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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - The Freedom Star is berthed at the Turn Basin near the Vehicle Assembly Building.  The ship has recently returned to KSC after refurbishment at Fort George Island, Fla., including new paint.  Freedom Star is one of the solid rocket booster (SRB) retrieval ships built to recover the SRB casings released over the Atlantic Ocean after launch of a Space Shuttle.  In addition to the SRBs, the ship recovers the drogue and main parachutes that slow the boosters’ speed before splashdown.  Some of the retrieval equipment can be seen on the rear deck.  The ships also tow the external tanks built at the Michoud Space Systems Assembly Facility near New Orleans to Port Canaveral, Fla.  Freedom Star was brought to KSC today for a visit by NATO Parliamentarians.

KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - The Freedom Star is berthed at the Turn Basin near the Vehicle Assembly Building. The ship has recently returned to KSC after refurbishment at Fort George Island, Fla., including new paint. Freedom Star is one of the solid rocket booster (SRB) retrieval ships built to recover the SRB casings released over the Atlantic Ocean after launch of a Space Shuttle. In addition to the SRBs, the ship recovers the drogue and main parachutes that slow the boosters’ speed before splashdown. Some of the retrieval equipment can be seen on the rear deck. The ships also tow the external tanks built at the Michoud Space Systems Assembly Facility near New Orleans to Port Canaveral, Fla. Freedom Star was brought to KSC today for a visit by NATO Parliamentarians.

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KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA. - The Freedom Star is berthed at the Turn Basin near the Vehicle Assembly Building. The ship has recently returned to KSC after refurbishment at Fort George Island, Fla., including new paint. Freedom Star is one of the solid rocket booster (SRB) retrieval ships built to recover the SRB casings released over the Atlantic Ocean after launch of a Space Shuttle. In addition to the SRBs, the ship recovers the drogue and main parachutes that slow the boosters’ speed before splashdown. Some of the retrieval equipment can be seen on the rear deck. The ships also tow the external tanks built at the Michoud Space Systems Assembly Facility near New Orleans to Port Canaveral, Fla. Freedom Star was brought to KSC today for a visit by NATO Parliamentarians.

The Space Shuttle program was the United States government's manned launch vehicle program from 1981 to 2011, administered by NASA and officially beginning in 1972. The Space Shuttle system—composed of an orbiter launched with two reusable solid rocket boosters and a disposable external fuel tank— carried up to eight astronauts and up to 50,000 lb (23,000 kg) of payload into low Earth orbit (LEO). When its mission was complete, the orbiter would re-enter the Earth's atmosphere and lands as a glider. Although the concept had been explored since the late 1960s, the program formally commenced in 1972 and was the focus of NASA's manned operations after the final Apollo and Skylab flights in the mid-1970s. It started with the launch of the first shuttle Columbia on April 12, 1981, on STS-1. and finished with its last mission, STS-135 flown by Atlantis, in July 2011.

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Date

10/11/2003
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Location

Kennedy Space Center, FL
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Source

NASA
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