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Vintage Systems

Columbia Blanket

This blanket flew in the cargo bay of Columbia (OV-102) on STS-5 and was used to protect the Space Shuttle structure from solar radiation.

It is made of a Beta-Cloth material similar to that used on the official NASA astronaut patches. There is a high strength stainless steel thread used to reenforced this space artifact. If you observe photos of the Space shuttle Cargo Bay you will notice extensive use of these blankets.

OV-102 designates this FLOWN HARDWARE as coming from the Columbia Space Shuttle Orbiter.

The dimensions are about 6.5 inches long by 5.5 inches wide and is a cut down swatch of a much larger piece. The tag shown here is only a photo copy of the original NASA tag.

The fifth flight was the first operational mission of the Columbia Space Shuttle.
Launch took place at 7:19 AM EST on November 11, 1982 and carried 2 Satellites into orbit. Vance Brand was the commander, Robert F. Overmyer was the pilot and the first 2 mission specialists to fly were Joseph P. Allen and William B. Lenoir.

This mission lasted 5 days 2hours 14 minutes and 24 seconds.

Columbia landed at Edwards AFB on November 1982 and was returned to KSC for refurbishment.

(Source image 1005 x 1256 pixels)