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Click on the thumbnails below to access a high-resolution version of the image:
The first orbital mission of the Space Transportation System lifts off from the Kennedy Space Center on April 12, 1981. (Image number: S-81-30459)
The roar of the Space Shuttle's engines breaks the calm of the Florida coast during the liftoff of STS-1. (Image number: S-81-30462)
Columbia roars to life from Pad 39A on April 12, 1981. (Image number: S-81-30492)
The Space Shuttle's engines propel a massive cloud of exhaust hundreds of feet into the air during liftoff. (Image number: S-81-30499)
The Shuttle's recognizable, orange external fuel tank is seen here painted white. The coating was used for the first two missions into space, but later dropped to save weight. (Image number: S-81-30498)
STS-1 soars into space on April 12, 1981. (Image number: KSC-81PC-0370)
A pre-launch Columbia on the crawler transporter, making its way from the Vehicle Assembly Building to the launch pad at the Kennedy Space Center. (Image number: KSC-80PC-0645)
Young and Crippen during training on Columbia's flight deck. (Image number: S-80-40389)
A dramatic evening photo of Columbia sitting on the pad at Kennedy Space Center. (Image number: S-81-29212)
Dr. Alan M. Lovelace, acting administrator of NASA, presents Vice President George H.W. Bush with a model of the Space Shuttle during the vice president's visit to the Kennedy Space Center. (Image number: KSC-81PC-0164)
Young and Crippen practice using a slidewire basket system designed to get astronauts away from the pad quickly during an emergency. (Image number: KSC-81PC-0017)
BYoung and Crippen are suited up for launch at the Kennedy Space Center's Operations and Checkout Building before the final STS-1 simulated countdown and launch on March 19, 1981. (Image number: KSC-81PC-0186)
Commander Young receives final touches to his suit prior to the final simulated countdown and launch on March 19, 1981. (Image number: KSC-81PC-0188)
Young is followed by Crippen as the two men make their way from the Operations and Checkout Building to Pad 39A on April 12, 1981. (Image number: KSC-81PC-0327)
In this official STS-1 mission photo, astronauts Young and Crippen pose with a model of the orbiter. (Image number: S-81-31775)
While on the mid-deck, Crippen floats effortlessly in the microgravity of space. (Image number: S-81-30420)
Crippen takes a meal break on Columbia's mid-deck. (Image number: S-01-07-0502)
Young opens a storage container on the mid-deck while Columbia orbits Earth. (Image number: S-01-06-0497)
The Shuttle's Solid Rocket Boosters break away from Columbia's External Tank and fall to Earth about two minutes after liftoff. The boosters were collected and used in later missions. (Image number: S-81-33179)
Columbia seen in flight moments before touchdown at Edwards Air Force Base on April 14, 1981. (Image number: S-81-30455)
The orbiter receives post-landing servicing following STS-1's successful touchdown at Edwards Air Force Base. (Image number: S-81-31913)
The mission patch for STS-1, the first Shuttle mission to fly in space. (Image number: S-79-30685)
Further NASA image resources:
http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/search.cfm?cat=158
The Kennedy Space Center's Multimedia Archive page with a collection of STS-1 images. Includes an extensive collection of assembly, launch, and processing photos.
http://grin.hq.nasa.gov/BROWSE/space-shuttle_1.html
A collection of Space Shuttle images from the Great Images in NASA (GRIN) database. Also use this site to access more famous or historically significant images from NASA.
http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/gallery/images/shuttle/index.html
NASA‚s Human Space Flight Space Shuttle gallery, with an extensive compilation of Shuttle photos and videos.
http://nix.nasa.gov/
The NASA Image Exchange, a comprehensive database with images from a number of time periods and NASA Field Centers.
http://mediaarchive.ksc.nasa.gov/index.cfm
The Kennedy Space Center's Multimedia Archive, a fully searchable collection of KSC photos and videos.
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