Back to Top

ASK OCE  June, 14, 2006 — Vol. 1, Issue 9

On June 18, 1983, the space shuttle Challenger carried Dr. Sally Ride into orbit on flight STS-7, making her the first American woman in space.

During the mission, the five-member crew deployed a pair of communications satellites for Canada and Indonesia, performed the first satellite deployment and retrieval with the shuttle’s robotic arm, and conducted materials and pharmaceutical research. STS-7 was in orbit for 6 days (147 hours) before landing at Edwards Air Force Base on June 24.

Dr. Ride’s second spaceflight was also aboard Challenger on STS-41G in October 1984. In June 1985, she was assigned to a third space shuttle flight, but training for it was interrupted in January 1986 by the Challenger accident. Ride served as a member of the Presidential Commission investigating the accident. Upon completion of the investigation, Dr. Ride was assigned to NASA headquarters as assistant to the NASA Administrator for long-range planning. In this position she created NASA’s Office of Exploration and produced a report on the future of the space program entitled “Leadership and America’s Future in Space.”

Dr. Ride has received the Jefferson Award for Public Service, and has twice been awarded the National Spaceflight Medal. She also has created the Sally Ride Science Festivals and Sally Ride Science camps to support and inspire girls and boys who are interested in math, science and technology.

Dr. Ride is currently a physicist and a member of the faculty at the University of California, San Diego, as a physics professor. She is the former Director of the California Space Science Institute, a research institute of the University of California.


In This Issue

Message from the Chief Engineer

A View from Outside: Kazakhstan’s Spacecraft Junkyard

This Week in NASA History: Sally Ride Becomes First American Woman in Space

Tim Brady to Lead APPEL Systems Engineering Effort

NASA Engineering Network Comes Online

Recent Launches: GOES-N and CALIPSO/Cloudsat

Getting Ready for the Moon, Mars and Beyond

GAO: DoD Acquisition Reforms Have Not Reduced Problems

Archimedes Archive: The Transatlantic Cable of 1866

About the Author

Share With Your Colleagues