This is the official final orbiter mission report issued by the NASA Johnson Space Center for the flight of STS-3, the third Space Shuttle mission, launched in March 1982 with Mattingly and Hartsfield. Forty-seven orbiter anomalies are discussed. Each orbiter system is reviewed in detail, with technical information on performance and anomalies.
Mission objectives included: Demonstrate safe re-launch and safe return of the orbiter and crew. Verify the combined performance of the entire shuttle vehicle - orbiter, solid rocket boosters and external tank.
Payloads included the 8,740 lbs. Office of Space Science (OSS-1) Pallet consisting of the Plant Lignification Experiment, the Plasma Diagnostic Package (PDP), the Vehicle Charging and Potential (VCAP) experiment, the Space Shuttle Induced Atmosphere experiment, the Thermal Canister experiment, the Solar Flare X-Ray Polarimeter, the Solar Ultraviolet and Spectral Irradiance Monitor (SUSIM), the Contamination Monitor Package and the Foil Microabrasion Package. Also in the payload bay was the 11,048 lbs. Development Flight Instrumentation (DFI) Pallet and the 448 lbs. Aerodynamic Coefficient Identification Package (ACIP). The crew compartment housed the Monodisperse Latex Reactor (MLR) experiment and the Heflex Bioengineering Test (HBT) experiment.
Mission Highlights: The launch was delayed one hour due to failure of a heater on the nitrogen gas ground support line. Testing continued of space shuttle systems for qualification for operational flights. Testing of remote manipulator system and measurements of thermal response of orbiter in various attitudes to sun conducted. Get Away Special test canister and Spacelab pallet-mounted experiments for NASA's Office of Space Science-1 (OSS-1) carried in payload bay. OSS-1 obtained data on near-Earth space environment, including contamination (gases, dust, etc.) introduced into space by orbiter itself. Other experiments: Monodisperse Latex Reactor (MLR), Electrophoresis Equipment Verification Test (EEVT), Heflex Bioengineering Test (HBT) and first Shuttle Student Involvement Program (SSIP) experiment. Problems encountered: space sickness, malfunctioning toilet, thermostat difficulty and unexplained static interfering with crew sleep. Auxiliary power unit registered overheating during ascent, but functioned properly during descent. Three communications links were lost.