped scientists learn much more about the universe.

Underwater Training

image238"Astronauts prepare for a mission to repair the Hubble Space Telescope in space by training in a huge tank of waterJhe feeling of moving in water is similar to that of floating in the weightlessness of space.



Space Repairmen

In December 1993, two astronauts of the space shuttle tndpovour repair the Hubble Space Telescope. They work at the end of the shuttle’s robot arm. (he astronauts inserted special mirrors to correct the flaw that had blurred the telescope’s images.


* Celestial £ye

This Hubble lelescope image shows a huge glowing "eye" known as nebula NGC 6751. fhe nebula is a luminous cloud of gas ejected from the hot star in its center.




Swirling Galaxies

An image from the repaired Hubble Space Telescope shows the close encounter of two galaxies. The starry pinwheels, galaxy NGC 2207 with a large bright center and galaxy 1C 2163, lie tens of millions of light years away from Earth.


. Space Telescope


. Enola Gay

BY the summer of 1945, U. S. aircraft had sunk

over 700,000 tons of Japanese warships and destroyed over 12,000 Japanese planes. Yet the і Japanese would not surrender. Meanwhile, the I United States had built the largest bomber of the war, the B-29 Superfortress. It had also secretly developed the atomic bomb.

Подпись:Подпись:Подпись: The B-29 was the only bomber large and strong enough to carry heavy nuclear weaDons.The В-29's power came from four supercharged 2,200-horsepower Wright eng nes.Подпись:image140
image141"In August, U. S. president Harry Truman decided to use the bomb to end the war and continuing loss of American lives. He ordered the flight of the B-29 Enola Gay to carry and drop the atomic bomb on Japan. Called Uittle Bov, the weapon was a 9,/ 00 pound uranium bomb. On August 6, 1945, the bomb was dropped over the Japanese city of Hiroshima. In seconds, the blast smashed the city and killed thousands of people. Yet Japan still did not surrender. Three days later, a 10,000 pound plutonium bomb, called “hat Mari,” was dropped from a second B-29 over Nagasaki. This explosion killed thousands more. On August 15, Japan tlnally agreed to surrender.

History Fact: Lethal Weapon

The blast of the uranium bomb dropped on Hirosh ma was equal to about

20,0 tons of TNT.

Mushroom Cloud

A giant cloud rises from a test explosion of an atomic bomb in the Pacific. Such blasts can generate over 100 million degrees F. of heat. Atomic bombs dropped over Hiroshima and Nagasaki wreaked terrible destruction and caused Japan’s unconditional surrender.

f Famous B-29

image142The Enola вау comes in for a landing on its base after its historic mission. The Superfortress was donated to the National Air and Space Museum after the war.

Meeting Міг

N June 29, 1995, the space shuttle MLntti* made a historic flight. It successfully met and docked with the Russian space station Mir, or “Peace,” orbiting 245 miles above the Earth. Shuttle mission commander Robert L. Gibson steered Atlantis into docking position near Mir. Both were hurtling through space at 17,500 miles an hour. Gibson had to slow Atlantic down and very carefully maneuver it to avoid a crash. I Ie also had to act quickly enough to catch and lock onto the space station before it drifted beyond reach. He performed the maneuver perfectly.

After docking, uxz AJikintitt crew floated through a connecting tunnel to enter Mir and met the Russian cosmonauts inside. For five days, the two crews socialized and worked on experiments together. This was the first ol several visits of space shuttles to Mir. The two countries that were once fierce rivals in space have since done much to cooperate with each other to increase space knowledge.

Space Partners

A mission patch for a 1996 Shuttle-Mir mission emphasizes the cooperation between the two nations in peaceful space projects. At right, a poster promotes the rental of space on Mir to American research companies.

> ► Linked Together

Docked in space, the shuttle Atlantis and Mir space station float in orbit. This picture was taken by a Soyuz ferry spacecraft in June 1995. Such joint missions helped pave the way for work on the new International Space Station.

Fun Fact: Long Trip

The record time for living in space is held by Russian doctor faJgw Pnliakov. He stayed on Mir a total of 438 days! From his experience, scientists learned much about how the human body adapts to long periods in space.

image242Maneuvering in Space

Steering the shuttle in space requires two systems. The orbital maneuvering system (OMS) engines slow the shuttle down and move it up or down. Then 44 rocket thrusters on the craft’s nose and tail can be fired to change speed or direction.

The Russian space station Mir passes over New Zealand. In orbit since 1986, the station was replaced by the new International Space Station in 2001. Mir was abandoned and allowed to burn up in the atmosphere as it fell back to Earth.


