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Proceedings Paper

Spacelab--Status And Capabilities
Author(s): M. Bignier
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Paper Abstract

Future space missions will require spacecraft that yield the maximum scientific and applications benefit at low cost. A broad range of services will be required to satisfy the user needs in low earth orbit missions. Spacelab, as an earth-orbiting laboratory for scientific research and applications, will provide to its users features that have been available, so far, only in traditional ground based laboratories. In addition to the classical space disciplines like astronomy and solar physics, Spacelab will serve as a platform for new disciplines like Life Sciences and Materials Sciences. In particular, in the Materials Sciences field space will offer new opportunities for commercial development. With the Engineering Model of Spacelab already delivered to NASA and the first Flight Unit scheduled to be delivered to the launch site by October of this year, the development of Spacelab, which represents a significant contribution of Europe to the Space Transportation System, is nearing its completion. This paper summarises the status and the capabilities of Spacelab. Emphasis will be placed on the unique flexibility and versatility of the Spacelab concept supporting a broad spectrum of scientific and applications missions. This paper also briefly addresses the benefit of utilizing - to the maximum extent - existing Spacelab hardware for future space applications as envisaged in ESA's Follow-on-Development Programme.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 February 1982
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 0284, NASA-ESA Spacelab Systems and Programs, (1 February 1982); doi: 10.1117/12.965767
Show Author Affiliations
M. Bignier, European Space Agency (France)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 0284:
NASA-ESA Spacelab Systems and Programs
Jesse W. Moore, Editor(s)

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