At its best, the space shuttle is the embodiment of 20th-century scientific progress, a stunningly complex vehicle that can lift into space, orbit the Earth, return to Earth's atmosphere and be reused in a matter of weeks. At its worst, the shuttle is a symbol of the dangers that come with space travel. How did the shuttle program begin? And what keeps astronauts alive in the depths of outer space?
Question 1 of 30
How fast does a shuttle need to travel to achieve orbit?
Question 2 of 30
What is the top speed of a space shuttle as it orbits Earth?
Question 3 of 30
At this speed, how often does the shuttle crew watch the sun rise or set?
Question 4 of 30
How long does a typical space shuttle mission last?
Question 5 of 30
What is the longest amount of time a shuttle has stayed in orbit during a mission?
Question 6 of 30
True or false: The combined mileage of the five space shuttles equals the distance between Earth and Jupiter.
Question 7 of 30
Which space shuttle accumulated the most career miles?
Question 8 of 30
Who is the only president to have witnessed a space shuttle launch firsthand?
Question 9 of 30
What percentage of the thrust necessary to lift a space shuttle do the solid rocket boosters (SRBs) provide?
Question 10 of 30
The main engine's external fuel tank primarily contains …
Question 11 of 30
Which of the following is NOT a reason the external fuel tank is covered with a special, inch-thick layer of foam insulation?
Question 12 of 30
What part of the shuttle orbiter contains the main engines?
Question 13 of 30
What is the shuttle's heat shield — it's thermal protection system — made from?
Question 14 of 30
What does the "STS" prefix in front of NASA mission names indicate?
Question 15 of 30
What U.S. president announced the development of the space shuttle?
Question 16 of 30
Which of the following occurs at T plus 8.5 minutes of a typical shuttle launch?
Question 17 of 30
What caused Challenger to break apart at the beginning of what would have been the shuttle's 10th flight?
Question 18 of 30
Which of the following best describes the communication system between mission control and the shuttle orbiter?
Question 19 of 30
Why does NASA place more than 100 cameras around the launch pad to film the shuttle during liftoff?
Question 20 of 30
Who was the first astronaut to tweet from space?
Question 21 of 30
True or false: The space shuttle external tank (ET) is left unpainted.
Question 22 of 30
Which space shuttle component is NOT reusable?
Question 23 of 30
What's the biggest crew that could fly in a space shuttle orbiter?
Question 24 of 30
How many people have flown on shuttle missions?
Question 25 of 30
The power from the three main engines is equivalent to the energy created by which energy source?
Question 26 of 30
What damaged part failed to protect the Columbia and its seven-astronaut crew as the shuttle attempted to re-enter Earth's atmosphere on Feb. 1, 2003?
Question 27 of 30
Which was the last song played during the final wake-up call for the last shuttle crew?
Question 28 of 30
True or false: A Buzz Lightyear figure from "Toy Story" has been to the International Space Station.
Question 29 of 30
How long did 12-inch Buzz spend in orbit?
Question 30 of 30