Space Cover #42, STS-107/Columbia ------------------
The space cover of the week is a tribute to the STS-107 astronaut crew and their science mission.
STS-107 was launched on January 16, 2003 Commander, Rick Husband; Pilot, William McCool; Payload Commander, Michael Anderson; Mission Specialists, Dave Brown, Kalpana Chawla and Laurel Clark and Payload Specialist, Ilan Ramon.
This marathon science mission conducted experiments which included 9 commercial payloads involving 21 separate investigations; 4 payloads for the European Space Agency with 14 investigations; 1 payload/investigation for ISS Risk Mitigation and 18 payloads supporting 23 investigations for NASA's Office of Biological and Physical Research. All of the above were housed in the Spacehab Research Double Module.
There were also 6 payload/experiments on the FREESTAR hitchiker pallet that looked outward at the sun; downward at earth's atmosphere and inward into the physics of fluids as well as tested technology for space communications. Most of the scientific data was transmitted to experimenters on the ground during the flight.
Vehicle and crew lost during reentry on February 1, 2003.