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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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Now displaying: 2021
Jul 22, 2021

Space Shuttle Discovery is all loaded up with a grab bag of shuttle program favorites. Rendezvous, tech demonstrations, even an untethered EVA! Just be careful for the ghosts in the bathroom..

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Jul 8, 2021

Space Shuttle Columbia is flying for the 17th time, carrying the International Microgravity Laboratory 2 payload. With fish, newts, and bubbles, it sounds more like a witch's brew than an advanced research laboratory. But don't let vague descriptions fool you! Also, who can leap long Spacelabs in a single bound? None other than IML Man, of course!

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Errata: Around 4:48 I say "[...] sitting behind the Pilot on the middeck [...]" when, of course, the Pilot sits on the flight deck. Got myself all mixed up with MS1/MS3 out of position.

Jun 24, 2021

We've got a giant radar in the payload bay, bubbles in the water, and we're ready to learn about somebody's favorite type of lizard. It's time for STS-59!

 

Errata: Around two minutes into the episode I use the term "frequency" multiple times when "wavelength" is correct. Really, since the wavelength is just the speed of light divided by the frequency if you know one you know the other, but still, I used the wrong term.

Jun 10, 2021

Space Shuttle Columbia has been packed full of so many experiments you might think there are two different payloads back there.. and you'd be right! Let's learn about fake-metal dendrites, how to stop the orbiter from glowing, and why the NASA ground crews think Pierre Thuot smells like garbage.

May 27, 2021

Look out! There's a Russian on the space shuttle! Oh, we invited him? Well alright then.

May 13, 2021

The Hubble Space Telescope is in trouble. With the future of the orbiting observatory, and perhaps NASA itself, on the line, can the crew of STS-61 save the day?

Apr 29, 2021

With STS-61 ready to execute the first servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope, let's learn about the overall structure of the observatory, what the flaw with its mirror was, and how that flaw came to be.

Apr 15, 2021

Columbia is on the launchpad and we've got a whole bunch of life science to get through. And just when you thought it was safe to drop the word "otolith" from your vocabulary.

Apr 1, 2021

We've got a packed flight with an advanced communciation satellite, a new kick stage, the return of SPAS, an EVA and a sassy air traffic controller.

Mar 18, 2021

In this episode, rather than hearing me talk about STS-51, we talk to someone who worked on its primary payload: astronaut Dan Tani! We also chat a bit about some government job he had down in Houston.

Mar 4, 2021

Space Shuttle Endeavour is here with STS-57, which brings us a little piece of much of what the shuttle program has to offer. Satellite captures, EVAs, technology demonstrations, commercial space stuff, mysterious loud booming noises.. wait, mysterious loud booming noises?

Feb 18, 2021

Germany is back together and back in orbit with their second shuttle flight, the D-2 Spacelab mission. I wonder what sort of science they have in store for us? We also wonder who's squeezing the bag under the middeck.

Feb 4, 2021

ATLAS is back in the payload bay for round two of the ongoing series of Earth observation missions. And TAGS gets some competition!

Jan 21, 2021

TDRS-F needs a ride to orbit, NASA needs more EVA experience, and we all need to figure out what's up with soft x-rays. Good thing Endeavour's on the pad for its third flight!

Jan 7, 2021

STS-53 is here and with it we've got a secret satellite, a fictional hot tub, and a space shuttle full of dogs. I promise that sentence will make sense at the end of the episode.

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