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"MEEP" stands for "Mir Environmental Effects Payload." MEEP was attached to the Shuttle/Mir docking module during an STS-76 EVA by NASA mission specialists Linda M. Godwin and Michael (Rich) Clifford. It was later retrieved during and STS-86 EVA by NASA mission specialist Scott Parzynski and cosmonaut Vladimir Titov.
MEEP studied the frequency and effects of both human-made and natural space debris striking Mir, capturing some debris for later study. MEEP also exposed International Space Station materials to the effects of space and orbital debris. The ISS is currently being constructed in an Earth orbit very similar to Mir's.
MEEP consisted of four separate experiments. The Polished Plate Micrometeoroid and Debris experiment, which studied how often space debris hit the station, the sizes of these debris, the source of the debris, and the damage the debris would do if it hit the station. The Orbital Debris Collector experiment was designed to capture orbital debris and return them to Earth to determine what the debris are made of and their possible origins. The Passive Optical Sample Assembly I and II experiments consisted of various materials that are intended for use on ISS. These materials included paint samples, glass coatings, multi-layer insulation and a variety of metallic samples.
The four MEEP experiments were contained in four Passive Experiment Carriers (PEC). Each PEC consisted of a sidewall carrier for attachment to the payload bay of Atlantis (for STS-76), a handrail clamp for attachment to the Mir shuttle docking module, and an experiment container to house the individual experiment.
More detailed discussions of the Mir space station and its modules can be found in David Portree's Mir Hardware Heritage, available on this Web site in PDF format.
Mir Space Station
Space Shuttle Orbiter | Mir Space Station
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Responsible NASA Official: John Ira Petty