Lockheed Space Operations Company was scheduled to launch a Space Shuttle Challenger OV-099 rocket as part of the
STS-61-A mission. The launch window for the Microgravity Research mission was
on Wed, Oct 30th, 1985, 12:00 PM EST from Launch Complex 39A, Kennedy Space Center, FL. The status of the launch was Success.
Don’t miss this exciting rocket launch!
Watch the launch video
of the Space Shuttle Challenger OV-099 and experience the excitement for yourself.
STS-61-A was the twenty-second space shuttle flight and ninth for Space Shuttle Challenger. It was a scientific spacelab mission funded entirely by West Germany. The payload operations were controlled from the German Space Operations Center as opposed to the regular NASA centers.
Space Shuttle Challenger was the second orbiter of NASA's space shuttle program to be put into service following Columbia. Its maiden flight, STS-6, started on April 4, 1983. It launched and landed nine times before breaking apart 73 seconds into its tenth mission, STS-51-L, on January 28, 1986, resulting in the death of all seven crew members, including a civilian school teacher. It was the first of two shuttles to be destroyed in flight, the other being Columbia in 2003.
Henry Warren "Hank" Hartsfield Jr. was a United States Air Force officer and a USAF and NASA astronaut who logged over 480 hours in space. Hartsfield became a NASA astronaut in September 1969. Hartsfield was the pilot on STS-4, the fourth and final orbital test flight of the shuttle Columbia.
Bonnie Jeanne Dunbar is a former NASA astronaut. She retired from NASA in September 2005 then served as president and CEO of The Museum of Flight until April 2010. From January 2013 - December 2015, Dr. Dunbar lead the University of Houston's STEM Center (science, technology, engineering and math) and was a faculty member in the Cullen College of Engineering. Currently, she is a professor of aerospace engineering at Texas A&M University and serves as Director of the Institute for Engineering Education and Innovation (IEEI), a joint entity in the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) and the Dwight Look College of Engineering at Texas A&M University.
Guion Stewart Bluford Jr., Ph.D. is an American aerospace engineer, retired U.S. Air Force officer and fighter pilot, and former NASA astronaut, who was the first African American in space. Before becoming an astronaut, he was an officer in the U.S. Air Force, where he remained while assigned to NASA, rising to the rank of Colonel. He participated in four Space Shuttle flights between 1983 and 1992. In 1983, as a member of the crew of the Orbiter Challenger on the mission STS-8, he became the first African American in space as well as the second person of African ancestry in space, after Cuban cosmonaut Arnaldo Tamayo Méndez.
Prof. Dr. Reinhard Alfred Furrer (25 November 1940 – 9 September 1995) was a German physicist and astronaut.
In 1977 Furrer applied for selection as an astronaut for the first Spacelab mission. He made it into the final round of candidates, although Ulf Merbold was finally selected. In 1982, the astronauts for the first German Spacelab mission were selected from the finalists for the first mission, and Furrer was one of the two chosen. He was a payload specialist on STS-61-A (D1), which was launched on 30 October 1985. The other payload specialists on the flight were Ernst Messerschmid and Wubbo Ockels (Netherlands).
Ernst Willi Messerschmid (born May 21, 1945) is a German physicist and former astronaut.
From 1978 to 1982, he worked at the DFVLR (the precursor of the DLR) in the Institute of Communications Technology in Oberpfaffenhofen on space-borne communications. In 1983, he was selected as one of the astronauts for the first German Spacelab mission D-1. He flew as payload specialist on STS-61-A in 1985, spending over 168 hours in space.
Dr Wubbo Johannes Ockels (28 March 1946 – 18 May 2014) was a Dutch physicist and an astronaut of the European Space Agency (ESA). In 1985 he participated in a flight on the Space Shuttle Challenger, STS-61-A, making him the first Dutch citizen in space.