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Space Shuttle Program

The Space Shuttle is developed by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. NASA coordinates and manages the Space Transportation System (NASA's name for the overall Shuttle program), including intergovernmental agency requirements and international and joint projects. NASA also oversees the launch and space flight requirements for civilian and commercial use.

The Space Shuttle system consists of four primary elements: an orbiter spacecraft, two Solid Rocket Boosters (SRB), an external tank to house fuel and oxidizer and three Space Shuttle main engines.

The orbiter is built by Rockwell International's Space Transportation Systems Division, Downey, Calif., which also has responsibility for the integration of the overall space transportation system. Both orbiter and integration contracts are under the direction of NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.

The SRB motors are built by the Wasatch Division of Morton Thiokol Corp., Brigham City, Utah, and are assembled, checked out and refurbished by United Space Boosters Inc., Booster Production Co., Kennedy Space Center. Cape Canaveral, Fla. The external tank is built by Martin Marietta Corp. at its Michoud facility, New Orleans, La., and the Space Shuttle main engines are built by Rockwell's Rocketdyne Division, Canoga Park, Calif. These contracts are under the direction of NASA's George C. Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.

Curator: Kim Dismukes | Responsible NASA Official: John Ira Petty | Updated: 04/07/2002
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