к 4 Space Bear

Magellan T. Bear became the Щ first official teddy bear in space when he flew aboard tne shuttle Discovery in 1995. Sponsored by a group of school chilcren, he was an "education specialist."


space and Fly on i space shuttle?

Do you get sick? I low do you use the bathroom? What do you eat’


sleep: 1 hese are И,_ – яА BBJl

all questions astronauts. в ^ЩИНННРчН

are olten asked. Я і

.Most astronauts are

very excited at liftoff and ЩЕ jfi_

they – enjoy the Iree fl

leeling ol weightless – 1 –

ness in space. Some Л|

are a little space sick

at lirst, but soon

adjust to the lack of

gravity – They learn to glide, twist, and

somersault expertly through space.

The crew eat the same foods and drinks they enjoy on Earth, including fruits, vegetables, meats, and desserts, but they eat them Irom disposable containers. The astronauts do not shower because water would escape and float in blobs everywhere. Instead, they squirt water on a sponge and take sponge baths. The shuttle has a bathroom and special toilet the crew use.

To sleep, the astronauts curl up inside sleeping bags hung on a wall or simply float in a comfortable spot.


емдчпнтке Tttf OM. Y


Space Toilet

Astronauts aboard the shuttle use this special toilet. It has air suction in place of gravity to remove wastes through a hose and bowl. It also has foot restraints so the astronaut using it won’t float away!


V Mission Patches

Space shuttle mission patches have a design symbolizing each mission and the names of astronauts on the mission.


Butterfly Experiment

These Painted Lady butterflies emerged from cocoons on a space shuttle mission. They were an experiment planned by a group of high school students to see if caterpillars can develop in the microgravity of space.




Meeting Міг





▼ Moving in Space

Mission specialist Carl Welz floats through a tunnel from the shuttle cabin into a science laboratory module. Although astronauts often feel nausea at first, they soon enjoy moving in space. Many say it feels like swimming in air.

► Brushing Up

Astronauts Frank Culbertson and Daniel Bursch brush their teeth on the shuttle.

They use disposable brushes with edible toothpaste and squirt water in their mouths. There is no sink or running water because the water would float around the cabin.

A Sally K, Ride (1951- )

Sally Ride became the first American woman in space in 1983.Trained as a physicist, she joined NASA in 1978 and became an astronaut. She flew on the space shuttle Challenger as a mission specialist. Here, she sleeps in a sleeping restraint on the shuttle.


The Sound Barrier


OWARD the end ol World War II, aircraft entered a new age ol speed. In 1944 and 1945, German pilots flew the first jet-powered lighter in combat, the Alesserschmitt Ale 262. Allied pilots were astonished to spot it zooming over 100 miles an hour laster than any Allied lighter, and with no propellers!

Alter the war, many pilots tried to fly taster th an the speed of sound. On October 14, 1947, American test pilot Chuck Yeager flew an orange bullet-shaped plane with a rocket engine. It was the Bell X-l, designed to break the sound barrier. Carried up by a B-29 mother plane to save fuel, the X-l was dropped in the air. Yeager lired the rocket engine anil pushed the plane to over 700 miles an hour, past Alach 1 —the speed ot sound. The plane bulleted, then blasted through the sound barrier. Once past Alach 1. it was so smooth, said Yeager, “Grandma could be sitting up there sipping lemonade.”

‘Suddenly the Alach needle began to fluctuate…then lipped right off the ocale, I thought / wao oeeuig thi ago! We were flying ouperoonic:

—Chuck Yeager describing flying
through the sound barrier

Bell X-i

Test pilot Chuck Yeager stands beside his rocket-powered Bell X-1, named the Glamorous Glennis for his wife. The plane now hangs in the National Air and Space Museum. Streamlined for speed, it is shaped like a.50 caliber bullet.

Charles “Chuck" Yeager (1923- )

A World War II fighter pilot. Chuck Yeager became an Air Force test pilot after the war. He made history as the first person to break the sound barrier in 1947. At the time, many believed a plane flying through the sound barrier would be ripped apart by the shock wave. Yeager later rose to the rank of brigadier general.

Famous Flight

On October 14,1947, the Bell X-1 accelerates and races toward the sound barrier. Flying at 43,000 feet, pilot Chuck Yeager became the first person to travel faster than sound, at Mach 1.06.



Mach numbers measure the speed of an aircraft in relation to the speed of sound. Mach 1 is the speed of sound, which increases with temperature because sound travels faster in warmer air. At

40,0 feet, Mach I is 657 miles an hour.

► The Sound Barrier

Moving through the air, a plane makes pres­sure waves. When the plane catc hes up with its own pressure waves, they bunch together, building into a shock wave. Passing the speed of sound, the plane flies ahead of its pressure waves, forming a cone-like shock wave.


