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JOHNSON SPACE CENTER, HOUSTON -- STS123-S-002-- These seven astronauts take a break from training to pose for the STS-123 crew portrait.  From the right (front row) are astronauts Dominic L. Gorie, commander, and Gregory H. Johnson, pilot.  From the left (back row) are astronauts Richard M. Linnehan, Robert L. Benken, Garrett E. Reisman, Michael J. Foreman and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's (JAXA) Takao Doi, all mission specialists.  Reisman is scheduled to join Expedition 16 as flight engineer after launching to the International Space Station on mission STS-123.  The crewmembers are attired in training versions of their shuttle launch and entry suits. KSC-08pd0364

JOHNSON SPACE CENTER, HOUSTON -- STS123-S-002-- These seven astronauts take a break from training to pose for the STS-123 crew portrait. From the right (front row) are astronauts Dominic L. Gorie, commander, and Gregory H. Johnson, pilot. From the left (back row) are astronauts Richard M. Linnehan, Robert L. Benken, Garrett E. Reisman, Michael J. Foreman and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's (JAXA) Takao Doi, all mission specialists. Reisman is scheduled to join Expedition 16 as flight engineer after launching to the International Space Station on mission STS-123. The crewmembers are attired in training versions of their shuttle launch and entry suits. KSC-08pd0364

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JOHNSON SPACE CENTER, HOUSTON -- STS123-S-002-- These seven astronauts take a break from training to pose for the STS-123 crew portrait. From the right (front row) are astronauts Dominic L. Gorie, commander, and Gregory H. Johnson, pilot. From the left (back row) are astronauts Richard M. Linnehan, Robert L. Benken, Garrett E. Reisman, Michael J. Foreman and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's (JAXA) Takao Doi, all mission specialists. Reisman is scheduled to join Expedition 16 as flight engineer after launching to the International Space Station on mission STS-123. The crewmembers are attired in training versions of their shuttle launch and entry suits.

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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26/07/2007
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Johnson Space Center, Houston, TX
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NASA
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