Veteran astronaut Paul J. Weitz has died at the age of 85. Among his many accomplishments, Weitz served as a pilot aboard the Skylab space station, commanded the first flight of the Space Shuttle Challenger, and logged nearly 800 total hours in space.
Astronauts work incredibly hard, putting in long hours in unnatural, difficult conditions. But sometimes they get pushed too hard, and reach a breaking point. This is the story of Skylab 4, the astronaut crew that kicked off the holidays with a mutiny.
Can a spider spin a web even when torn free of the grip of gravity? Thanks to a research experiment devised by Judith Miles, we know!
July 28, 1973: Skylab drifts far above the Amazon River Valley of Brazil like a deep-space dragonfly.
August 19, 1966: The details may be lacking, but all the major components of this concept sketch made it into the creation of Skylab, NASA’s first space station.
You’ve heard the story of how duct tape saved Apollo 13*, but that’s not the only time tape has come to the rescue in space. Here are some of the ridiculously cool ways tape makes life far, far better in low Earth orbit and beyond.
When the Skylab orbital workshop was damaged on launch, it lost its sunshield and started overheating. This is a story of Alyene Baker saving the station, and a story of never underestimating the importance of being able to improvise with a sewing machine.
In 1973, astronaut Owen Garriott clambered around outside of Skylab to collect interplanetary dust particles. Because dusting isn't just a household chore when you're in space; it's an opportunity to collect samples for science.
In 1966, George E. Mueller, NASA associate administrator for Manned Space Flight, produced a concept drawing of what would become "Skylab," the world's first space station. The first of three crewed Skylab mission launched May 14, 1973 – 41 years ago, today.
NASA launched the unmanned Skylab-1 into orbit by a Saturn V booster 40 years ago today, on May 14, 1973, from Kennedy Space Center. It was the United States's first foray into significant scientific research in microgravity.
Remember the space age? It wasn't that long ago. This illustration from Peter Fairley's 1970 Space Annual is a great line drawing, but moreover reminds me of the wonder and awe we used to have for the space program.