Engineering is Awesome


NASA Celebrates the 40th Anniversary of Skylab

NASA will commemorate the 40th anniversary of America’s first space station Monday, May 13, with a televised roundtable discussion featuring Skylab astronauts, a current astronaut and agency managers planning future space missions.

The discussion, open to NASA employees and the public, will begin at 2:30 p.m. EDT in the James Webb Auditorium of NASA Headquarters at 300 E St. SW in Washington. The event will air live on NASA Television and the agency’s website.

NASA launched Skylab on May 14, 1973. It was the nation’s first foray into significant scientific research in microgravity. The three Skylab crews proved humans could live and work effectively for long durations in space. The knowledge gathered during Skylab helped inform development and construction of the International Space Station, just as the research and technology demonstrations being conducted aboard the ISS will help shape a new set of missions that will take Americans farther into the solar system.

The bottom image is the original Skylab concept

This sketch of Skylab was drawn by George E. Mueller, NASA associate administrator for Manned Space Flight. This concept drawing was created at a meeting at the Marshall Space Flight Center on Aug. 19, 1966. The image details the station’s major elements. In 1970, the station became known as Skylab. Three crewed Skylab missions (Skylab 2 in May 1973; Skylab 3 in July 1973; and Skylab 4 in November 1973) were flown, on which experiments were conducted in space science, Earth resources, life sciences, space technology and student projects.

Read more about Skylab at NASA History in:
SKYLAB, Our First Space Station
Living and Working in Space: A History of SKYLAB

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