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The Space Above Us

A podcast about the history of NASA human spaceflight. New episodes every other Thursday.
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The Space Above Us
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Aug 8, 2019

The crew of STS-51I had an unusual satellite repair mission on the flight plan. They better make sure they're well rested.

Jul 25, 2019

Challenger makes history on a one of a kind mission. Who knew turning a rotary dial could be so dramatic?

Jul 11, 2019

We've got a lot going on for the fifth flight of Space Shuttle Discovery. Commsats, lasers, something about a star war, and did that guy say he was a prince?

Jun 27, 2019

It's been a long wait, well, for some of us, but STS-51B is here! Spacelab is operational and has a whole bunch of science to do. But how are we going to get the monkeys into the payload bay?

Jun 13, 2019

We've got a full orbiter for this flight! Seven crew members, two commsats, a bunch of toys, and plenty of duct tape and cardboard.

May 30, 2019

We're back to our usual schedule! And what better way to return from an unexpected break than a mission about which we know almost nothing? This week, STS-51C: the shuttle's first classified mission.

May 16, 2019

No new episode this week because I got appendicitis and need to recover from my appendectomy. Sorry! New episode in two weeks. 

May 2, 2019

STS-41B left some unfinished business in low earth orbit in the form of a couple of stranded communications satellites. On STS-51A, we're gonna go get 'em.

Apr 18, 2019

Challenger's back on the launch pad with the biggest crew we've seen yet, but something seems to be wrong with the Ku-band antenna. I hope you're ready for some orbiter attitude gymnastics!

Apr 4, 2019

Space Shuttle Discovery joins the cast, and makes a dramatic entrance.

Mar 21, 2019

The Solar Maximum Mission is in trouble, and only the crew of STS-41C can save it. Join us for the shuttle's first on-orbit repair of an uncrewed satellite!

Mar 7, 2019

STS-41B (wait, what happened to STS-10?) runs into a few bumps in the road, but clears the road for the next mission and comes home with some pretty spiffy photos.

Feb 21, 2019

John Young flies for one last time, carrying a payload bay full of science. Wait, does someone hear a sizzling sound coming from the engine compartment?

Feb 7, 2019

Challenger hauls the mail on STS-8, before using a giant dumbbell to flex its remote manipulator system muscles.

Jan 24, 2019

Sally Ride becomes America's first female astronaut to fly in space, and teaches Challenger how to say 7 for the camera.

Jan 10, 2019

Challenger flies for the first time and the TDRSS constellation gets started.

Dec 27, 2018

With five days, four crew members, three.. uhh.. engines, two satellites, and one planned EVA, STS-5 is going to be a busy flight!

Dec 13, 2018

Ken Mattingly and Hank Hartsfield were apparently born in a barn, because they can't get the door closed!

Nov 29, 2018

Jack Lousma and Gordon Fullerton fly Columbia on its third mission, carrying a whole bunch of shuttle-inspecting experiments with them.

Nov 15, 2018

Joe Engle and Dick Truly are ready to take Columbia for a ride and usher in the era of reusable spacecraft.

Nov 1, 2018

John Young and Bob Crippen strap in and fly Columbia on its first mission. But how will mission control deal with missing tiles on the heat shield?

Oct 18, 2018

This week we discuss three of the biggest challenges to getting the space shuttle off the ground: the engines, the computers, and the tiles. Oh, and we meet 54 new friends.

Oct 4, 2018

The Space Shuttle would be NASA's first spacecraft to land on a runway. So it's probably a good idea to make sure it's up to the task.

Sep 20, 2018

With our tour of the External Tank and Solid Rocket Boosters complete, it's time to take a look at what they're getting into orbit: the Space Shuttle Orbiter.

Sep 6, 2018

Now that the Space Shuttle has been approved, it's time to figure out what the vehicle will actually look like. With that in mind, we take a close look at the two major support players of the STS: the External Tank and Solid Rocket Boosters.

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