Frank Whittle (1907-1996)

Frank Whittle was a young British pilot who patented the first turbojet engine in 1931. It used a jet of hot gases instead of propellers. Soon after, German engineer Hans von Ohain invented a similar engine Germany first produced a jet fighter in 1943, the Messerschmitt Me 262. A year later, the British began flying a jet fighter, the Gloster Meteor. Its engines were based on a Whittle design.

f Messerschmitt Me 262

The first jet-propelled fighter used in combat, the German Messerschmitt Me 262 Schwalbe (swallow) was flown during World War II. Four 30 mm cannons made it a fearsome opponent. This

Gliding Home

ETURNING to Earth, the shuttle orbiter is trans­formed from a spacecraft into a giant glider.

First, its maneuvering engine rockets fire a last time to slow it down to drop from orbit.

Reentering Earth’s atmosphere, it passes through scorch mg heat and tremendous friction. The thermal heat shield does its job well and protects the ship during the fiery journey. Next, computers guide the orbiter through a series of S turns to slow it down more. I he orbiter’s speed drops f rom over 17,000 miles an hour to about 350 miles an hour.

The craft glides in silently. At about 20 miles from the runway, the mission commander takes control and brings it in lor a landing. The shuttle can also land automatically, if necessary. As the wheels touch down, the craft lands at between 200 and 226 miles an hour and slows to a stop. Then the astronauts exit the orbiter on ordinaiy

image247I Coming in to Land

Like a giant bird, the shuttle Columbia ghees unpowered to land at Kennedy Space Center. The commander aims carefully landing the craft. If it misses the runway, he cannot turn around to core Pack and try again.

і What a Drag

Once the shuttle’s wheels hit the runway, a parachute opens to slow the orbiter.

As the craft lands at over 200 miles an hour, the drag chute helps it gradually b^ake to a stop.

► Getting д Lift

The shuttle Atlantis is lifted in a machine to mount it on the back of з Boeing 747. With no power to fly through the atmosphere after it lands, the shuttle orbiter must be ferried by a 7<r back to its launch site.

► Piggyback Ride

Aboard a 747 ferry, the shuttle Atlantis returns to Florida after being repaired in California. Shuttles are used over and over, always launching from Kennedy Space Center n Florida.

today’s four space shuttles have all flown many times. Since the first mission in 1981, there have been over 100 shuttle flights.

HE largest object ever built in space, the Intern­ational Space Station (ISS) Floats in Earth orbit in an artist’s concept. Begun in 1998, it will sprawl twice the size ol a football held when complete. The ISS is being built jointly bv 16 nations, including the United States, Russia, Canada, countries of the European Space Agency, and Japan. It will cost about $60 billion.


Already’ home to an American-Russian crew, the station has a roomy kitchen, bathroom, and sleeping and exercise areas. Omni solar panels convert energy From the Sun lor electric power. The station will provide an international center For many kinds ol scientific research. In its laboratories, scientists will study lile in space and test new medicines and materials lor use on Earth. One day, the ISS may also be the departure terminal For missions to other planets.

^ Outpost in Space

leveling 770 miles high over Fdrth, the International Space Station is shown as it will look when complete, around 2006.

A crew of 7 will live m a space as big as two 747 jet cabins. The size of two football fields, the station will weigh a million pounds.

Fun Fact: Big Job

More than 40 trips by space shuttle and other craft will be required to deliver the parts, supplies, and equipment needed to build the ISS.

Fun Fact: Speeded Up


Traveling more than 17,000 miles an hour, the ISS whips around the Earth 16 times a day. The crew on board see



Подпись: gilding the ISSimage251Подпись:SOME 220 miles over Earth, the world’s highest

construction site bustles with activity and work is in lull swing. Workers move cranes hoisting huge building blocks. The giant structure going up is the International Space Station. The workers building it are astronauts.

The construction work will continue lor five years. The astronauts will spend many hours of spacewalks assembling the station. They will get help from a large robotic arm made in Camida and possibly a flying robotic “eye” that can circle around to inspect the huge station.

In the finished station, scientists believe the absence of gravity will allow them to do experiments not possible on Earth. They hope to develop new drugs, new ways to treat and prevent diseases, more powerful computer chips, stronger metals, and better weather forecasting systems. Life on the ISS will also provide knowledge for future space travel beyond Earth’s orbit.

Early Space Station

In May 2000, the first parts of the new ISS orbit Earth. The station at this stage has two sections, or modules. The first U. S. module, Unity (top), is joined to the Russian power and propulsion module, Zarya ("Sunrise").

Подпись:image252* All Systems Go

In this artist’s concept, a space shuttle has docked at the finished ISS. When complete, the station will be a busy center of scientific research, new discoveries, and exciting plans for future missions to explore space.