The Space Shuttle is the first orbital spacecraft
designed for reuse. It carries different payloads
to Low Earth Orbit, provides crew rotation for the
International Space Station (ISS), and performs
The orbiter can also recover
satellites and other payloads from orbit and
return them to Earth. Each Shuttle was designed
for a projected lifespan of 100 launches or ten
years of operational life, although this was later
The person in charge of designing the STS was Maxime Faget, who had also overseen the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo spacecraft designs.
The crucial factor in the size and shape of the Shuttle Orbiter was the requirement that it be able to accommodate the largest planned commercial and classified satellites, and have the cross-range recovery range to meet the requirement for classified USAF missions.
Atlantis is named after RV Atlantis, a twomasted
sailing ship that operated as the
primary research vessel for the Woods Hole
Oceanographic Institution from 1930 to 1966.
The 460-ton ketch carried a crew of 17 and had
room for 5 scientists.
The former RV Atlantis is now commissioned
as an oceanographic research vessel in the
Argentine Naval Prefecture under the name Dr.
Bernardo Houssay and finishing a lengthy period
of restoration. From Wikipedia.com