Mission STS-80 carried the Orfeus astronomy satellite, the Wake Shield Facility, and spacewalk equipment. The Orfeus satellite was deployed on November 20. It carried an ultraviolet telescope and spectrographs. Wake Shield Facility was deployed on November 22 and retrieved on November 26 . On 1996 Nov 29, crewmembers Tamara Jernigan and Thomas Jones were to conduct the first of several planned EVAs. However the shuttle's exit hatch would not open and NASA cancelled this and the other planned spacewalks of the mission. On December 4 at the astronauts retrieved the Orfeus satellite using the RMS arm. Reentry attempts on Dec 5 and Dec 6 were called off due to bad weather. Columbia finally landed at 11:49 GMT December 7 on Runway 33 at Kennedy Space Center, making STS-80 the longest shuttle mission to that date .
The Space Shuttle Orbiter OV-102 Columbia was launched at 19:55:50 GMT on November 19 from Kennedy Space Center. The SRBs separated at 1957 GMT and main engine cutoff was at 20:04 GMT. The OMS 2 burn at around 20:40 GMT placed Columbia in a circular orbit.
Mission STS-80 carried the Orfeus astronomy satellite, the Wake Shield Facility, and spacewalk equipment. A hold was called at 19:52 GMT, T-31s just prior to entering computer RSLS control because too much hydrogen was in the aft compartment. After a two minute pause permission was given to continue.
The Orfeus satellite was deployed on November 20 at 04:11 GMT. It carried an ultraviolet telescope and spectrographs. Wake Shield Facility was deployed on November 22 at 20:38 GMT. OV-102, Orfeus and WSF were in a 91.6 min, 346 x 358 km x 28.5 deg orbit. Columbia retrieved WSF at 02:03 GMT on November26 and berthed it in the payload bay at 02:36 GMT.
On 1996 November 29, STS-80 crewmembers Tamara Jernigan and Thomas Jones were in Columbia's airlock. At 02:09 GMT they depressurized, and by 02:21 GMT the airlock was fully depressurized. However, the astronauts were unable to open the airlock due to a stuck handle. At 03:07 GMT, the airlock was partially repressurized to 4psi, and the airlock thermal cover was blown off for inspection. After further fruitless attempts to open the hatch, full repressurization began at 03:48 and was complete at 04:01, with the astronauts still in their suits. Story Musgrave came in without a suit and again tried to free the hatch - internal pressure in the airlock would have prevented a leak if he had succeeded.
After thinking hard for a couple of days, NASA decided to cancel any further attempts at spacewalks on this mission. There are cases where a contingency EVA (emergency spacewalk) would be necessary, for instance if the payload bay doors refused to close. They would try and force the hatch open in that case.
On December 3, Columbia began its re-rendezvous with the ORFEUS-SPAS astronomy satellite. On December 4 at 08:23 GMT, the astronauts retrieved the ORFEUS-SPAS vehicle using the RMS arm. The doors were closed and opened again on December 5, closed on December 6 and opened yet again, following reentry attempts on December 5 and December 6 which were called off due to bad weather. Columbia finally landed at 11:49 GMT December 7 on Runway 33 at Kennedy Space Center, making STS-80 the longest shuttle mission to that date at 17 days 15 hr 53 min. References: 4 , 7 , 276 .