Manned five crew. Deployed TDRSS 6. Payloads: Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS)-F/Inertial Upper Stage (IUS); Diffuse X-ray Spectrometer (DXS); Chromosome and Plant Cell Division in Space (CHROMEX); Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGBA) A; Physiological and Anatomical Rodent Experiment (PARE) 02; Solid Surface Combustion Experiment (SSCE).
Orbits of Earth: 96. Distance traveled: 4,025,415 km. Orbiter Liftoff Mass: 117,600 kg. Orbiter Mass at Landing: 89,708 kg. Payload to Orbit: 21,156 kg. Payload Returned: 4,113 kg. Landed at: Concrete Runway 33 at Kennedy Space Center, Florid. Landing Speed: 379 kph. Touchdown miss distance: 457 m. Landing Rollout: 2,651 m. EVA: Gregory J. Harbaugh and Mario Runco, Jr. Duration 4 hours, 27 minutes, 50 seconds.
Mission Name: STS-54 (53)
Pad 39-B (23)
53rd Shuttle Mission
3rd Flight of OV-105
KSC Landing (14)
John H. Casper (2), Commander
Donald R. McMonagle (2), Pilot
Mario Runco, Jr.(2), Mission Specialist 1
Gregory J. Harbaugh (2), Mission Specialist 2
Susan J. Helms (1), Mission Specialist 3
OPF-1 - 9/20/92
VAB - 11/23/92
PAD-B - 12/3/92
Jan. 13, 1993, 8:59.30 a.m. EST. Launch was delayed about 7 minutes due to concerns associated with upper atmospheric winds.
Altitude: 165 nm
Inclination: 28.45 degrees
Duration: 5 days 23 hours 38 minutes 19 seconds
ET : 51
MLP : 2
Jan. 19, 1993, 8:37.47 a.m. EST, KSC Runway 33, Orbit 96. Mission Elapsed time: 5 days, 23 hours, 38 minutes. Rollout distance: 8,723 feet. Landing delayed one orbit due to ground fog at KSC.
The primary payload was the fifth Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-F) which was deployed on day one of the mission. It was later successfully transferred to its proper orbit by the Inertial Upper Stage booster.
Also carried into orbit in the payload bay was a Hitchhiker experiment called the Diffuse X-ray Spectrometer (DXS). This instrument collected data on X-ray radiation from diffuse sources in deep space.
Other middeck payloads to test the effects of microgravity included the Commercial General Bioprocessing Apparatus (CGPA) for-life sciences research; the Chromosome and Plant Cell Division in Space Experiment (CHROMEX) to-study plant growth; the Physiological and Anatomical Rodent Experiment (PARE) to examine the skeletal system and the adaptation of bone to space flight; the Space Acceleration Measurement Equipment (SANS) to measure and record the microgravity acceleration environment of middeck experiments; and the Solid Surface Combustion Experiment (SSCE) to measure the rate of flame spread and temperature of burning filter paper.
Also, on day five, mission specialists Mario Runco and Greg Harbaugh spent nearly 5 hours in the open cargo bay performing a series of space-walking tasks designed to increase NASAs knowledge of working in space. They tested their abilities to move about freely in the cargo bay, climb into foot restraints without using their hands and simulated carrying large objects in the microgravity environment. References: 1 , 2 , 5 , 6 , 7 .