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Gallery: Landings

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1966. As a helicopter hovers above, the Gemini-12 spacecraft with parachute open descends to the Atlantic with astronauts Jim Lovell and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin aboard.

Splashdown of Gemini 9A carrying astronauts Eugene Cernan and Thomas Stafford at 9:00 a.m., June 6, 1966.

Gemini 10 spacecraft at splashdown.

Flying along the Indian River toward KSC's Shuttle Landing Facility is the orbiter Columbia as it nears touchdown on Runway 33 to complete the nearly 16-day STS-90 mission. This unique view with Titusville and the Indian River in the background was taken from the roof of the 525-foot-high Vehicle Assembly Building.

1989. The Space Shuttle Atlantis returns to Earth after mission STS-30 landing at Edwards Air Force Base, California. On this mission, the shuttle deployed the un-manned Magellan spacecraft to explore the planet Venus.

The Space Shuttle Columbia, returning to KSC after the successful STS-32 mission, is poised atop the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) as the duo fly by the Vehicle Assembly Building (VAB) at KSC January 26, 1990.

1992. As the sun rises the morning of April 2, it casts a rosy glow over a steller performer, the orbiter Atlantis parked on Runway 33 of the Shuttle Landing Facility. This completed the highly successful mission STS-45 that was extended by one day to further scientific research on the ATLAS-1 payload.

1992. The newest addition to the Space Shuttle orbiter fleet, Endeavour, arrives at KSC atop the 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft on May 7. OV-105 will be demated from the Boeing aircraft, and towed to the Vehicle Assembly Building for installation of several major flight components.

1997. Framed by the Vehicle Assembly Building in the distance, at left, and the Mate-Demate Device, the Space Shuttle Atlantis with its drag chute deployed touches down on KSC's Runway 33 at the conclusion of STS-84 mission.

1997. The Space Shuttle orbiter Atlantis touches down on Runway 15 of the Kennedy Space Center Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) at the conclusion of the nearly 11-day STS-86 mission.

1998. Orbiter Discovery is riding on its main landing gear as it lowers its nose wheel after touching down on Runway 33 at the Shuttle Landing Facility. Main gear touchdown was at 12:04 p.m. EST, landing on orbit 135.

1998. A flock of birds takes flight as the orbiter Columbia, with its drag chute deployed, touches down on Runway 22 of KSC's Shuttle Landing Facility to complete the nearly 16-day STS-90 mission.

1997. The orbiter drag chute deploys after the Space Shuttle orbiter Atlantis lands on runway 15 of the Kennedy Space Center Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) at the conclusion of the nearly 11-day STS-86 mission.

The Space Shuttle orbiter Endeavour and its crew of six glide in to Runway 15 at KSC's Shuttle Landing Facility after spending nine days in space on the STS-72 mission, the first Shuttle flight of 1996. It is the eighth night landing of the Shuttle since the program began in 1981, but only the third night landing at KSC.

1997. Takeoff of the Shuttle Carrier Aircraft (SCA) with the Space Shuttle Atlantis mated atop bound for Palmdale, California.

The Space Shuttle orbiter Endeavour passes over KSC's Shuttle Landing Facility atop NASA's Boeing 747 Shuttle carrier Aircraft (SCA) as it returns March 27, 1997 from Palmdale, California, after an eight-month Orbiter Maintenance Down Period (OMDP).


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