NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
The smoke plume of the Space Shuttle Columbia on mission STS-52 (22 October-1 November 1992). The crew of this mission was formed by six astronauts: James Wetherbee (commander), Michael Baker (pilot), the three mission specialists Charles Lacy Veach, William Shepherd and Tamara Jernigan and the payload specialist Steven MacLean. During the mission the Laser Geodynamics Satellite-2 (LAGEOS-2) was deployed. LAGEOS-2 has a spherical shape and consists of 426 reflecting surfaces about 3.8cm in diameter. They will reflect laser beams sent towards the satellite from ground stations, in order to measure movements of the Earth's surface.
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