STS-86 Shuttle-Mir Mission 7
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Atlantis September 25, 1997 launch Mission:  Ferry flight for CAPE hardware to Mir Space Station ITA Experiment: CAPE Hardware Flown:   DMDA & DMDA-O (2nd Gen) 4 Flight Units Commercial/ industrial experiments.  Hardware leased to Canadian Space Agency for protein crystal growth experiments. Primary Mission Objective:  Shuttle-Mir docking mission. This was the 7th of 9 Mir docking missions.  It’s ten day mission highlights included five days of docked operations between Atlantis and Mir and the exchange of crew members to continue a permanent American presence of the Russia complex.  A spacewalk retrieved four Mir Environmental Effects Payloads which were attached to the Mir's docking during STS-76 to characterize the environment surrounding the Mir space station. Payload integrators know that there is a big downside to integrating hardware on a mission where humans fly.  Crewed missions significantly increase the amount of paper work and testing required for flight.  ITA found that flight requirements with the Russians on Mir however, were significantly less bureaucratic and tailored to minimize obstacles to flight.  New launch providers could benefit from a review of the way the Russians do business. The Shuttle-Mir program was a collaborative program between Russia and the United States which involved American Space Shuttles visiting the Mir, Russian cosmonauts flying on the shuttle, and an American astronaut flying aboard a Soyuz spacecraft to engage in long-duration expeditions aboard Mir.
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STS-86 September 25, 1997 night launch of Atlantis
STS-86 Mir from Atlantis
STS-86 survey view
CAPE DDC162 Crystal
CAPE Experiment i in Mir
STS-86 Mir Cape Hardware prior to turnover
CAPE Aldolase Crystal
STS 86 views Himalayan Mountains
STS-86 at Mir
STS-86 crew with Mir crew
STS-86 Atlantis lands at KSC
STS-86 Astronaut Scott Parazynski