What Is A Payload?
The formal designation as a "payload" indicates that the experiment will be accorded top priority in crew time and energies during the 9-day flight, along with all other experiments carrying the same "payload" designation. However, payloads are often not the only investigations planned for a Shuttle mission. STS-95 objectives include a number of secondary investigations called Detailed Supplementary Objectives (DSO) and Development Test Objectives (DTO). These DSOs and DTOs will be conducted before, during, and after the October mission. Consisting of experiments and technology demonstrations, these investigations will supplement knowledge gained from the primary mission payloads.
Three multidisciplinary space science payloads will share Discovery's cargo bay with the pressurized SPACEHAB module:
Discoveries about the unknown source of the energy that heats the
solar corona and accelerates the solar wind may help scientists
understand the winds that carry mass and momentum away from other
stars and why the sun's rotation has slowed. The results may also
help them to explain how the Earth's magnetism and, ultimately,
its climate and weather are affected by variations in the radiation
and particles emitted by the sun.
- The Hubble Space Telescope Orbiting Systems Test (HOST) will
validate components planned for installation during the upcoming
Hubble Space Telescope (HST) servicing mission and evaluate
new technologies in an Earth-orbiting environment.
- The Spartan 201 free-flyer is designed to investigate physical
conditions and processes of the hot outer layer of the Sun's
- The International Extreme Ultraviolet Hitchhiker (IEH-03)
involves six different ultraviolet astronomy experiments mounted
on a support structure.
The Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Orbital Systems Test (HOST) platform
is an on-orbit test bed for hardware that will be installed on the
orbiting telescope during the third HST servicing mission.
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The primary objective of the HOST mission is to demonstrate
that electronic and thermodynamic equipment slated for installation
on the Hubble Telescope in 1999 works in the radiation and microgravity
Since extreme ultraviolet (EUV) flux, or radiation, cannot penetrate
the Earth's atmosphere, scientists who want to learn more about
this important energy source from the sun must conduct their experiments
in space. Scientists hope that these experiments will provide
data that will help them improve their global solar atmospheric
models, which will lead to a better understanding of solar variability.
Using both space flight- and ground-based experiments, researchers
throughout the nation, as well as international partners, are working
together to benefit economic, social, and industrial aspects of
life for the United States and the entire Earth. U.S. universities,
designated by NASA as "Commercial Space Centers," share these space
advancements with U.S. industry to create new commercial products,
applications, and processes.
The BRIC-13 investigation will contribute to researchers' understanding
of how the weightlessness of space affects the development of plants.
The implications are important for the crews of future long-duration
space flights because they will depend on plants grown in space
for food, water, and oxygen. Better understanding of embryo formation
and cell division also could result in advances in medical technology
and better pharmaceutical products.
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CRYOTSU will provide aerospace designers with a "toolbox" of thermal
control elements that they can select from to determine ways of
reliably solving complex spacecraft thermal design problems with
minimum expenditures of power, weight and cost.
Early detection of contaminants aboard spacecraft is vital to crew
health. The problems with current air quality monitoring equipment
may be solved by the extremely compact and unobtrusive design of
E-Nose, which can detect, identify, and quantify a wide range of
air constituents. This comprehensive measurement of spacecraft air
quality by a miniature, distributed device also has potential application
for environmental monitoring and control on Earth.
Four Getaway Special (GAS) payloads will be aboard the STS-95 mission.
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The G-467 GAS payload is to demonstrate in space the working
principle and performance of a two-phase capillary pumped loop
(CPL) with two advanced evaporators, a two-phase vapor quality
sensor (VQS) with two condensers in parallel, and a control reservoir.
G-779, or Hearts in Space, was developed by researchers at Bellarmine
College in Louisville, Ky. The purpose of the payload is to study
why astronauts' hearts become smaller while in space.
The other two GAS experiments, G-238 and G-764, are part of
the International Extreme Ultraviolet Hitchhiker (IEH)-03 payload.
Proteins are important, complex biochemicals that serve a variety
of purposes in living organisms.
Structural information gained from protein crystal growth (PCG)
activities can provide a better understanding of the body's immune
system and aid in the design of safe and effective treatments
for disease and infections.
Some of the specific objectives and benefits of the SEM program are
- Provide economical access to space for students from kindergarten
to the university level.
- Tie SEM program to NASA and U.S. educational goals and standards.
- Ensure that student participation is not limited by geographical
Space Experiment Module